Why Now is the Perfect Time to Mix Up Your Social Ads Strategy

LinkedIn dominates B2B social media advertising. It has more than 800 million users looking specifically for business networking, opportunities and education, and an ad on LinkedIn can reach almost 15% of the world’s population.  

But is LinkedIn the best choice for all or most of your advertising dollars? Maybe not. 

In a world with no shortage of social media channels and an endless appetite for user-generated content, digital advertising options are expanding. Instagram, TikTok, Facebook and Pinterest have been considered more B2C platforms than B2B, but that’s changing. They are becoming better at pushing relevant ads to targeted users, and they offer fresh formats for visual and interactive engagement. 

Top-of-the funnel AWS digital ad on Facebook including Amazon Translate.

Should you mix up your social media advertising strategy and add new channels? Here are some considerations to start your thought process.

Testing for better CPL and lead quality is not a big lift. How has the quality of your leads been in relation to your cost-per-lead (CPL)? CPLs for social channels can range from about $90 to $250, with LinkedIn being on the higher end. Testing out lower-priced options and comparing lead quality is a worthy test if your CPL rates are rising and you haven’t been happy with your leads. 

There are enough options for low-impact testing, and the process generates meaningful data pretty quickly, especially because some of these channels offer direct lines into specific demographics. For example, about 78% of Pinterest users are women, and IBM has taken advantage of this to target ads at women.

Pinterest ad from IBM raising awareness about advanced technologies.

People are looking for social engagement that fits them. The pandemic changed the social media landscape in a lot of ways. More people started using social media and people spent more time on it. TikTok in particular exploded and continues to, but at different rates for different demographics. For example, now TikTok is growing its user base at a 32% rate in the Middle East and Africa, 17%+ in Asia-Pacific and Latin America, and 9.3% in North America. Geographic uptake is definitely worth considering when moving your ad dollars around.

Generational behavior matters, too, because the makeup of the workforce is constantly changing. Who are you trying to reach right now, and where are they most likely to be? Instagram is Gen Z’s favorite social channel, and Gen X is its fastest growing market; but Baby Boomers still prefer YouTube and Facebook. 

Also consider people’s job roles and responsibilities, as well as their buying journeys. Is an executive at a traditional financial services company looking at TikTok for inspiration with their morning coffee? Probably not, but an executive in the entertainment industry probably is.

Users on traditional B2C channels don’t want to be sold to. Even though we’re seeing more personal and emotion-laden posts on LinkedIn post-pandemic, it’s still a business-focused channel where people go for business-related benefits. Its structure, design and capabilities are all about business.

By contrast, channels such as Facebook, TikTok and Instagram are more focused on individuals and personal engagement. On these channels ads and ad content should be more casual, visual and even entertaining. That doesn’t mean you can’t align ads with a buyer’s journey, but the tone and design should be more peer-to-peer than seller-to-buyer. Authenticity is important, and over-produced videos and heavy-handed hard sells could actually harm your brand.

A Tik Tok ad about from The Marketing Millennials.

You’ll need to have resources for new types of content. Ads and content need to be aligned with what each channel offers in terms of user experience. Instagram, TikTok and Facebook are much more visual channels than LinkedIn, and people are consuming content faster via constant swiping and really short videos. It’s important to assess if you have the resources to produce the type of ads and content needed on your chosen channels.

In fact, according to a HubSpot survey, 30% of social media marketers plan to invest more in short-form video than any other social media marketing strategy in 2002, while 33% plan to leverage short-form video for the first time.

Twilio ad on an Instagram story.

The same rules apply for other types of content. All of these considerations apply to content as well, but especially having the creative and technical capabilities to produce content beyond traditional text-heavy eBooks and blogs. And for both–ads and content–you’ll need to feed the channel with a regular cadence of fresh content.

A Zoominfo sponsored ad on Instagram.

Have you had enough of the same old when it comes to your social media strategy? If so, take a step back and consider where your time, effort and budget could be better spent on higher-quality results. 

And don’t forget, we can help with any aspect of your social media strategy, including planning, designing and executing.

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