Getting people to come to your website is one of the biggest hurdles a company can face. Advertising your company on the internet, though a newer form of advertising, is one of the best ways to acquire new leads and new customers. But how does advertising online work? Where do you focus your efforts? How much does it cost? Preparing your plan is the key to a good marketing campaign.
Paid Traffic vs. Organic Traffic
Organic traffic, because it costs nothing to obtain, is always ideal. Remember, though, you get what you pay for. Organic traffic is unpredictable. It can bring in a huge number of prospects and customers in one week, and nothing for months. If Google changes it’s algorithm or your competition has a big launch, your numbers could dip way down. With paid traffic, it’s much easier to keep a steady flow of incoming views because you are guaranteed to get eyes on you. Additionally, the better your paid traffic, the better your organic traffic will become. When people click through to your website from your paid traffic, it will boost your rankings in Google’s algorithm and therefore boost your chances of getting found organically.
Where to Find Your Traffic
Finding out where your target market spends their time online is key to your advertising plan. You want to go where the money is. Which place is right for you may differ from business to business, but Facebook and Google are usually a good start, since they make up 80% of traffic–more than everywhere else that we’ll cover combined.
Think of Google like the yellow pages. People will go to Google with a goal in mind. They know what they’re looking for. Businesses can “bid” on (SEO) to increase their ranking on Google to be found first
If Google is yellow pages, Facebook is a billboard. You don’t go on Facebook to see ads, much like you don’t go on a car ride to see billboards, but both happen. Businesses can pay Facebook to have their ads appear to their chosen target market. With Facebook, you can invest as little or as much as you like while still expanding your reach.
Continuing the comparisons, YouTube is television. The top metric for YouTube is minutes watched, so their goal is to keep you watching as long as possible. At the beginning, end, and sometimes middle of videos, YouTube will play an ad for the viewer. While this can get annoying to the viewer, the ads are targeted so you know you’ll reach the right people.
Well-Executed Digital Advertising
Now that we’ve established that paid traffic is your best (and most cost-effective) way to get traffic, as well as how Google, Facebook, and YouTube can be used for paid advertising, let’s look at how to create ads that will attract customers. How do you know what kind of ads to run and who to focus them on? There are two concepts to think about here, the customer value journey, and “temperature”.
Customer Value Journey
We’ve already talked at length about the customer value journey, so we won’t go into it too much, but it’s important to remember to be full-funnel when keeping the CVJ in mind. Where are the customers in their value journey? How can you easily transition them from one stage to the next?
At each stage of the CVJ, the customers have a different relationship with you. Think of it like a game of “hot or cold”, where the closer the customer is to making a purchase, the “warmer” they’re getting. To begin with, they’re always “cold”. Slowly, though, they begin to “warm up” to you, until they become “hot”.
Five Elements of a High-Performing Campaign
Now that we know who we’re wanting to attract, it’s time to figure out what makes a great campaign. There are five elements to a good, high-performing ad campaign:
The offer is not the product, your offer is more than that. It’s the unique combination of your product/service, any bonuses/add-ons, including all the details of the promotion:
- How it’s being delivered
This is the starting point for your ad campaign which all other elements will be based around. The offer must be solid and enticing enough to the customer, or nothing else will matter.
Now that you have your offer solidified, it’s time to develop your copy. This is the message in your campaign, and encapsulates any written elements that may be included. Your copy should be clear, compelling, engaging, and let the benefits stand out. Have a strong emotional hook, show the problem, then offer your solution.
The creative is the fun part, where you get to make your copy look pretty. This is when you put in any graphic elements, beit pictures, graphs, videos, etc. that enhance your copy. Remember, your copy is what contains the offer, so it shouldn’t be outdone by the visuals. The creative grabs attention, the offer keeps it.
Like a bloodhound, your prospect is sniffing out whether to invest in your product/service. If they get confused and thrown off their trail, it can be difficult to get them back. In your campaign, make sure you are using similar wording, similar creative, and always the same offer.
Targeting is important because you want to make the right offer at the right time to the right person. Even a great offer from Sephora won’t entice a football player to buy eyeshadow. Keeping this in mind, there are two main things to remember: Be as specific as possible with who you are targeting, and make the right offer for the right level of “target temperature” they are.
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