In recent years the use of social media as an advertising channel has boomed mainly due to advertising being relatively inexpensive and customer reach being potentially huge.
However, a recent study by Jon Morris at the University of Florida, found that social media users deemed a large majority of Facebook advertising in their feeds was uninviting. Unlike the more traditional channels such as television, newspapers and radio, where generic ads are expected, entering a social media feed in the same way is considered an intrusion of personal space. It is the user’s world, and they are not going to let just anyone in. As a result, ads are no longer getting the results advertisers expect.
But there is some hope.
Morris found that Facebook users have significantly more positive emotional responses to ads when the ad has been reposted or ‘liked’ by one of their friends than an ad directly from the advertiser.
So how does an advertiser get that critical first ‘like’ or ‘share’?
Effective marketing is key. Facebook is increasingly treated as a personal space for many users and this needs to be kept in mind by advertisers. Generic ads that appear in a feed purely because the user ‘fits a specific demographic’ no longer work. Ads need to appeal to the user, be something they would want to share with friends, and something they would want to engage with and ultimately buy.
Focusing on the intended outcome of the ad is also key. With Facebook, this should be re-posting. When your ad is re-posted by friends, engagement and favourability increases. Another is to ensure your content is entertaining and interactive. This is content marketing which is nothing new, but its importance is increasing.
1. Aim to engage and excite your audience.
In such a targeted, personal space, make sure the ad appears to be something users want to share with their friends. Remember, social media sharing is a new version on word of mouth marketing
2. Be creative
Think differently. The most effective campaigns are using a simple format in a new way.
3. Know what your customer likes
The beauty of social media is it’s ability to track results. There are a number of sites that analyse ads and campaigns and ranks which ones are being shared and liked. Have a look and see what they are doing, and then join them.
This blog post is an analysis on an article from the conversation.com