Kenshoo Social (http://www.KenshooSocial.com), a global social marketing platform, today published a commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting, “The Key to Successful Social Advertising,” that evaluates how marketers are using social advertising, with the goal of educating marketers on how to develop social media strategy and activate the most effective tactics. Findings will also be presented by Kenshoo Social and guest from Forrester in a May 29 webinar.
Based on a survey of large social advertisers (i.e., social media and advertising professionals whose companies spend more than $100,000 per year on social media ads), Forrester found that, while social advertisers use a wide range of organic and paid strategies across a variety of social sites, more than one in three are not satisfied with their efforts. The findings emphasised the increasing needs for more sophisticated social advertising tactics and methods to better match tactics to objectives.
“Generally, social advertisers get what they pay for,” according to the study. “They are more satisfied with the results they achieve from paid advertising than the results they achieve with less costly organic tactics like branded pages, groups or accounts alone.”
Notable findings from the study include:
Organic posting is the most popular social media tactic, but paid advertising is the most successful. Social advertisers use a wide range of social sites and strategies. The most popular tactic is maintaining branded pages on general social networks, business networks and microblogs. Branded pages alone, however, do not make an effective social marketing strategy.
Social advertisers still are not using advanced optimisation tactics. More than half of large social advertisers use ad rotation, but only one-third use granular targeting to reach the right audiences. Most of those who do target primarily use basic criteria like demographic targeting.
Social marketers should pay for promoted content to drive awareness and buy ads to drive sales. The survey measured the tactics of satisfied social advertisers and found that different paid social strategies drove different kinds of success. Social advertisers who paid to promote their branded content were most satisfied with the awareness they created; while those who bought standard social ad units were happiest with their ability to drive purchases. Brand-focused social advertisers and response-focused social advertisers must deploy the tactics proven best for meeting their specific objectives.
“With billions of people around the world actively connecting on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest, marketers have eagerly turned to social media to engage their target audiences,” said Aaron Goldman, chief marketing officer of Kenshoo. “Today, most marketers include some type of social advertising in their programmes, but the options available to them have increased exponentially, as has the ability to measure the effectiveness of their outreach.
“This research study demonstrates the importance of using advanced technology platforms to create highly-targeted campaigns at scale, leveraging a portfolio approach across promoted content and standard ad units to achieve overall business goals,” Goldman continued. “Furthermore, marketers must connect the dots across paid, owned and earned media placements to understand the impact of each touchpoint along the path to conversion. Kenshoo Social is committed to delivering the tools needed by today’s social marketer to illuminate the value of social media and drive results.”
The Forrester study concludes with four initial steps marketers can use to immediately improve results:
- Start with clear marketing objectives.
- Promote your brand and your content.
- Take advantage of robust targeting.
- Develop a holistic approach for greater success.