Choices, Choices: Social Media vs. Internet Advertising
February 25, 2014
The advertising maze is so confusing. Should we advertise in newspapers? Or on radio? Television? Website? Facebook? Twitter?
It's easy to get confused but don’t let that intimidate you. Each venue has its strengths and weaknesses. But, if you know your audience and do the research, you can spend wisely.
Two ways to consider are Facebook and Internet Advertising.
From website ads to Facebook ad campaigns, there are a number of strong venues for reaching your customer right where their cursor lands.
We'll spotlight Facebook pages today and cover more venues in future articles.
First, let's look at Facebook. It has more than 400 million subscribers. It has the largest concentration of subscribers interacting on the web than anywhere else.
Facebook advertising has several advantages:
Reach: Potentially a much larger audience than any television advertising
Cheaper advertising: A company can buy ads for only a few hundred dollars and reach hundreds of thousands of people with one ad campaign.
Targeted advertising: You can pinpoint the audience you want, exactly, and send your ads to that audience's news feed or sidebar.
Add new 'Likes' or fans: Your targeted advertising can bring in new fans or likes for your Facebook page allowing you to interact with them and send to your website. This may increase traffic and sales.
Revise your ads: If an ad failed to reach the goals you had set with a particular ad, you can revise, add or delete text, add a new graphic-whatever you believe might help your ad get attention.
Reaches beyond your fans and likes: Your ad is not confined only to your friends and likes. It may also appear on the sidebars or news feeds of the friends of friends. Facebook ads may appear anywhere beyond your parameters, which is a good thing as it does not increase your cost and may increase traffic or sales.
Second, let's look at Internet Advertising. There are so many venues for advertising: online newspapers/magazines/radio and TV stations and websites. The list is endless.
Unlike Facebook advertising which is targeted, your company ads could be seen by anyone completely unrelated to your typical demographic or prospective audience. This doesn't mean, though, that there aren't advantages to spreading your advertising dollar around.
Here are some of the advantages to doing internet advertising (and avoiding the Facebook/social media venues):
Variety: Your company can be seen on a number of venues which may not be covered in social media. For instance, you may want to sell your women's clothing store ads on a newspaper site, a women's health care site and at a women's 5K running event site. All may reach your audience and bring in revenue.
Local support: You can advertise and support other local companies. Your ads can be seen in local venues. This helps with networking and in building a local customer base (if your product is sold in the area.)
Google Adwords: Google is not just a search engine anymore. It is a huge advertising vehicle which can promote your product using carefully placed keywords and key word phrases in your ads. Those ads are seen internationally and by hundreds of thousands of people. These ads are closely monitored and can be revised instantly.
Use of video: Videos are the rage and the SEO vehicle to carry your ads now. You can use videos in your ads in many venues to sell your product. These can be expensive or cheap depending on your method of photography and editing skills. Research this one before jumping in.
Wider geographical reach. Your ad can reach hundreds of thousands of prospects and bring in a large number of new clients all from one ad campaign on the right vehicle. The internet's reach is phenomenal and beyond anything that traditional advertising or even Facebook can match.
The worldwide web is not all that intimidating after all. Do the research and check with other businesses in your network. Find out what worked with them then do some test-marketing and see what works.