Social Media Advertising for Businesses

Social media advertising is still in its infancy and accounts for only 1-10% of a business’ advertising budget. But, all this is set to change, drastically. In 2012 businesses spent $ 4.7 billion on social media advertising. Experts say that by the year 2017 this number is conservatively expected to increase to $ 11 billion. Of course there is a better chance of the predicted number rising higher because globally social media users are spending hours at end on their favored networks.

Some studies such as that by Experian Marketing Services indicate that for every hour that Americans spend online, they spend 16 minutes on social media sites. According to Nielsen every day, the average US adult spends 11 hours on electronic media. The fact that one can log into their social media site even when they are away from their computer, through a cell phone or tablet makes it easier for users. The aim of good advertising is to place adverts where their target audiences are likely to see it often and respond to it. Social media advertising should be an integral part of any business’ marketing campaigns, and here is why:

Elicit a Response

One of the greatest advantages of social media advertising is that a business’ can design and place ads where their target audiences are bound to see them. Social media networks such as Facebook allow companies to target their viewers based on their demographic profile. Therefore a business can choose to place ads based on the location of its customers, age, gender and interests. This also makes the advertising more interesting and relevant for the customers, and making it more likely for them to respond to the brand’s call to action.

Social Acceptance

Social acceptance is one of key reasons why social media sites are so popular. People not only want to connect with their friends on this virtual space, they also want to be accepted. Quite often they follow trends because they consider them to be socially accepted. Customers are likely to share information about a social media advertising campaign with their friends if they consider the brand to be a popular one.

People like to ask their friends for advice when they are shopping. They may also choose to read the reviews and experiences of other customers. This makes social media a very fertile ground for marketers and advertisers. Customers are willing to share and discuss brands that they like. In fact, social sharing has become so important that research by the e-tailing group indicates 94% retailers are choosing to place relevant buttons on their online stores. Facebook storefronts can also feature buttons that will allow customers to share their interest in a product. In 2013 Adobe concluded that social sharing is one of the most effective social marketing techniques of improving conversions.

Unique Shopping Experience

The interesting thing about social media advertising is that businesses can also choose to sell their products on the social commerce sites. This essentially means that the time between viewing an advertisement and buying the product is minimized tremendously. A customer is more likely to buy a product when their interest in it is high.

How to use social media advertising effectively

Social media is essentially about establishing and maintaining relationships. This doesn’t pertain only to individuals but to businesses too. It is vital that a company take active interest in issues that are important to its customers.  This will help generate content that is appealing and relevant to the target audiences.

Brand Image

If a business has an established brand image, one that its customers relate to and identify easily, it needs to be reinforced on social media. For new and smaller businesses social media advertising offers an excellent way of building a brand identity and reputation.

Often a company may set up a facebook page and leave it unattended on weeks at end. Businesses need to post on a regular basis. The posts should be designed to elicit a response. Research indicates that people respond well to posts that include a picture or pose a question.

It is imperative that a business’ facebook page become one of the easiest ways to contact the business. Several businesses including KLM offer terrific customer service through their facebook page. In fact the page is so popular because of the manner in which queries and requests are handled that more and more passengers are choosing it as their preferred means of communication.  The Book a Trip and KLM Trip Planner make it possible for passengers to make their booking and manage them conveniently.

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