Business owners everywhere are spending $1000’s on digital advertising with no return. Many of them are getting little to no conversions. These business owners aren’t happy about this fact but they know they have no choice but to advertise.
Any business owner you ask will say advertising is a risk for their business. At the same time, business owners understands they need to have an advertising strategy to compete. It is one of the most important aspects of attracting new customers and making more sales. In fact, a recent survey revealed something significant about small businesses advertising. 30% of small businesses spend between $750 and $2,499 per month on collecting data for marketing. It appears they have decided if they are going to invest, they are going to do it right.
Unfortunately, many of the businesses still don’t invest. They are not in collecting data and are implementing inefficient strategies. They eventually slam the breaks on advertising altogether resulting in confusion and stagnation.
Why Small Business Owners Don’t Invest in Digital Advertising
One of the biggest reasons why small businesses don’t invest in digital advertising is because they don’t have a dedicated marketing team. For this reason, businesses often start off trying to handle their advertising in house. They try to use Google Ads or Facebook Ads with no training. Additionally, they don’t know what keyword research is. For that reason, their content doesn’t rank on search engines. Some of them haven’t yet identified a concrete goal for their advertising campaigns. The only targeted customers they have are based on location. Consequently, these errors result in a bad return on investment. Business owners then start to believe that digital advertising is too expensive and doesn’t work
Digital Advertising Works if Done Correctly
Unfortunately, some business do adopt the idea that digital advertising doesn’t work. What they really mean is it didn’t work for them. The reason it didn’t work is because there was no strategy involved. In other words, their advertising had no data to back it up. Digital advertising when done correctly has proven to provide a strong return on investment. As a result, there has been a transition from traditional marketing to digital marketing every year.
Return on Investment is the Priority
A survey asked business owners what the number one priority was with respect to digital advertising. Most business owners overwhelmingly agreed that the answer was ROI. This explains the amount of money invested in data collection and advertising efficiency. On the other hand, businesses that don’t invest in data are beginning to realize they are in trouble. The days of throwing an advertisement against the wall and hoping it sticks are over. A continuing transition from traditional marketing to digital marketing has helped many businesses. They have been able to re-invest in advertising data because they are spending less as their ROI increases.
Data Driven Strategies
The truth is, a businessess must adapt. Using the same strategy from 30 years ago isn’t going to work. Any marketing strategy based on past history is depending on a great deal of luck. In reality, the chances that a business is perfectly in tune with the needs of its customers is slim. With the technology available through digital advertising, it is possible to know exactly what the customer is looking for. New businesses are building their advertising strategy around the data with each passing day. In addition, they are decreasing the value of businesses that don’t.
Understanding The Process
Not all businesses who fail to invest in digital advertising think it doesn’t work. Some businesses just don’t know enough about it to feel comfortable spending money on it. Digital advertising done right can be very complex. Understanding how the system works can reduce uncertainty and help a business feel more comfortable. Understandably so, It’s easier to invest in a digital advertising agency if you understand the process. Knowing why your current strategy isn’t working and how to fix it is a good start for getting back on the path of gaining new customers.
What You Are Paying For With Digital Advertising
The first step in running a digital advertising campaign is deciding what the purpose of your advertisement is. Who is your advertisement designed for? Where do you want it to be displayed? What do you want those who see your advertisement to do? Where do you want people who click on your advertisement to go? These are all questions that have to be answered before you even start your campaign. Also, choosing your ad type based on the answers to these questions will boost your return on investment.
Some of the top ad types you can use for your advertising campaigns are as follows.
Two of the most popular forms of paid digital advertising are search and display
Search ads are one of the most popular Google Ad campaign types for generating leads. Additionally, they can drive sales and get the right consumers to your website. Search ads include your website URL, two headlines, a display path, and a description.
Display ads are also one of the most popular Google Ad campaign types. They are used to drive sales, generate leads and get people to your website. They are great for creating brand awareness and encourage people to consider your product or service. Similarly, display ads can be used to target users based on their interests, habits, or what they are currently searching for. You can also choose what platform to display your ad on or what keywords should trigger your advertisement. Keywords should be based on topics that are relevant to your product or service
Social Media Advertising
52% of brand discovery occurs on social media. Social media advertisement impressions increase by about 20% every year. For that reason, there is more competition for advertisers and more relevant advertisements for consumers. The average person has 7 social media accounts and spends over 2 hours per day consuming content. Here are some of the best social media platforms for advertising based on ROI.
