Homerun Nievera, Negosentro.com | One of the best ways for startups to get exposure, generate sales and to start building their brand is to set up a paid advertising campaign on social media. The problem is that many startups don’t really know how to create successful campaigns. It’s easy to run up thousands of dollars in losses if you don’t know what you’re doing. Here are some helpful tips that startups can use to take advantage of paid social media campaigns and see a healthy return on investment.
Tip #1: Spend a Lot of Time Targeting the Right Audience
Social media platforms offer many audience targeting options to help you hone in on your best customers. To make sure you get your campaign right, invest a good amount of time to making sure that you know the exact demographics of your ideal customers and have a good tracking system through a marketing dashboard or spreadsheet. Facebook, for example, allows you to target by age, gender, education, industry, income and more. Here’s a full list of all the targeting options. The more you can get specific on who your target audience is, the higher the chance of you getting a solid return on investment.
Tip #2: Master One Social Media Platform Before Moving to Another One
There are many social media platforms but you want to focus on one that best suits your business. For example, a wedding business will probably do well with Pinterest. A B to B business will do well with LinkedIN. Think about which platform would allow you to reach your best customers. Then, maximize your profitability and scale it as much as possible before deciding to move on to other platforms. Your decision to go to other social media sites will also be based on how much free cash flow you have to invest.
Tip #3: Focus on Using Sponsored Content to Generate Leads
Don’t just rely on the display ads on Facebook and LinkedIN. Another great way to target your customers is through sponsored content. Rather than trying to get their attention with an ad, create a great piece of content that is relevant to them and offers them a lot of value. For example, create an article about enterprise data loss prevention if you are digital security firm. Then, target users that need your service and use the content to generate leads instead of using the ad space to sell the product. AdEspresso has some great examples on how to use sponsored content and other ads to promote on Facebook.
Tip #4: Create a Viral Marketing Campaign Around Your Content
If the bigger vision is to build a brand and get the word out there about your business, it might be a smarter idea to promote your content in an effort to generate likes (or retweets, pins, etc.) and get people to share it to their network. The trick to making this work is to make sure you target the right audience and have the content really jump out at them. Funny videos, shocking news, unique presentations and engaging content can all turn viral if the content is relevant and of value to the target audience.
Tip #5: Be Smart About How You Spend Your Budget
While you may want to get a lot of traffic to your website, it’s better to go slow and test multiple ads. Entrepreneur has some great tips on getting the most out of Facebook ads that applies to almost all the other social media channels. Set a fairly low budget to test multiple ads and track the results. It’s often cheaper to bid by CPM than by CPC. Once you find a creative that works, scale it up to generate more revenue. Also, don’t assume that the same ad will work for different audiences. You have to test and track your campaigns extensively if you want to maximize your budget.
Those tips should help you get the most out of your paid social media campaigns. How you approach your social media advertising campaigns depends on what your goals are. Ideally, you want to try different approaches like sponsored lead generation ads, InMail ads (LinkedIN), and paid ads to start a viral content marketing strategy to see what works best in generating the high ROI and revenue stream.
Homerun Nievera is the publisher of Negosentro.com and WorldExecutivesDigest.com. He has interests in several tech and digital businesses as director and chief strategist.