Social media campaigns are soaring in popularity, with almost all of the world’s top brands utilising the channel in one way or another. So how do you stand out from the crowd and reach your audience without alienating them? Chris Ward, UK MD Kenshoo, offers 10 tips to get the most out of this potentially lucrative platform…
1. Understand that Social is a different animal; it is not search or display. You need to realise that social sites such as Facebook are places where likeminded people get together to congregate and share. Therefore be realistic and define your goals accordingly. Everyone you encounter may not be actively seeking information like they are in search. So don’t put all your eggs in the direct response basket.
2. Prepare your infrastructure properly and take the time to ensure you have all the correct measurements. Choose the right technology partner to allow advanced tracking and automation of and reporting tasks. Without the ability to fully track your campaign, you will not be able to get the best results out of it.
3. Dedicate time and budget to build and test various targeting techniques. This is probably the biggest challenge. The trick is to make sure that you have a good mix between being very focused and also reaching out to a large enough audience that you can drive the required volume to meet your campaign goals.
4. Dedicate the time to optimise your messages to the audience you have found. Note, that in these online social environments, there are differences to the way your ads are displayed. For example, on Facebook, an image is usually the most dominant part of the creative. Make sure that image is something that will resonate with the specific consumer you are targeting.
5. Look for interaction between social and other online marketing channels. Use tools such as “path to conversion” reporting to understand how the social channels affect your overall activity. Did someone see your ad on Facebook and then search for your brand name on Google before buying your product? This will help you gain a better understanding of your audiences, as well as helping you to optimise your message and targeting.
6. Ensure that you are using a technology solution that allows you to use the information you gather to set an attribution model to reflect the true value of each engagement. In the previous example, both Facebook and Google should share credit for driving the sale. Constantly asses the value of your social campaign against other online channels and reallocate budget to maximize intended outcomes.
7. Don’t rest on your laurels. Constantly refresh your creative to avoid the decay factor, which is very common on Facebook. Keep your social assets up-to-date at all times, otherwise they are worthless.
8. Use the time-of-day and geo reports that your technology platform provides to optimise your campaign. Tie this in with the social specific reports and metrics like Facebook social impressions and social clicks. This will give you a full overview of the trending around your campaign.
9. Develop well-created and branded landing pages that are optimised towards your social audiences. In addition, ensure that you are using a technology platform that allows you to send information embedded in your advert URL that can be used to constantly customise the landing page – so that a 25 year old male from France for example lands on a page that he understands and that appeals to him.
10. Keep an open mind. Build a team that combines the analytical performance optimisation that search marketers have, with the target audience understanding that your creative team has. Constantly review your resources and approach and you will end up with the most effective and well-balanced social network advertising campaign.
By Chris Ward