Three of the top platforms for digital advertising with social media
Facebook is a monster in the digital advertising world and soaks up 40% of all pending on display advertisements. Above all, the goal of a social media advertisement is to refer the consumer to your website. That is where they eventually become a paying customer or sign up your mailing list. This is where Facebook is most dominant platforms. It is responsible for over 80% of all social referrals to e-commerce sites. Some businesses are seeing up to 50 times ROI on their Facebook ads. Facebook is an extremely strong platform for digital advertising.
Instagram is another strong social media platform with a monthly advertising reach of almost 850 million people. Marketers who use Instagram as a part of their advertising strategy invest around 30% of their budget into Instagram stories. People who use Instagram stories regularly can attest to the fact that stories get a lot of views.
YouTube is the third most popular paid social media advertising platform. The platform earned almost $5 billion in revenue from advertising in the US alone in 2019. Moreover, they are projected to easily pass the $5 billion mark in 2020. YouTube is by far the most popular video advertising platform based on hours watched. Over 500 million hours of YouTube videos are watched every day. It is no wonder digital marketers are investing in the platform.
Digital Advertising Through Remarketing
Retargeting your potential customers is a great way to lower your cost per customer, increase conversions and boost profits. It can take anywhere between 6-8 touchpoints to generate a quality lead. Using remarketing advertisements can lower the amount of touchpoints needed to make a sale. Data driven targeting allows you to track the behavior of potential customers and follow up later. Surveys have shown that customers don’t seem to mind being tracked as long as it results in a better more personalized deal.
Once you have decided what type of advertisement you want to run, you need to figure out what you want the objective of your advertisement to be. Do you want your advertisement to reach as many people as possible?
Some of the digital advertising objectives you can optimize for are as follows
Specific Ranking on Search Results
If your objective is for your Google Ad to appear in a certain position in search results, you can choose “Target Impression Share” as your bidding strategy. You can choose to only be shown at the very top, anywhere on the top, or anywhere on the page. Google will also allow you to set the percentage of times you want your advertisement to appear in that position. If you only want your advertisement to appear as the absolute top result half the time, you would select “Absolute Top of Results Page.” You would just make your Percent Impression Share to Target 50%.
If you know 90% of all the clicks go to the top advertisement listing for the keywords you are using, you could use “Target Impression Share” to ensure that you weren’t wasting your money on being at the bottom of the page.
If you choose “maximize clicks” as your bidding objective for Google Ads, it will try to get you the most clicks possible while staying within your ad budget. This is one of the most common objectives used because it is the most user friendly. The strategy uses Google’s automated bidding system to optimize results. This objective can be used if you don’t have a lot of data or you just recently set up Google Analytics. You can use “maximize clicks” to drive more traffic to your website, track users and optimize your bidding strategy.
Clicks to Website
Facebook’s “Clicks to Website” Objective is a great way to accomplish the number one goal of your social media advertising strategy. Take your customers to your website where they can buy your product or service. You will have the opportunity to write a headline of up to 25 characters, 90 characters of text and a news feed link description that allows for 200 words of copy. Utilize all the available space possible to make your ad as relevant as possible.
Why Your Digital Advertising Campaigns Aren't Converting
If your advertisements aren’t converting, chances are you are using the wrong ad type for your business. It could also be that your ad objective is wrong or you aren’t using the right keywords. If you haven’t structured your content properly, that could be another problem. Without having enough content to intrigue viewers, you are sending people who click on your ad to the wrong place. You would actually be wasting money on useless clicks.
Here is an explanation of why each of these problems result in no conversions.
Wrong Ad Type
If the type of ad you are running is not relevant to the type of business you operate you won’t have much success. A service based business with no products is not going to have much success running a “Shopping” advertisement. Shopping ads are better suited for an e-commerce or retail stores. Search and display ads are the most popular and most used. Testing to see which ad type generates the best results and then building your advertising campaign strategy based on that is what yields the greatest ROI.
Wrong Bidding Objective
Each bidding objective must have a purpose. The less control you have over your campaign the lower your potential is for ROI. Although Google has smart automated bidding strategies, having full control of your campaign will allow you to optimize your advertisements to the fullest extent. This is where you can set yourself apart from other businesses. A large portion of businesses that do their digital advertising in house are letting Google automate their campaign. As a result, they are spending more per click. Having a more hands on approach to your bidding strategy will result in less wasteful spending. This will yield a much better ROI which and enable you to get more value.
