“Nobody counts the number of ads you run; they just remember the impression you make.”
— Bill Bernbach
Paid media is being carried out by a Paid Media Specialist and refers to any external marketing effort that involves paid ad placement; this includes Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, branded content, and display ads, but are not limited to, paid social media.
A good example of Paid Media is Facebook Ads that are being used by 90% of all the marketers in the world and a staggering 9million active advertisers on the Platform in Quarter 2 of 2020.
Organic inbound marketing efforts focus on consistent content creation to build subject matter expertise and to establish domain authority and page rankings on search engine results pages. This is being implemented by Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Specialists with the help of almost all of the Digital Marketing Team of a company.
These days getting your message in front of your target audience is made extra challenging by the sheer volume of competition. Businesses should consider magnifying the impact of these efforts with the strategic use of paid media.
So how does paid media positively affect your inbound marketing?
1. Paid Media can Fire up a new Inbound Marketing Program
Organic content marketing is a long-term game that requires consistent posting and can take months to affect website ranking on search engines.
With pay-per-click ads, coupled with the right bidding tactics and keyword targeting, you can certainly make headway in establishing domain ranking and authority much faster.
Paid Media efforts go hand in hand with organic Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), and it makes sense to optimise their use in tandem.
There are synergies between PPC and SEO as the former helps searchers find what they need faster, and with improved SEO comes a better response to your paid ads.
You will notice that even known brands appear in the Ads Placement of Google Search (on top of the Searched Queries) even though we can easily search them either by brand name or the keywords they are associated with.
Using both Organic and Paid Media on your marketing campaign is like building a fire with wood.
You can create a fire (Organic Search) into the wood (Content) without using gasoline (Paid Media), but it will take so much time and effort. Using Paid Media can shorten the learning curve and data analyzation thus giving you the upper hand to level up your inbound marketing game.
2. Obtain Crucial Keyword Data by Launching Paid Ads
Keyword discovery is a foundational aspect of building a strong search engine strategy.
Software such as Ahrefs and SEMrush are powerful tools that can help with keyword discovery.
Once you know the words and search terms your potential customers are using in searches, this gives you the direction you need to create findable and relevant content. Additionally, search engines will know where to display your ads.
When used concurrently with the Keyword Planner of Google Ads, this enables you to search for keywords, get historical statistics and traffic forecasts, and choose the right bidding strategy and budgets for your paid campaigns.
3. Target a Specific Audience in your Paid Media Campaigns
Thanks to advancements in technology and PPC ads, Inbound Marketers now have an arsenal of tools to laser-focus the targeting of specific audiences through a variety of parameters.
This ultimately maximises the effectiveness of the overall marketing campaign.
Demographic. Demographic targeting is a form of advertising where consumers are targeted based on information such as age, race, gender, geographic location, occupation, salary, and other statistics.
The reason behind this is the observation that people who share demographic characteristics are likely to be motivated to buy or consume products or services as well as respond to advertising similarly.
Case in point, observing different age groups will reveal that Millennials (people born between 1981 – 1996) prefer to consume advertising content on platforms like Facebook and Instagram, whereas Baby Boomers (people born between 1946 – 1964) are likely to prefer reading promotion send over email.
Behavioral. Behavioral targeting (also otherwise known as online behavioral advertising) is a method used by advertisers and publishers to display relevant ads and marketing messages to their audience based on web browsing behavior.
This form of advertising relies on behavior such as the amount of time spent on a website, pages visited, previous search terms used, ads, content, and buttons clicked date of last visit, and other interactions pertinent to their on-site interactions.
Contextual. Opposite to the approach of behavioral targeting that is user-focused, contextual targeting is a means of advertising content that is delivered based on the context of a particular page.
In place of monitoring user activity, ad servers scan and categorise web pages so that there is a direct connection between the contents of a page and the content of an ad delivered. When a user visits a particular page, this sends a request to the ad server that matches the data accordingly.
Relevant ad content is delivered to the intended audience but without the same dependence on personal data and user monitoring as behavioral targeting.
4. Provide Traffic for A/B Testing
Also known as Split-Testing, this is a method for testing which version of an ad, landing page, or any other element of a marketing campaign performs better.
A/B Testing is crucial for your data collection for you to know what clicks and what does not click to your target audiences. It will help you reduce unnecessary expenses because you will get a hint of what really works in your niche rather than aiming for your targets using a shotgun method.
To run an A/B test, change one aspect of your campaign and run both iterations, then collect data on both so you can compare which of these performed better, i.e. led to more conversions.
This data will then justify your implementation of a change to get better results.
Paid Media helps by exposing your ads to more people (more impression) thus giving you the needed information about the click and conversions that were made.
5. Boost Social Media Mileage
It’s getting more challenging to be heard and found organically amidst all the buzz going on in social media. According to Statista, by 2021 nearly 92% of American businesses will use social media for marketing. With those odds stacked against you, it becomes nearly imperative that you use a targeted paid media campaign to float above all the ambient noise and get your content noticed by the right audiences. Here are some of the ways you can leverage paid social media.
Videos. When it comes to video advertising, Facebook is king. Facebook’s worldwide video advertising revenue is expected to reach $9.6 billion by 2021. It controls nearly 87% of social network video ad spend in the US and 47% of consumers admit that they watch video ads more often on Facebook than other platforms – including YouTube. Try to picture it in your mind: 500 million viewers watch 100 million hours of video content on Facebook daily.
Story Ads. In October of 2020, Statista projected that Instagram would have approximately 1.074 billion users by 2021, with about 500 million of those using IG stories. That’s a huge audience for you to promote your products to. To complement your feed, you can experiment with story ads to pique the interest of your audience. And with the ability to target your ads by reach, video views, traffic, conversions, app installs and brand awareness, you can drive business results at the same time.
Influencer Marketing. Also known as Influence Marketing, it is a form of marketing in which focus is placed on specific key individuals rather than the target market as a whole. In a span of five years, it has gone from relative obscurity to undeniable prominence where even large brands understand its value. By 2021, it is estimated that influencer marketing will be worth $13.8 billion and a staggering 99% of respondents to a survey conducted by the Influencer Marketing Hub believe that it is an effective form of marketing.
Many inbound marketers play the long-game when it comes to using integrated SEO and content marketing initiatives and regard it as the most fruitful long-term strategy.
However, this is not to say Paid Media and PPC don’t play a crucial part in magnifying the fruits of consistent organic marketing efforts.
With social media noise reaching near-deafening levels, the amount of institutional ad spend and consumer buy-in of boosted content on social media channels are proof that it’s well nigh impossible to rely on organic efforts alone to get noticed.
Paid media is a great way to get your target audience’s eyes and ears on your content and can undoubtedly help attract more leads and increase conversions.