Online advertising offers brands the opportunity to supplement their SEO strategies with high-performance adverts targeted to very specific audiences. To make full use of these channels, brands must devise strategies that work across multiple platforms.
Facebook Ads vs. Google AdWords
Google’s AdWords is the undisputed leader in PPC (pay per click) advertising, not least because Google is the most popular search engine in many key markets. Similarly, Facebook Ads is the go-to channel for social-media marketing, offering the large audiences, multiple advertising formats and strict budget control that similarly endear Google to marketers across the globe.
Despite their user similarities, Facebook Ads and Google Adwords target users very differently. AdWords uses keywords directed by user intent and search behaviours – as well as the bid value set by the marketer – as a way of determining the placement of an advert. In other words, it is governed by what people are searching for.
By contrast, Facebook Ads focuses on the who; it allows marketers to target users by demographic – using everything from current location through to age and interests. Unlike AdWords, Facebook Ads are displayed to an audience with no buying intent, meaning the two channels occupy very different roles in a paid advertising strategy.
Using both platforms in conjunction with each other allows brands to increase awareness of their services simultaneously among interested, non-motivated customers and those at point-of-sale.
Winning Advertising Strategies
With such different audiences, it is vital that marketers tailor their adverts to each platform. Here are four examples of strategies that make full use of the channel for which they were created:
1. The Personal Approach: Facebook Ads
Online reviews have the power to shape the journey to purchase. In fact, 90% of consumers rely on online reviews at some point. Since testimonials are known to influence customer perception and since Facebook Ads is designed to promote brand awareness, it’s a match made in heaven. Combine short, glowing reviews with eye-catching imagery to make a lasting impression on this platform.
2. Hijacking The News Cycle: Google AdWords
For most brands, the advantage of AdWords is its ability to catch people who are motivated to act. Not so for Ann Summers; the British adult retailer turned the platform on its head when she used AdWords to increase brand awareness by hijacking trending search terms. When a British Airways strike hit the news cycle in 2009 — grounding thousands of passengers in the run-up to Christmas — Summers responded by targeting users who were searching for information on the strike, with cheeky advertising copy and a related pun.
3. Getting Creative: Google AdWords
It is general practice for brands to target commonly misspelled search terms, since they offer both lower competition and relatively high traffic. This strategy tied in well with Snickers and its “You’re not you when you’re hungry” slogan. The brand used some clever coding to generate more than 25,000 misspellings for the top 500 search terms, showing users who slipped up on the keyboard a link to its microsite, www.yourenotyouwhenyourehungry.com. The advert boasted a click-through rate of 1.05 per cent and attracted nearly 6,000 visitors in the first two days.
4. Leveraging Every Advantage: Facebook Ads
Facebook prefers visual content and it’s not afraid to show it, saving the top spots in users’ news feeds for video adverts. These adverts don’t just get a more prominent position, either. Video ads are larger and have higher engagement rates. This begs the question, “Why wouldn’t your brand create a video ad?” To get the best return on your investment, target your video to your audience, keep it as short as possible and don’t forget to include a call to action.
Online Advertising Success
By devising creative advertising solutions that complement their wider marketing and SEO strategies, small brands can ensure they get the best return on their investment.