Getting Social Media Ads Right: How to Create Ads that Convert

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social media ads

Let’s face the tough truth: marketers find it harder and harder to get into their target audiences’ newsfeeds in light of Facebook’s recent algorithm changes.

Although the platform is bringing back the main reason why it was created—that is, to create meaningful social interactions—it does pose a threat to brands that have been using Facebook.

In fact, this update led to a 20% drop in page engagements, which affects even the biggest publishers on the platform.

If you are experiencing this on Facebook, there’s no doubt that other social media channels are on their way to doing the same— or what if they already are?

Now is not the right time to panic. We’re here to tell you that there’s still hope, and we’ve got solutions to address this pressing issue.

5 Ways To Plan Your Social Media Ads For Better Conversions

Social media advertising is not as easy as creating content and promoting them.

There are, however, many strategies you can apply to improve your ads and convert leads to customers:

1. Know your Campaign Objectives & Choose the Best One

Before you start running any campaigns, you first have to identify why you’re doing it in the first place. If you have no execution strategy, details are sure to fall through the cracks.

Know what your campaign objectives are. Are you looking at improving your brand awareness, finding potential customers, driving traffic to your website, or improving the sales of your product or service?

No matter what you’re trying to accomplish, just remember: you can’t put up a fight without knowing what you’re fighting for.

2. Choose your Social Platforms

Now that you know what your advertising goals are, it will be easier for you to determine the specific social platforms that would help promote your business.

The first thing you have to do is to identify your target audience: their age, location, sex, income, educational level, personal needs, interests, and other factors that may drive them to buy your products or services.

Next, you have to find out where your target audience is and how active they are on a certain platform. For instance, although Facebook has more than 1.3 billion users, you are likely to find a younger audience on Instagram and Twitter.

3. Find the commonality among your Target Audiences

You can’t easily target your audience and engage them on social media, despite using different tools. This is why it’s important to find the best trade-off that will help you target your audience more effectively.

On top of knowing and understanding the demographics of your network, you also have to know their specific interests, buying behaviors, and other intentions related to your brand.

Then, on your chosen platforms, control the settings of your audience targeting and aim for users that follow your ideal customer’s demographics and psychographics.

4. Optimize your social bidding strategy

When optimizing your social bidding strategy, you don’t just put your money upfront. You have to know how to play the game.

Keep your bids to a minimum to start with, as the costs can easily get way too high without you noticing it. Here’s a simple way to do the math, according to SproutSocial:

Total Cost: Total clicks x average cost per click (i.e. 100 clicks x $1 = $100 cost)

Total Conversions: Total clicks x conversion rate (i.e. 100 clicks x 1% conversion rate = 1 conversion)

Just remember that not all bidding strategies work for everyone, so it’s best if you study what works for you.

We suggest that you stay in the middle to see mid-range impressions vs paying the most to see the highest number of engagements.

5. Don’t stop there—do it again from the start even if you’re getting the results you expected

Times change, and you can’t always expect to get the same results using the same strategy.

Remember that your target audience preferences evolve over time, and there’s no guarantee that your social media efforts will always work for the same group.

Keep evaluating your content, update your landing pages to improve your website, and more importantly, understand the behavior of your target market.

Keep up with the trends and never stop learning new things. After all, there’s no way to find out than actually doing it.

Here’s the important part: Where should you advertise and how do you go about it?

We Are Social estimates that 3.196 billion people worldwide are on social media. To help you stand out in an ocean of users, here’s how you can effectively utilize each platform:

Facebook

Remember that you are competing against Facebook’s new algorithm, plus the continuously growing number of businesses using the platform (now more than 70 million).

The challenge then is for you to know how to create Facebook ads that not only catch the eyes of your customers but also translate to sales.

To create Facebook ads, you have to first set up an ad account to settle your billing information and pay for a Facebook ad.

You can choose from different campaign types, such as pay per engagement, pay per click or traffic, and pay per conversion.

Once you have an ad account, you can start posting various marketing materials to connect with your audience and engage them. Make the most out of your budget by promoting your page and website through valuable content.

What works best for Facebook is publishing engaging, visually-appealing content through images, infographics, and videos—but you have to make this look as authentic as possible.

Also, study the best times to post on Facebook to ensure that your posts will reach its target audience.

Twitter

BusinessInsider tells us that 336 million people are actively using Twitter monthly. This is another great place to advertise. On top of its millions of active users, the use of hashtags can also help boost your online presence.

To create Twitter ads, you have to create your campaign and ad group. You will then have an option to come up with a new tweet or pick a past tweet to start advertising.

The best way to make good use of your Twitter ad budget is to promote simple, high-quality content and do not try to sell right away.

What’s good about it is that your ad can blend in naturally with other tweets on a user’s timeline, which then increases your chances of engagement and click-through.

Also, make sure that you use royalty-free images or produce your own visual content.

Instagram

Instagram is, by far, the fastest-growing social media platform today. This is also the best platform to use if you are targeting people between 18 and 29 years old.

For this demographic, the way to their hearts is to publish visually-appealing content.

Instagram now makes it easier for brands to sell their goods and redirect users to the website.

Just remember that when setting up your ads, focus on developing custom audiences based on your followers’ list, pixel tracking, your email list, or any group that helped increase your engagement.

Also, don’t forget your hashtags and the right time to post.

Pinterest

If you have an e-commerce store, using Pinterest is the right decision. In fact, 93% of its users use the website to plan purchases, while 96% of them use it to gather information about products they are interested in.

Creating exciting, visually-stimulating, and creative pins will help you blend seamlessly with other boards. Your post should not only be creative, it should also include conversational descriptions to encourage engagement.

Moreover, through promoted pins, you can successfully introduce your brand and use different advertising features. Luckily, Pinterest is not just a social media platform but also a search engine.

So study their algorithm and strategize well to optimize your pins better.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the best platform to find most business professionals; it’s also a great avenue to find leads.

You can choose from different types of LinkedIn ads, such as self-service ads, LinkedIn text ads, LinkedIn display ads, LinkedIn marketing partner ads, dynamic ads, and video ads.

Once you have chosen the type of ad, you can start setting up your account and creating a campaign.

To utilize your budget well, use only the best LinkedIn practices like creating eye-catching headlines and writing from the audience’s perspective. You should also provide clear, strong, and engaging calls to action.

Don’t be afraid to show business figures, as the LinkedIn community is most likely looking for it.

However, remember that you won’t get as many clicks and engagements here as you do with Facebook since most of the audiences on the platform don’t have the luxury of time to be online.

If these C-level professionals and key decision-makers find value in your brand, then you’ll win their loyalty.

Wrap up

It entails time to get social media advertising right, especially since the digital world is evolving by the minute.

What you have to remember is that no matter which platforms you are using, make sure that you keep your strategies aligned with your business goals.

Know the right timing, the right audiences, and the right content to publish; you’ll then find yourself getting the metrics you want and the sales you’re after.

Do you find these tips useful? Let us know in the comments section below!

Naida Alabata is an entrepreneur in the Philippines. She’s a content marketing specialist at Avaris and Grit PH who opts to share her expertise and knowledge in branding, business development, conversion optimization, and digital marketing. Follow her on twitter @alabatanaida

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