As a small business owner, you have a limited advertising budget. One of the best options is social media ads, but it can be hard to know what platforms offer the best exposure to your ideal client.
That being said, you don’t want to be left on the sidelines because you don’t know where to begin. The reason social media advertising provides an excellent tool to supplement your existing inbound marketing or boost your entire advertising strategy is that it offers hyper-focused buyer personas. Here we show you how to choose the best social platforms by considering your marketing goals and tapping into the right buyer personas.
You Don’t Need to Advertise on All Social Media Platforms
Don’t concern yourself with throwing money at every single social platform. Remember, each platform appeals to different audiences, so doing them all is not a simple, one-size-fits-all answer. Instead, you need a customized solution designed to drive your social media advertising strategy. And the way you do this is to use the right platform for your specific buyer personas. Your buyer personas and marketing goals determine which channels will help your advertisements gain more traction. You don’t want to waste money on the ones that won’t make an impact. That means you have to research the platforms to understand which ones align with your overall marketing goals.
Base Your Social Media Advertising Around Your Buyer Personas
Buyer personas create profiles of your ideal customers, but it takes research and data to help build your buyer personas. You really can’t make smart marketing decisions without understanding buyer personas, as they help you improve the quality of leads your social media marketing generates. Instead of being too broad using things like demographics, you focus on far more detailed information such as pain points, customer journey, how leads find you, motivations, etc.
All this information drills down into more precise targets so you attract higher value visitors more likely to not only convert but also continue to generate more revenue over time. These achievements occur because with a deeper understanding of your audience, you can create more effective social media content, understand the platforms where it should appear, and even identify the best stages to reach out to each persona during their customer journey.
What Social Media Platforms Fit Your Buyer's Persona?
Facebook: A Nice All-Around Choice
Facebook can’t be ignored. With close to 2 billion daily active users, it ranks as one of the top platforms, with a large percentage of companies including it in their advertising and marketing plans for 2022. And you should be one of them for three reasons:
- Facebook has a high conversion rate averaging 9.2%. It allows you to create a buyers’ journey thanks to powerful targeting tools giving you a better ROI.
- Facebook has mass appeal across all industries when you use its ad management tools. It allows you to take advantage of your buyer personas as Facebook has built a very sound and targeted audience tool to empower marketers to succeed.
- Facebook is eCommerce friendly, providing a platform for finding and shopping products for 15% of its users. For eCommerce businesses, you can increase conversions by targeting the right audience.
That said, there are cases where Facebook isn’t as useful especially if you don’t have a good grasp on your target audience. Since a major draw of Facebook is its targeting, you won’t see the results you want if you really don’t know where to begin with your audience. In this case, it’s not that you shouldn’t ever use Facebook.
It’s just that you should have it waiting in the wings until your research and ad campaign data tells you more about your audience. Then you can use Facebook and see what the algorithms tell you about fine-tuning your pre-existing target groups.
Instagram: eCommerce’s Best Friend
Although Instagram pales in comparison to Facebook when it comes to daily users, it still has about 500 million. When targeting younger audiences Instagram is also a good choice as 62.7% of its global users are between 18 and 34. But where it really comes in handy is if you are an eCommerce or retail business as 70% of shopaholics say this is their favorite app for finding new products. If you want to sell products, this very visual tool is shopping-focused with three benefits:
- Instagram continues to introduce new shopping features including shopping live streams. One survey found it ranked second for the best ROI in 2021. Instagram Shopping allows you to create a catalog of products for users to view and choose to purchase right from their feed with Checkout. They can also click your website link to make a purchase or explore. 87% of Instagram users say influencers inspire their purchases which brings us to point #2.
- If you use influencer marketing, Instagram is the most popular and most effective trend tool with the highest ROI in 2021. Instagram’s focus on images has seen a rise in micro-influencers, making it custom designed for your partnerships. They even offer tools to help you search for possible partnerships once you get a knack for the platform including searching your followers and hashtags.
- If you are an eCommerce business with a knack for creating exceptional, effective visual content Instagram is an excellent choice. Each month over 130 million users tap on an Instagram Shopping post. Their new Shop discovery tab helps non-followers find you, showing users the products that make sense based on their behavior.
The ongoing theme here is that this is a B2C tool. Even if you sell products as opposed to services, you won’t find a B2B audience with this channel. Also, if you either lack the skills to create engaging visuals or don’t have the time to keep your posts up to date, you won’t do well on Instagram. However, if you are a small eCommerce business owner, it is well worth the time to learn how to use the tool and find someone to help you create impactful visual content.
YouTube: Video Rules the Internet World
That brings us to YouTube. With over 2 billion monthly users it continues to outpace Facebook, especially with the younger crowd. In fact, YouTube reaches the 18 to 24 group more than any TV network in a world obsessed with binge-watching TV series. Although video production might feel too foreign to consider YouTube right now, it’s time to figure out a way to add it to your marketing strategy for 2022. 30% of marketers plan to do just that.
Remember it’s not just about creating video, but also placing ads to get in front of the right audience. There are three reasons 30% of marketers intend to spend the bulk of their budgets producing YouTube video content:
- YouTube is a powerful tool to help build brand awareness. If this is one of your goals for 2022 you can develop credibility and authenticity with engaging video to establish your expertise, build trust with free information and help your audience solve problems.
- Sophisticated targeting makes YouTube a good choice to reach your audience, so your ads are strategically placed.
- YouTube also helps you optimize your videos to drive more traffic to your website. You can create keyword-driven titles, descriptions, tags and categories to increase the visibility of your channel. In turn you expand your viewers who again get directed to your site for more information.
As with Facebook, you need to understand your audience if you want your YouTube efforts to work for you. So again, once you have a better handle on your audience you can start using the platform’s sophisticated targeting options to increase your reach.
Choosing Social Media Advertising Platforms for the Highest ROI
Of course, you also have to consider your ROI. The top ROI generating platform for 2021 was Facebook. That explains why 25% of social media marketers will include Facebook in 2022. That’s more than any other platform. Other platforms include Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and TikTok which all focus more on short-form video, probably due to TikTok’s instant sensation. However, you need to understand the audience and how marketers define ROI.
Therefore, your goals have to come into play when determining what ROI you are seeking. Engagement? Leads? Brand awareness? Thought leadership? Although it gets complicated, you can narrow down your choices with these steps:
- Establish your paid advertising goals
- Invest some of your resources into experimenting with new platforms to see how they work if you have the budget to spare
- Make sure you don’t get attracted to the new, shiny platforms that make no sense for your business no matter how popular they become
- Stick to the tried and true
Although it’s tempting to jump on the latest social media platforms to beat your competitors to the punch, you always have to keep your audience in mind. While experimenting is fine when you have the money for it, most small businesses don’t have that luxury. You want to find the platforms that are tried and true, so you continue to benefit from marketing over the longer term.
So What Social Media Platforms Should Your Business Market Towards?
At the end of the day, it’s your marketing goals and buyer personas that drive your social media advertising strategy. Therefore, you can’t overlook the importance of analyzing your campaign metrics and research. The only way you can know which social media platforms are right for you is to use your goals, buyer personas and performance on past campaigns to identify the best social media advertising opportunities.
Are you wondering how you can take your social media strategy to the next level? At StructureM we offer social media solutions catered directly to your company’s needs. Contact us today and let us help you come up with a plan!