When is the right time to invest in paid ads and how to make sure you get results?
Digital and social media ads can be tempting, because they are typically very affordable, easy to set up and extremely customisable. Google, Facebook and others make it feel like a dream audience is just on your fingertips – waiting for a chance to purchase your product.
Before investing in ads…
In the best case, ads are a powerful way to boost your business, grow your audience or get yourself in front of new people.
Too often, however, they end up swallowing big budgets in small increments without giving much of a return on investment.
Before investing in ads, it’s important to build your organic following first, to get to know your audience and what they like and need. Typically in a beginning there is some trial and error included, when you are figuring out your followers’ struggles and dreams. Investing in advertising at this point makes the whole trial and error process more expensive.
On the other hand, once you have a clear direction and even a clearer message, boosting that with a few strategic ads can really help you to jump to the next level.
When planning ad campaigns…
The groundwork is done and you are ready to go? Great!
The next step is goal setting. The variety of different advertising options is huge, and knowing the desired outcome narrows them down and improves your chances of success.
For example, improving engagement on Facebook and Instagram can require boosting individual posts. Advertising freebies or events can skyrocket conversion rate, and promoting a page or a website improves general visibility.
When launching an ad campaign…
Now your campaign is ready for launch!
Start with a modest budget and keep a close eye on results. Social media ads can usually be modified even after launch, so if they are not performing well in the first hours and days, make changes quickly. Even a small budget isn’t worth spending on nothing.
Here the goals and metrics come in handy: thanks to your plan, you know exactly what kind of results to expect. If your goal is conversion, tons of likes and comments aren’t what you are looking for.
Adjust the ad content, target audience and budget as you move forward. Over time, you’ll learn to see what works, and that is the time to increase budget, too.
After a campaign…
Congratulations on your first successful ad campaign!
After the campaign, it’s time to take stock: track results, celebrate successes and learn from mistakes.
And to move over to the next one!
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Photo by Will Francis on Unsplash