No Keyword Research
If you are not researching the exact search keywords and phrases used by your potential customers you are putting your business at a huge disadvantage. For instance, many business owners fall into the trap of relying on their expertise for their keywords that as an expert in their industry they know what people are looking for. Consequently, they fail to identify the exact search phrases of their customers. The emergence of voice search only adds to the need for research. Not taking the time to do keyword research will lead to much lower search relevance.
No Campaign or Poor Campaign Structure
One of the biggest mistakes made by businesses when running advertisements is not building a campaign structure. There is nothing to test the performance of your advertisement against if you are not running multiple ads within an ad set. Failure to use A/B testing for products and services will not provide any data, therefore, there will be no way to know if your advertisement has been successful.,
Poor Copy or Not Enough Copy
When using Google Ads, there is a limit to the amount of content that can be included. On the other hand, social media allows an unlimited amount of copy. Interestingly enough, you will oftentimes see more relevant information in a Google Ad than you will on a Facebook or Instagram post.
What some people don’t realize is that social media platforms have their own search engines. Keyword research and word count is just as important on social media as it is on Google. In fact, the amount of tracking on social media is so enormous that when a person stops scrolling to read longer text or clicks “read more” it is considered a positive engagement. When this happens, the relevance of the advertisement increases. This results in more people seeing the ad and a lower cost per click. If your copy is written poorly or there isn’t much there people won’t look at your ad as long and they definitely won’t “read more.”
Irrelevant Landing Page
When someone clicks on your advertisement, they expect to see relevant content. Many businesses make the mistake of sending the user to their website’s homepage confusing the viewer. Now the viewer is required relocate the content they were looking for. The user may just leave your website out of frustration because they can’t find what they were looking for. Your bounce rate will increase and your relevance will go down.
How to Fix Your Advertisement and Start Converting
Optimize Ad Type and Objective to what generates the most leads for your business
Make sure you are running the correct ad type for lead generation. You may have to try a few different types and look at the results to see what is best for your business.
Research Keywords to Find Out Exactly What Consumers Are Typing In
Don’t make the mistake of guessing what your potential customers are typing in. There are plenty of paid and free tools you can use to find key phrases. You can search for volume, level of competition and the average cost-per-click. Keyword research is not a luxury, it is necessary. If you are hoping to have any relevance on any platform that uses a search engine, you need it.
Structure Your Ad Campaign Properly
In order to run an ad campaign at full efficiency you need to be able to test advertisements against each other to see which ones perform the best. When you perform your A/B test you only want there to be one difference between the ads so you will know what is causing one to perform better than the other. You will also want to run multiple ad sets with different products or services. If one of your services is performing well with a high amount of volume, the best option may be to put all your eggs in that basket so you can maximize ROI.
Write Good Copy or Hire Someone
As an expert in your industry it shouldn’t be hard for you to come up with enough content for your advertisement. Use spell check, have a friend check over your ad, or sleep on it and read it again tomorrow. Make sure grammatical error or misspellings don’t cause your otherwise good advertisement to lose clicks and conversions. If you don’t think you can come up with content you can always hire a content writer. You will still want to make sure the advertisement is in your voice and whoever you hire should have a process in place to facilitate that.
Create a Landing Page Specifically For Your Ad
Create a landing page for your advertisement and optimize it so when someone clicks on your page they are looking at content relevant to what they clicked on. Usually this landing page will not be accessible from your website and will be designed to help the user continue down the path of your ad objective. If your conversion goal is to have the user sign up for a mailing list, make sure there is a place to do that on the landing page. When selling a product or service, the landing page should make it very easy for the user to make a purchase.
There is much more to running a successful advertisement than boosting a post on Facebook or paying to maximize conversions through Google Ads. If you aren’t having any success with your advertisements, you are likely making at least one of the errors previously described. Digital advertising has proven time and time again that with the right strategy and proper execution, the return on investment is extremely positive. Take the time to learn how to implement a strategy or if necessary hire a professional to set up your ad campaigns for you. Whatever you do, stop spending $1,000s on ads that aren’t optimized for conversions and at the very least don’t waste your money and then tell other business owners that advertising doesn’t work.