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Social Media Paid Advertising – What are you paying for?

Thu, 13/02/2014 - 16:54

Recently, independent research has discovered interesting, if horrific, findings in regards to the results of advertising spend on Facebook. Many articles raising the controversy exist, such as this one on the BBC and this video by Derek Muller that went viral in the last week. These highlight the details of the issues surrounding Facebook advertising; with the discoveries concluding that paying Facebook for promoted pages versus the notorious click farms yield you the same results. Your thousands of “likes” often come from false user accounts in developing countries with no user engagements that actually have detrimental effects for your social media campaign.

Understanding what your Social Media Campaign’s Goal is

Facebook advertising campaigns are aiming to promote your pages to targeted individuals who fall within your product demographic with the aim of securing a “like” from these users.

By liking a page, users are subscribing to updates from the page to be displayed in their timeline, and potentially interact with the product and the brand to enhance CRM. “Likes” are often the benchmark of social media campaigns, with companies measuring “growth” and efficiency of their social media by number of “likes” .Therefore agencies and marketers offering “likes” as a sales performance, often promote their clients through paid Facebook advertising, which is getting almost no engagement. With the low engagement, the Facebook algorithm kicks in and the posts are shared less as the quality score decreases.

While “likes” are the gateway to communication through social media channels, they draw a very real similarity to “follows” on Twitter, with huge percentages being bots -again sometimes being bought by companies and marketers to bolster their reach. Unfortunately the reach gained is to an account that has no purchase intent for your goods or services.

Courtesy of: The Oatmeal

Where should you place your effort?

It’s easy to lose sight of tangible goals when faced with the overwhelming amount of options for your business to be seen and heard.

While social media is an avenue to inform your community (One Way communication), engagement is the key factor of any campaign, turning your community into a wealth of information for business development to improve your business. Planning a content calendar-in short having something to say to your customers, is crucial to your social activity paying a dividend. Interesting and relevant content will be shared, questions answered and elements that make a difference to your customers will be praised.

Successful social, allows open communication, which can lead to improved sales, client loyalty and even create a free marketing team that will endorse your product, increasing your market reach. “Likes” don’t buy products, and followers don’t always reply, so understanding where your metrics for success are focused, can make the difference between having numbers or customers at the end of your marketing communications. Know what you’re paying for, what your agency is offering and how this affects your company’s bottom line before you sign that contract.

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