Where is the best place to advertise? It’s a question that keeps many brands up at night. It doesn’t help that there’s no one straight answer. A cursory, “where should I advertise?” Google search brings up thousands of conflicting results. It appears there are as many answers as there are brands.
When we answer this burning question with the phrase “it depends,” bear with us. There are countless platforms out there, yes, but there are several that, in our minds, rise to the top. Essentially, all platforms are suited to different goals. The key is to identify these goals strategically and work with the platform(s) best suited towards them.
Let’s look at some of the best digital platforms for advertising and break down what makes them great.
As you may already know, Google Ads is based on a bidding system, where advertisers get to display brief ads, product listings, videos, and so on. Those ads can appear in search engine results, non-search websites, mobile apps, and more, making their reach far and wide. It uses a pay-per-click (PPC) pricing model, which means that the ads you pay for appear in response to specific keywords and keyword combos. Whenever a user clicks your ad and is directed to your site, you pay a specific dollar amount.
Google Ads are best for those lower in the funnel stage of advertising. That may not make sense immediately, as this platform can be a tad pricey. However, the clicks are usually more targeted; you can ensure that your ads only appear at certain times of day, for example, or in response to a specific chain of keywords. It’s all about the balancing act: ensuring that your ads are, indeed, appearing to the right people, but that your advertising budget isn’t going to waste on random or conversion-less clicks.
Not only are the clicks more targeted, but businesses make, on average, double the revenue for every $1 they spend on Google Ads. Well, technically, it’s around 2 to 2.3 times their total expenditure, but Google took the modest approach in a recent report.
The biggest drawback with Google Ads is, again, the expense, but don’t let that deter you! To continually optimize your PPC ad campaign (and protect your ad budget while you’re at it), you can regularly review keyword performance and keep an eye on your bidding budget.
Social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and even TikTok encourage content creation and sharing valuable product information. This is not the place for boring product manuals or technobabble (unless you can condense it into a nice video or infographic). It relies heavily on user-generated content to help individuals and businesses connect. If you’re looking to create a social media ad campaign, you’re in good company; there were over 3.8 billion social media users at the start of 2020. 3.8 billion—nearly half the world’s population!
Is your product visually appealing, or does your brand have a memorable aesthetic, whether in color scheme, company voice, or something else? Then social media is an excellent route to go. Even if your products and services aren’t exactly straightforward or glamorous (we’re looking at you, B2B businesses), social media helps boost user engagement by breaking your company down into digestible chunks. That could mean explaining products in bite-sized social media ads or giving those ads a cohesive color scheme for a visually-oriented public.
Not sure where to start? Instagram is one of our favorites, placing extra emphasis on visuals over text. What’s more, approximately 90% of users follow a business on the platform, meaning that IG users are already looking to hear from and interact with brands and ad campaigns.
One of the most evident drawbacks of social media advertising is that it’s time-consuming. Tasks may include staying up on trends—or continually refining your brand’s voice, look, stance on important issues, etc. With social media and the world around us constantly changing, it pays to have an alert digital marketing team monitoring and tweaking your ad campaign when needed.
Okay, we know that this technically should be filed under the “social media” category, but LinkedIn does function differently from the rest. It’s all about professional networking, so ads that recruit new employees, in addition to boosting brand awareness, tend to be the most successful.
LinkedIn offers effective targeted ad options, such as Sponsored InMail, that’s sent to other LinkedIn members. This allows companies to connect with those already interested in growing professionally, rather than spammers. There’s also Sponsored Content, which runs ads in users’ news feeds and Lead Gen forms. These techniques are worth a look; feed engagement has grown 50% in response to sponsored ads alone.
As we talked about with Google Ads, LinkedIn advertising can come at a steep price. For many businesses, $5 or more per click isn’t a worthy investment. Moreover, many LinkedIn users are just job hunting, meaning they may not be receptive to your sales pitch. That’s why it pays (literally) to know your target audience and accommodate their needs.
Snap: Crafting Show-Stopping Ad Campaigns Since 2010
What constitutes the “best ad platform” is debatable, but thankfully, the “best digital marketing agency” is not. Okay, okay, we’re being facetious, but we really are great at what we do, and creating killer ad campaigns is no exception. Message us today to find out more.