Back when everything was in black and white, and men wore top hats and chivalry was still alive, advertising had three platforms: the newspaper, magazine ads and signage.  As the world started to get some color, the television was invented, as well as billboards, bus ads  and so forth; as a result, the advertising market expanded.

We now live in world where people go to their office and work on their digital billboards. Then they take a break and text or maybe play games on their digital billboards. Then they go home and watch their favorite program on yet a different digital billboard.

A recent report suggests that if the next generation maintains today’s trends, kids born today will end up spending 25% of their life in front of a screen. Woah.

If you are a business owner and this information is inconsequential to the way you run your business, then I would like to invite you to join us here in the 21 century.

With computers, phones and televisions being as interactive as they are today, there is more and more advertising potential.

So yes, people spend a lot of time in front of a screen, got it; but where is your social advertising dollar going to get the most bang for its buck? What form of social media advertising carries the highest value? I would like to examine (probably) the four most popular methods of social advertising.

How Much Does a Promoted Tweet Cost?

Promoted tweets are a great way to reach a particular audience. Twitter allows you to target your audience by keywords, interests, geographical location, device and through other means.

The charge associated with promoted tweets is cost-per-engagement (CPE).  This means you are only charged when a user clicks on your tweet or follows you because of it. Depending on what action is taken (favorite, a click on a link, a retweet) you can be charged anywhere from 50 cents to $1.50 per engagement.

How Much Does a Facebook Ad Cost?

Everyone from your 6 year old cousin to your 85 year old grandma is on Facebook now so narrowing down your audience will be crucial for creating an effective Facebook ad.

Like Twitter, Facebook ads allow you to target certain audiences based on similar variables. Facebook ads are bid on as if you were purchasing them on Ebay. After the auction is over, the ad is then awarded to highest bidder.

There are two ways of paying for Facebook ads- CPM and CPC. CPM stands for cost per impressions (I know ‘impressions’ does not start with an M. I don’t understand it either).  This means for every 1000 impressions (meaning the ad just has to show up on someone’s Facebook page, they do not have to engage the ad) you are charged.effective-facebook-ads

CPC means costs per click which is pretty self-explanatory. The effectiveness of these ads are measured in many different ways. I have chosen to highlight one route for evaluation in particular and that is by industry. I chose to highlight this information because you can tell just by a quick glance if you should even get involved with Facebook ads or if your advertising budget should be utilized elsewhere (See Graph, FYI- CTR stands for Clickthrough Rate).

What About a Promoted  Facebook Post?

This is a strategy that can fit everyone’s budget. However, like anything in this world, the more you put in, the more you get out. The cost of a promoted Facebook post usually ranges from $5 to $100 a week. Facebook estimates that a $5 weekly budget will reach approximately 1,300- 2,400 people, whereas a $100 budget will reach approximately 21,000 to 39,000.

Ryan Hanley, the director of marketing for an insurance service group in New York discovered that on his first week, his $5 spent on a promoted post got him 1170 impressions and 87 clicks to his page.facebook-promoted-posts-1

How Much Is an In-Stream YouTube Ad?

According to myself, this method carries the greatest value when compared to the aforementioned tactics. If you have a small budget and can’t afford a diverse social media advertising campaign, In-Stream ads are most likely going to be your most effective route.

We’ve all been on YouTube anxious to show our friends a video and right when you think it’s going to start… an ad comes up. These ads are called In-Stream ads and can be skipped after five seconds. The reason I think these ads are going to give you the biggest bang for your buck is because you are not charged if the viewer skips the video after the required first five seconds. It is only after the viewer watches 30 seconds (regardless of how long the ad is) that you are charged.

With these ads, you are only paying for exposure you know is happening. Many costly advertising campaigns are high risk high reward, but with YouTube In-Stream ads, there are no surprises.  This is unlike any other audio visual advertising medium that has ever previously existed.

Another reason these ads are more effective is because YouTube (Google) preformed a study and found that participants that viewed YouTube ads had (on average) a 1.5 times higher recall rate than ads that were exclusively viewed on television.youtube

Like Facebook and Twitter, YouTube also allows you to carefully craft your audience based on a number of different variables. The cost of an In-Stream ad has many variables but usually averages out to be between .04 cents to .12 cents per view.

In Conclusion

Social advertising is the future of advertising. More importantly, it’s the now of advertising, and if your product or service is not on the screen that the next generation is going to spend a quarter of their life looking at, it’s time to reevaluate your advertising strategy.

Jamie Bates