Sophie Watson, Paid Social Manager
Sophie Watson, Paid Social Manager
Calum Tynan
Calum Tynan, Paid Social Manager

This is the last in our series of posts by our Paid Social Managers, Sophie Watson and Calum Tynan, who explore the transition between PPC and social advertising. Find out why customers are switching to paid social, and why you should consider applying this to your own social strategy. Download the ebook for the full 2020 social media marketing strategy.

We’re seeing a gradual shift in advertising spend away from traditional PPC towards social advertising. We expect this to continue in 2020.

A recent report from IPA Bellwether showed that while general internet marketing spend has increased, SEO and platforms such as Google ads have reached their lowest reported spend since 2018. Social media advertising spend continues to increase year on year and is predicted to grow by 20% in 2020.

Why are customers switching to paid social?

Brands are trying to reach customers earlier in their purchase journey

With Google, you’re only reaching people who are already looking for a related product or service. They’re already in the consideration stage of the marketing funnel.

With social ads, you can target consumers at a much earlier point of the customer journey, during the awareness stage. Most importantly, you’re reaching those who may not even know they want your product or service yet.

With consumers taking ever more fragmented purchasing journeys, paid social also enables brands to hit multiple touchpoints before finalising a conversion.

Social adverts are more visually engaging

Another possible reason to use paid social over search is the sheer visual impact of social creative and the range of formats on offer.

On social media, the emphasis is on the creative and visual elements of the advert. There are regular updates on each platform with new formats and layouts, meaning you can target specific audiences with the exact format that you know will engage them.

Google Ads vs Paid Social Ads

Social adverts gather more data

Unlike Google ads, paid social ads allow a consumer to engage with the ad without having to click or convert. Users can express their interest (or lack of it) through a wide range of actions, such as commenting or liking. This additional data capture is enhanced by the variety of formats on offer, which now includes carousels, stickers and messenger ads. This data can then be used to re-target that individual with further ads across a range of platforms.

Instagram Ad examples

Social advertising is usually cheaper

According to online data, the average click per cost of a Google ad is between $1.00 and $2.00, while on Facebook it is $1.72. These numbers look comparable, but in reality, most brands will be able to generate clicks (to their website) from Facebook for much less than a Google Ad.

For example, at OST we deliver 100,000+ web visits per year to a technical B2B company at an average cost of around $0.16 per click and sales conversions at, on average, $14 per sale. The client gets a significantly better ROI from social ads than Google and continues to invest in Facebook.

Thank you for reading! If you want to find out more, download our full ebook here – or get in contact with us at hello@ostmarketing.com

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