During the rise of the social media craze many companies and brands were able to leverage the power and reach of popular platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn to develop new leads and skyrocket sales. The buzz of the successful social media campaigns swept the business world like a wild fire, and a totally new marketing segment was created complete with professional social media marketers and agencies. In the hay day of the social media explosion, all you needed was time and good content that people would like or share to create brand awareness and acquire new leads and clients.
Today things have changed but not necessarily in a negative way. In the beginning stages of many social media platforms the option to have paid advertising was nonexistent, or at least it was very limited, but today it’s the total opposite. All of the popular social media platforms have some type of paid advertising available. The platforms advertising options range from basic to advanced. For instance Facebook can target their ads to a person by their income level, whether they are married, their geographic location, their interests, and many other targeting options that other advertising platforms (like Google AdWords) might not have. That’s great if you are in the market for paid advertising but there is a downside to those who are still banking on “free” social media campaigning. Some social media platforms, like Facebook, have begun to intentionally restrict the reach of a post on a company page if it has certain keywords in it. Long story short they want you to start paying to reach your fans, and the free ride that swept the online marketing world a decade ago is over. Good content won’t be enough anymore. I’m not saying you should lose all hope but the odds are that this stagey will start to be brought to all large social media platforms in exceeding force.
Don’t get too discouraged if you’re a social media nut. You will still be able to reach your fans with posts for free, and you certainly should continue to post on your accounts, but you’re not going to get the level of engagement that people have been enjoying for the last decade unless you’re willing to pay for it. Most of the social media platforms have basic options that a moderately tech savvy person could setup for their business or organization on their own. You may find the basic options limiting, it will take time to learn and it does cost money but both the learning curve and cost are obtainable for most small businesses without the help from a professional marketing firm. For some of the more advanced advertising options, you may opt to have an online marketing agency, like Jonroc, handle your account for you. Often times a professional online marketer will be able to cover their cost by creating an extremely well defined and efficient campaign. Another plus a professional online advertising agency brings is the ability to set up detailed analytical tracking to evaluate spending, conversions, and sales. You will be able to alleviate the risk of spending marketing money in a new medium by reviewing your acquisition and conversion costs. Whether you do it in house or with an online marketing agency the good news is that the prices of boosting a post or starting an online marketing campaign is well within the reach of most small business both financially and technically. With a little bit of time and money you’ll be able to keep up with the changing social media advertising trends so that you can continue to reach your clients, create leads and make sales.
“An Update to News Feed: What It Means for Businesses.” Facebook for Business. November 14, 2014. Accessed September 8, 2015.