Do you want to use social advertising for your B2B business but you don't know where to start? This presentation provides an overview of the top three social advertising platforms: Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
Welcome! Excited to be here. Who’s currently using social advertising? Who wants to learn more?
Talk about three major social advertising platforms: Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn
For each, we’ll discuss generating awareness, leads and sales through social ads – today we’re not focused on growing your Likes on Facebook, your Twitter following or your LinkedIn Company Page followers.
Social advertising is big, and Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are the big three of social advertising, with Facebook far ahead of the pack. We’ll talk about all three platforms, why to use them, what they’re best used for, and give some tips on how to implement social ads in general.
All of the ads we’re covering are the kind of ads you can run yourself against targeted audiences, without sophisticated media buys or creative. It’s important to note that this type of advertising is all auction-based. If you’re familiar with Google AdWords, you know what that means – you are bidding against others who want to run ads at the same time to the same audience as you. This means: you’ll need to be flexible in your approach and targets you’ll want to allocate enough budget to really understand how each ad platform performs you’ll need to test and test and test
Testing in social advertising isn’t a one-time thing You’re going to test initially, then test again, then keep testing We call this “test and roll” – you’re constantly adjusting your ads based on what’s performing the best Constantly try new things: new visuals, wording, calls-to-action Refine your audiences, too – maybe new competitors have cropped up that you can target against, or there are new industry buzzwords to target
As with all advertising, social advertising does best with a strong call-to-action Incorporate a CTA into your copy and possibly your headline
Also: use all available assets. Ads with images always convert better than plain text ads. Don’t skip anything available within an ad.
Each of these three platforms has excellent analytics Use analytics to improve poorly-performing ads and further optimize good ones A/B test ads against each other – never run just one ad at a time, always run at least two (or more) targeting the same user group, so you can determine what ad copy, image and headline perform best
Facebook is still the top banana in social media. People of every demographic are on Facebook, and even if you don’t have a B2B presence (or you don’t pay much attention to it), you can still use Facebook Ads to target the right people for your product or service.
71% of all online adults use Facebook, making it the top social destination for adults. Targeting ads here means you’re reaching a huge proportion of the population, and the targeting is good enough that it can work for B2B marketers.
Facebook’s targeting is based in part on what users put in their profile, and also on what Facebook deems users’ interests You can also target based on a user’s relationship with another entity – with your competitors, for example, or relevant complimentary businesses While the targeting isn’t as business-specific as LinkedIn, through interests, behaviors and connections you can get pretty granular with your targets, and a test-and-roll strategy will help you refine even further
Today we’re focused on page post engagement, clicks to website, website conversions, and offer claims – things that you as a B2B marketer are most likely to want to do
Some of these ad types will require you to add a pixel – a small piece of tracking code – to your website. You’ll need it to track website conversions, in particular.
Also called “boost posts” – this is when you make a page update available to a broader audience, or ensure that it’s seen by your page fans. You pay when someone clicks, Likes, shares or comments on a post.
Given that less than 10% of most page fans see most status updates, boosting posts can be vital to the success of a Facebook page. You could boost posts that highlight special content from your site or a blog post. You’ll see engagement on the post as a result, plus also click-throughs if that’s what your content leads to.
You might boost posts only to your Facebook audience, to make sure that your opted-in fans see your content, or you might boost to a wider audience.
This is when you send traffic back to your site or blog. Engagement is a secondary benefit (but it does happen). You want to use clicks to website if you have an offer or something to sign up for, like an offer, a sweepstakes/promotion, or a survey – you can capture names and emails on the form on your site.
You pay when someone clicks on these ads.
This might look exactly like a Clicks to website ad, but it’s going to have a pixel added to the code of your site. That way you’re not just tracking clicks, you’re tracking all the way through to a form fill or even a sale. This helps you to better determine the ROI of your Facebook ads, and it’s highly recommended if you’re able to control your site enough to add the pixel to the offer or sales thank-you page.
You pay for clicks, but you can optimize based on conversions.
