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Social Advertising: $4 Billion Well Spent?

By end of the year, eMarketer pegs the amount US brands will have spent on social ads at $4.1 billion.

How much of that will be considered "well spent"?

Budgets for paid social ads are on the rise. A recent study conducted by Digiday found that 64% of US advertisers plan to increase their social ad spend this year.  

social advertisingThat’s welcome news for the industry. But most marketers plan to increase their budgets slightly (about 1% to 10%), suggesting many are still testing the waters.

The sheer number of social media users may rival the populace of the world’s largest countries, but dollars are moving over relatively slowly. Many marketers are still wrapping their heads around social. Until they do, their bets will be modest.

There are steps anyone putting money down on social ads should take – not only to ensure success, but also to build a case for continued investment in social marketing. Here are three of them.

Know What You Want
A common problem in social marketing is many people don’t set clear goals. Before you launch social ads or social campaigns, you should be able to define your objectives. Are you trying to engage or convert? Is the goal to build up a fan base or drive sales?

Knowing what you want to accomplish will help determine whether an ad is enough, or whether you need a social campaign to support it.

Be Mobile Ready
Facebook has 680 million monthly active users on mobile devices. 60% of Twitter's active user base tweet from a mobile device. To truly be a social marketer, you need to be mobile. 

If you plan to do social advertising, think about how it will appear and function on a mobile screen. The same is true for social campaigns. You need to consider how your campaign will look and feel on a mobile device. Go into your planning and optimizing with a “mobile first” mentality. 

Provide a Path
Social ads aren’t a lone billboard on an empty highway. The goal isn’t just to be seen, but to give the viewer a clear path to follow. Often times, just pitching a product with a tagline isn’t enough. You’ll need to entice the consumer to a more exciting and compelling environment where basic questions are answered and products are displayed.

Think about whether you need a social campaign, and not just an ad, to pull this off. Your goal should be to create an engaging experience that ultimately entices the consumer to take another step. Before you go live, you should know, step by step, the process you want fans to go through.

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