So you are the king (or queen) of digital! Every media plan that you present to your clients includes not one, not two but ALL of the social media platforms.
Congratulations! You are likely missing a large chunk of your target audience because you have created your kingdom on Facebook or Instagram or wherever Kim Kardashian thinks is cool this week.
Ever play the board game Risk?
There is a whole big world out there that you and your clients can also conquer. Don’t worry, you don’t have to sacrifice any other platform to do so. And you aren’t taking any risks—that was just an analogy.
Digital strategies need to work in harmony and complement one another, not work against each other and this is where expanding your horizons beyond those walled gardens is your best strategy.
So—consider programmatic and social audience reach.
There’s unique reach and a considerable population size in both environments. Broadly speaking, we can say that while not everyone uses social media almost everyone uses the Internet at large. Taking that into consideration, programmatic naturally has a more significant reach.
Being digitally present in many ways ensures that you’re capturing your audience on the relevant channels, specifically when they’re in a more receptive state of mind. It also means being present on the digital channels your audience is using—all of them.
There is life outside of Facebook, really there is!
Advertisers often find themselves running campaigns on social channels, and not considering how programmatic can supplement their strategy.
Programmatic and social advertising are essentially the same in what they allow advertisers to do, which is to automate the ad buying process based on parameters set by the advertiser.
The main difference? AND benefit? Incorporating programmatic solutions will change where your ads are bought and served.
Social advertising exists in a walled garden (we used that above) which is the respective social media site that you’re leveraging. Let’s use Instagram, for example. When you run a standard Instagram campaign, your ad will look like a regular post in the Instagram feed and is isolated to the Instagram world (for argument’s sake). That world might look really big but once you remove those blinders you’ll realize how small it actually is… even with Kim Kardashian on it!
Alternatively, programmatic ads can appear on a bunch of different websites, whether placed through a private deal or open auction buy. Understanding these differences enables you, the advertiser, to be better equipped when exploring additional digital advertising options.
Ultimately, you’ll make your client happy—and isn’t that just the dream?
Let’s dive into some of the benefits you’ll find when combining programmatic with social and being cognizant of creative messaging as we move down the funnel.
Match the message to the medium—props to McLuhan!
So what’s a common concern for advertisers? Frequency capping. How do you cap your ad messaging between the open exchange, publisher deals, walled gardens and so on?
Well the answer is… you kind of can’t. But in all honesty, you don’t have to—there’s a way to mitigate this.
If you’re promoting one or two versions of an ad and extending that same messaging in display, native, social and search placements, your target audience could be seeing that same ad every single time!
Do you really want to be that brand?
By pushing the same message without taking into account the stage of the funnel or the targeting, you risk consumer burnout and negative brand recall.
The solution? Adjust the messaging based on the channel.
While it’s important to carry over consistent messaging while using different words, you want to build a cohesive story that aligns with the specs and environment of each ad. The text in your Instagram story ad may not necessarily fit well in your leaderboard ad. And an Instagram story is not the same size as a LinkedIn ad. Making the necessary adjustments based on the platform you are using will make all the difference to curate cohesive brand messaging.
After all, nobody likes a crowded 320×50 mobile ad that you have to squint to read.
It’s all about the funnel. TOFU, MOFU, BOFU FTW!
Each platform and channel should play a role in your marketing and sales funnel in different ways. It’s like you are piecing together the chapters of a book to tell a beautiful brand story.
That’s the goal.
After identifying your business objective and the KPIs relevant to your tactics, you’re likely approaching your campaigns with a traditional funnel: the top is the awareness portion, the middle focuses on consideration and the bottom is the final action or conversion point.
Shout out to our marketing 101 professors from uni!
At the top of the funnel, programmatic helps to establish reach.
Leveraging standard demographic, intent and interest targeting, as well as 1st- and 3rd-party data, is a good foundation at this stage. Since programmatic advertising can reach users on many sites, it can be used to find new customers, encouraging site visits and fueling your pool of users to feed into the next stage.
Content in the upper funnel is focused on brand awareness and does not abruptly call users to complete an action, that would be like proposing to someone on the first date—let’s leave that type of stuff to reality TV, shall we?
Presenting content to those who are interested in your industry without asking them to actually do anything is an excellent start to the customer relationship.
In fact, clear brand messaging and simple statements can help advertisers start a conversation—a conversation you can continue as you move toward your lower-funnel initiatives. Because there is nothing worse than getting to the bottom without having anything left to say! So have those brand-focused display or video ads drive to content, such as your brand’s website, FAQ, blog posts are all ways to associate your brand with helpful themes.
Now that the user has been introduced to your brand, it’s time to take’em to school with educational content. We’ve made it to the middle of the funnel.
Here you have the opportunity to showcase more detailed content. Develop content that answers important questions or solves specific problems for your demographic. The goal is to engage users in this stage, and running programmatic campaigns with native or videos ads work well. Ads that call users to explore useful tools like webinars, eBooks, case studies and guides are a great segue from the content in the upper funnel—this stage is categorizing a more qualified audience who have come down the funnel.
You must be wondering, where does social come in?
We’ll be the bigger person here and talk about social media’s role in overall digital marketing campaigns, even though we are a self-serve programmatic advertising platform. That just goes to show you how invested in YOUR success we really are.
Tying in social at this stage is a great way to bring the strategies together. Social ads can provide additional information and can supplement the native and video ads they’ve already seen.
You begin with the broad reach of programmatic to build interest, and then apply a conversational approach that users are familiar with on their social channels.
Okay, we’re almost at the end—we’ve made it to the bottom of the funnel. Don’t worry, this is one of those rare times where being at the bottom pays off!
Now is the time you answer any questions or concerns from hand raisers in your demo or, to present yourself again to those who have explored your website’s contact forms or abandoned a cart at check-out.
Retargeting and dynamically retargeting those who showed interest in your brand is your last attempt to move the needle on the conversion. Ensuring your StackAdapt pixel, as well as your social media pixels are placed properly allows for excellent tracking and retargeting practices.
What happens by the end?
It’s time to finally reap the reward for all of your subtle nurturing and sweet customer attention, pat yourself on the back, you made it!
Carefully identifying which channel and messaging fits in what stage of the funnel, and which type of targeting to leverage is the key when developing an omnichannel approach to your campaigns.