5 Steps to a Great Online Advertising Campaign
As an advertiser, your goal should be to reach your target audience in the most cost-effective way. Like its traditional counterparts, online advertising is a tricky game. If executed properly, it will work to produce the best results and if not, it may become a huge money sink- a condition, which will affect startups the most!
Here’s a 5-step plan to build a successful online advertising campaign:
1. Define Your Goals: Define the goals that you will want your online advertising campaign to achieve. Set a clear vision of what you want to accomplish: long-term benefits or immediate results? Targeting a 20 percent sales growth or clearing inventory? Reaching a new market or retargeting existing customers? This way, you can deploy the most effective online advertising options and measure the return on investment.
2. Define Your Target Audience: Millions of people are viewing millions of web pages everyday and you will want to reach only those who are interested in your brand or product. Defining your target customer will mean defining specifications on gender, age, job profile, net household income, level of education, ability to spend on a one time, occasional, or constant basis, purpose of purchase, and time spent on the internet. Answering these queries will help you draw a clearer picture of your target audience while guiding your choice of content and placements.
3. Plan your Budget: Cost-effective pricing models make online advertising a great option for companies who have a limited budget. From the cheapest CPC and CPM campaigns, to Facebook and Twitter promotions, to blog marketing and email marketing, the online advertising industry offers solutions for every budget and for every level of awareness.
4. Create a Suitable Ad Content: Emphasi on one or two good value propositions to keep your online advertising focused. To determine what sells well, you may need to come up with different versions of similar ads. Change one variable at a time and check the effects/ response. The process becomes easier if you are advertising through Facebook. Facebook offers a split-test option which you can prudently use to create the most effective advertisement. You can get detailed know-how at http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/30893/How-to-Split-Test-Your-Facebook-Ads-to-Maximize-Conversions.aspx
It hardly matters what you are selling- a product or a service! You are actually selling benefits that affect the users’ emotions. Use words that relate to the consumer. Put the focus on “You” and “Yours”. While creating a text ad for each item, make sure to include at least 1-3 prime keywords. If your online advertising campaign includes banner promotions, then you have extra responsibilities. Check if you need to update it with a holiday specific message and make sure every image has an appropriate ALT tag, with the graphic properly optimized for size and resolution.
5. Choose Channels and Monitor Progress: Where you post your ads has a prime role to play in the success of your online advertising campaign. Your visibility is most likely to get stronger if your ads are displayed in several places. If you are thinking to place ads on other websites or social media networks, consider factors such as website traffic, search engine ranking, external linking, and quality of current ads and messages presented in those ads. If you are a beginner, then you may want to start off with PPC (pay per click) campaigns. It’s better to try out Google Adwords (view www.Google.com/onlinebuisness) that permit you to exercise control on your daily expenditure. It also comes with a tool that helps you identify the most effective keywords. Conversion rate serves as an important measuring tool. Monitor it closely and don’t hesitate to modify your ad if you really need to do so. Make changes till you get the best fit. Apart from website stats and PPC stats, there are services like Google’s DFP Small Business that offer powerful ad tracking management and support. And it is a free tool!
Online advertising campaigns can create success stories for any business with varying budget commitments. The key lies in diversification and visibility. Depending on your budget, you may opt for a mix strategy to target prospects via different routes- paid search, Facebook and Twitter ads and updates, blog marketing, email marketing, placing ads in specific websites, and so on. Follow your prospects wherever they go using retargeting services like those provided by ReTargeter (view www.ReTargeter.com) !
Whatever you do and wherever you place your ads, make sure to follow your prospects with something meaningful and entertaining. Online advertising is becoming more and more sophisticated with advertisers paying more respect to the viewers’ tastes. Online advertising has become design-centric, demanding high dose of creativity in the areas of layout, colors, content, graphics, and animation. Thinking beyond “What’s the average cpm for a targeted display ad?” and being guided by the “What you believe is what you see” philosophy, the online advertising industry has been making the best utilization of display ads… a delight for creative designers and a way to increase conversion rate for the advertisers. It all depends on how your ad looks, it all depends on what viewers see and perceive! It all depends on the design and appearance!
Growing sophistication has contributed to the emergence of design standards and parameters. Proven strategies that produced great results are discussed at in our upcoming e-book…stay tuned for more!