Offers work really well for special content or promotions, event tickets, or a discount. They’re best when they’re time-limited – people will opt-in if they feel there’s a deadline. When someone clicks on an offer, Facebook sends them an email with the details of how they should claim it at your site along with terms & conditions. You direct the user to the right place when you set up the ad.
You pay for these ads based on clicks to the Get Offer button.
Facebook ads are fairly low-cost, generally the least expensive of the three platforms we’ll cover today. We recommend testing with $250-$500 to start, allocated over a week or two, and across multiple ads and target groups. If you’re testing different types of ads, you may need even more budget. Maintaining a steady budget will help you overcome the ebb and flow of the bidding process.
On Facebook, you might bid between $$0.50-$3.00 per click. Average will probably be in the $1.00-$2.00 range but it could even be under $0.50. Test and roll to determine what works best for you.
Facebook has the most powerful analytics of all three platforms, but it’s not the most intuitive or easiest to use. You’ll get great data on impressions, clicks, click-through rates, costs, and which ad creatives work best. Test everything and never run just one ad at a time so you always have something to compare.
23% of adult internet users use Twitter, and the audience is very tech- and pop-culture savvy and heavy with users under 50.
There are five main categories of Twitter ads: Followers Website clicks or conversions Tweet engagements App installs or engagements Leads
We’ll cover website ads, tweet engagements and leads today, as they’re likely to be of the greatest interest to most B2B marketers
Although Twitter targeting is not as sophisticated as Facebook or LinkedIn, you can still get pretty granular to find the right audience for your product or service.
According to Twitter, 78% of executives use Twitter daily for business purposes, and they do so to stay up to date on trends, discover new tech, and stay up to date with peers and resources
Primary targeting is based on location; that’s the item Twitter has most reliably for most users. Gender and languages is less effective. Devices, platforms and carriers is very granular and may not be applicable to all businesses.
The more powerful targeting, but that which is slightly less specific, is targeting by keywords, followers (of someone else), or interests. Keywords and interests are similar to Facebook, and followers is based on the followers of the @handles you input. You could target the competitors or aspirational businesses – we find this very powerful for our clients.
Three main reasons B2B marketers like Twitter is because of the immediacy of goals that ads can drive. You can drive traffic to your site, create greater engagement with your Twitter content, or grow leads
Promoted tweets drive engagement with your Twitter content You can use existing tweets from your stream or create new ones You pay when users favorite, retweet, reply or click on a promoted tweet
This is a special ad unit that’s like an enhanced tweet, and it comes in a few different varieties with different sizes of images. You can even create a website card with a video or audio playing within it You can use these for special content, a promotion, a survey, or a special offer You can add a pixel to your site to track what users do once they get to your site You pay when users click on your card; if you use pixel tracking, it will help you refine your spend
Lead cards share your users’ info directly with you, so you can follow up with them You’ll get their name, Twitter handle and the email address associated with their Twitter account You pay when users click on the lead prompt and send you their information
Your Twitter ads budget can be capped daily, in total, and also by engagement. We recommend using daily budgets to keep control of your spending, and then choose Maximum Bid for pricing so you can set an upper limit for your per-engagement spend. You can test Twitter ads for a few dollars a day, but as with Facebook, you won’t really understand the results unless you spend $250-$500 over a week or two, or even more if you’re testing multiple audiences and multiple ads (which we recommend that you do). For all Twitter ads, you’ll pay in the $1.50-$10.00 range per engagement. This is a broad range, and it really depends on the audience you’re targeting.
Twitter’s ads dashboard provides pretty good analytics, and you can drill down pretty far to understand how your ad is performing across demographics, follower targets, locations, devices and more. You can also use Twitter’s ads dashboard to drill down into your Twitter account, even if you’re not currently running ads – it will tell you which tweets are performing, where your users are from and what their interests are, and more.
There are three categories of LinkedIn ads: Text ads (or video ads) Display ads LinkedIn Audience Network Sponsored InMail
Display Ads, Sponsored InMail and LinkedIn audience network ads are most often handled by a media buyer or ad agency. We’re going to focus on Text Ads, which are the most socially-targeted ads and which appear in users’ LinkedIn streams and pages, looking like LinkedIn content.
