When it comes to social media (paid) advertising, there are a wide variety of options for businesses to target their prospective buyers. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and even Snapchat might provide your business with unique opportunities to get in front of a relevant audience and convert them into paying customers. Assuming you know who your ideal customer is, let’s dive into a variety of ways that you can reach them. These strategies can be used by local and nationwide companies.

Local and National Social Media Targeting

One of the key components to Internet marketing success is providing a personalized experience. From email to social media ads, people want relevant content. The good news is that social media allows businesses with the ability to tailor their advertising to individuals due to the large amount of personal information published by your prospects. Facebook is by far the most advanced tool for advertising through social media, so most businesses will want to start with their Ad Manager dashboard.

1. Attracting New eCommerce and Retail Customers

Facebook’s offer ads are some of the more underutilized objectives within their Ads Manager. They’re the perfect fit for a young eCommerce or brick and mortar retail company. This ad type has been around since 2012 and just recently received an update to expand its appeal.

Unlike coupon websites, Facebook won’t ask your customer to purchase the coupon (which has its pros and cons). This also means that you won’t be splitting the revenue with Facebook either. Your only cost is a lower margin and the Facebook advertising. This is a great way to attract new customers, and generate buzz directly on the largest social network in the world. You can start your Facebook targeting by selecting ads that reach people who shop your online competitors or have shown interest (Like) brands that are similar to your company.

2. Businesses that Thrive on Trade Shows

The trade show circuit can be cost prohibitive for many small businesses. Sometimes you need help following up on potential business, and other times you can’t even make it to the trade show. Depending on the typical demographics of your trade shows, you should be able to use a combination of Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat advertising. When it comes to targeting a specific area, few advertising options compare to Snapchat (this is especially important as growth in the 25-34 age group is exploding).

Whether you can make it to the event or not, you can create a Snapchat On Demand Geofilter, draw a geofence around the conference center, and have your very own filter show up during the conference. Since most conferences use an official hashtag, you can use Twitter to advertise to people on Twitter using or following the conference hashtag. This allows you to place a relevant native ad on Twitter in the middle of the conversation. If you’re using Facebook, you can target people who recently visited (traveled through) the conference center, and narrow it down to specific demographic and behavioral targeting preferences to reach people who most likely went to the conference.

Ideally, you create a connection with your prospect that makes them say, “Oh cool, they were there too!”

3. Narrowing Your Targets

One of the major mistakes we see with small businesses (other than just clicking the Boost button on a Facebook post), is that they try to cast a net way too wide to drive any real results on a limited budget. Whether you’re targeting international or just in the Atlanta area, you can narrow your Facebook advertising audience further to get in front of potential buyers.

For example, we break our targeting into multiple levels. On the top level, we start by targeting middle and upper management within the United States.

On the second level, we narrow the audience to management within a small business + a certain industry we’re targeting. Those are all demographic categories that we can target by, so we also like to add in a behavior or maybe an Interest.

For our third level of narrowing down our audience, we might target by people who make marketing purchases or by people who watch Shark Tank or read Gary Vaynerchuk books. At this point, we’re weeding out a significant amount of people that might not be the best fit for our company or our advertising dollars at this time. It also means that we are serving ads that might be more interesting to them.

4. Reengaging Your Current and Previous Customers

Every business book and blog in the world will tell you that it’s significantly less expensive to sell to current or past customers than gaining new ones. If you’re building a customer database, you can do more than just text and email to keep your brand in front of your audience. With the information you collect, you can directly import your database to Facebook to deliver ads just to your customer database.

It’s even easier when you use Atlanta based Mailchimp to import your list. By creating a custom audience based on your email database, you can deliver special offers or news to people who have already had a buying experience with your brand. This is a great way to increase upgrades or encourage buyers to come back for new products.

When you pair social media ads with your email campaigns, your special promotions can be significantly more successful because you can keep your company in front of your customer.

5. Retargeting Your Website Visitors

One of the more cost effective ways to pull new business is to retarget your website visitors with ads. Most of us visit certain pages on a website if we’re interested in a service or product. It could be a t-shirt you’re selling or a page outlining your consulting services. Consumers today take a longer time to make a purchasing decision because we put in more time to research our decisions. This is especially true if you’re B2B.

Retargeting with Facebook (and Google AdWords too) can help you stay in front of a prospect even when they leave your sales page. For many of you, this might mean getting someone to come back to your website to purchase your book, consulting services, or custom made trousers. All of this happens by using a code on your product page that tags and identifies the user, and then delivers a relevant advertisement in the Facebook ad network reminding them to finish the purchase process.

Keys to Social Media Advertising Success

The key to social media advertising is creating relevant experiences for your target customer. If you can make them say, “Oh, I love that!” or “I could really use help with this” then you might have a new customer. As the sales process continues to grow in number of touch points before a prospect converts to a customer, social advertising gives your sales team a scalable way to gain exposure and close sales faster.

If you’re struggling with your social media advertising, audit your strategy and find where you might be missing the mark. Is it your targeting, your creative, timeliness, or all of the above? Adapt, an let social media advertising help your business gain exposure and influence to gain new customers.

Leave a Comment