Advertising on social media is entering a new phase. While for some this might be hard to believe, given that this medium does not feel that it has been around all that long.
However, the one thing that currently differentiates social media advertising from all other forms is the rapid development and change it is continuously experiencing.
New ad formats and options seem to be rolling out weekly, like the ability to include Cinemagraphs in Facebook advertising. They stand out, don't they?
Notice how only one part of the image moves?
Snapchat 3V - Vertical based video advertising. Which is not only a new way of reaching your customers but also a new video format. Being vertical brands or individuals need to create a video in this format. Tailoring the advertising to the platform.
Twitter objective-based campaigns. Where you only pay for the advertising actions that align with your social media marketing objectives.
Facebook auto-play video ads
These video ads are native in the Facebook stream and set to autoplay. However, a fundamental difference between these ad formats and YouTube ad formats is they are also set to silent play.
Meaning that a user can enjoy the ad if done correctly at work, unlike a YouTube ad that plays with volume. But the content needs to be created differently on that basis. Watch the below video without sound to get an idea.
Facebook lead ads- So you can subscribe or purchase in the stream never having to leave the Facebook platform.
Although it is not only the ad format that is changing continuously it is also the precise targeting capabilities. Any marketer will tell you their ideal situation is to be able to create the right ad, and place this in front of the right individual at the right time. Only then can we hope for the right action to take place.
Being able to do this is what makes social media advertising so powerful.
Exploring just some of the social media marketing targeting capabilities available at the moment might also surprise you.
While all social media marketing platforms are not equal in terms of targeting it is probably best to look at the industry leader as the benchmark, but also as an insight to what most of the platforms will soon be able to do.
Targeting options of Facebook
Currently include age, location, salary, age and gender, gender, placement, placement and device, or product id (re-marketing the exact product someone look at on your website).
By day, week, 2 weeks, month, and the ability to run ads within defined windows of time during the day. Like 9 to 5 p.m, or Midnight to 6 a.m.
Website Custom Audiences.
Which provides you with the ability to target all the visitors to your website on the Facebook platform up to 180 days or as little as the last 30 days. An important point to note, however, is this is not re-marketing. It is targeting your website traffic with any content and advertising you choose.
Email Custom Audiences.
This allows you with the ability to upload your email list and create a custom audience for targeting.
Targeting Facebook interest pages, perhaps a competitors page or industry page.
Creating targeting lists that look like the above audiences. Facebook essentially maps the characteristics of your current audience and looks for the audience, that closely matches those characteristics on their platform.
As each of the social media marketing platforms develops, so are the capabilities of the advertising options on these platforms. At the outset of this article, I stated that social media marketing is entering a new phase. I would define the phase as deep personalization of not only the targeting but the content delivery.
Whilst more traditional forms of advertising are asking how do we compete with social media marketing? The social media platforms are more focused on building deep advertising capability on the platforms people are already using.
This is driving continuous change and enhancements to the platforms, and just when they seem to be able to not get any better from an advertising capability they do.