LinkedIn is, for many businesses, the best of the three platforms for B2B marketers. As you probably already know, it’s one of the best places to reach people – while they’re thinking about business. However, because only 28% of online adults are on LinkedIn, it doesn’t have nearly the overall reach of Facebook. You may be familiar with LinkedIn for recruiting or recruitment ads; today we’re going to talk about LinkedIn for lead generation and sales engagement.
While Facebook can give you industry/interest filters, LinkedIn is the only platform that can target by title, job function, and industry. This is extremely powerful for B2B marketers.
One of the reasons LinkedIn’s targeting is so superior is because it’s based on the info that users themselves provide – not on what the platform thinks they like or want to see. Therefore audience targeting is dead-on – and it’s often worth spending more, sometimes much more, to reach audiences on LinkedIn vs. Facebook or Twitter.
LinkedIn campaigns are usually set up to generate awareness, traffic or leads What your goals are will depend on the level of involvement your potential users will have with your product. For an expensive product, you’ll want to focus on leads. For a product that’s readily available, awareness may be enough. Traffic to your site can help drive thought leadership, blog traffic, and demos.
Ad targeting is about creating the right audience groups and aligning the right message to each LinkedIn suggest trying to get ~100,000 members per target group Divide or combine groups if necessary Even if you’re not targeting regionally, segment by country for best results If you or your company is active in LinkedIn Groups, that’s a great way to target
Targeting can be done through persona marketing and is tied to your goals – who is your ideal audience, how do they break down into affinity groups?
If your sales team is set up regionally, location is one way to start, and you might look to bring middle managers into a lead gen cycle such as a free demo offer or a newsletter signup.
If you want to generate awareness for thought leadership, you may want to target C-level execs and lead them to a white paper.
LinkedIn allows for targeting in any of these ways.
Text ads include an image, headline and copy They’re short and sweet, and very similar to Facebook ads Text ads are great for leading people to your site, offer, event or lead page Text ads usually appear on the right side of profile pages, and can sometimes appear, without the image, at the top of the homepage, Company pages, or Group pages
You can use text ads even if your company is not very active on LinkedIn (or not at all) – in most cases you’re leading people to something off of LinkedIn, so you can treat it like any other ad.
A second kind of text ad is a sponsored update. These are also quite similar to Facebook’s sponsored posts.
You won’t want to use them if your company is not already active on LinkedIn – they pull content in from your LinkedIn company page and display it to a broader audience. Sponsored updates are great for building your audience for your Company Page, and for featuring company content.
You can test LinkedIn with a very small budget, but we recommend allocating at least $500 to your first effort This will allow you to target different groups with different messages, and to test multiple ads per group You can set a limit on your budget by day, by ad, or overall The minimum daily budget is $10, but if you spend 25-$50 per day per ad group, you’ll have a very good idea of what’s working If you’re not getting traction on your ads, increase your bid but keep a lower daily limit – that way you’ll see what the market rate is without blowing your entire budget
On LinkedIn, you might bid between $1.00-$5.00 per click. Test and roll to determine what works best for you.
LinkedIn has pretty good analytics and there’s lots to monitor here. Pay close attention to your click through rates, cost-per-click and engagement percentage to determine which ads are performing the best.
Sprout Social is highly specific – they’ve headlined an ad based on the target group they’re going after
Use the word “Free” when you can, use CTAs for all ads This female business owners ad was targeted to me – I’m the founder/owner/CEO of my company, and I’m female….pretty basic targeting but you can’t get that in the other platforms
CommVault uses a classic problem/solution approach in their sponsored update
These resources are all available on the plaforms’ own sites – it’s info direct from the source. I think you’ll find each of these platforms is pretty easy to setup and use, and all three now have very good customer service for advertisers, through their help desks you can usually get answers within 24 hours or less.
Social Media Advertising Overview: Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn
Social Media Advertising:
Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn
April 15, 2015
Getting Started With Social Ads
• Easy and Effective Facebook Ads
• How Facebook Ads Work
• Grow Your Business With Twitter
• Twitter Advertising Blog
• LinkedIn Marketing Solutions
• LinkedIn Ads Playbook
• LinkedIn Guide to Sponsored Updates