Digital marketing is getting more competitive. Source: Shutterstock

Digital marketing is getting more competitive. Source: Shutterstock

Why businesses need to amplify ad spend with creativity

ADVERTISING on social media is quite easy and exciting, but it’s also extremely competitive.

According to the latest forecasts from MAGNA, digital advertising in APAC will grow by 16 percent, reaching US$81 billion this year.

In fact, even the Cambridge Analytica scandal couldn’t hurt the momentum created by Facebook in this region, helping them grow their average daily users grow by 17.9 percent to 561 million as of Q3 2018.

Given the demand, obviously, the average cost of campaigns is increasing.

According to an Internet Trends report published by Kleiner Perkins, Facebook click-through rate (CTR) costs have increased by 61 percent, and cost per thousand impressions (CPM) has jumped 112 percent.

Obviously, companies need to do more in order to get the most bang for their buck. In fact, it’s an important trend that the Hootsuite Social Media Trends 2019 report has picked up.

“While you may be able to pay your way into someone’s news feed, that’s no guarantee that anyone is going to pay attention,” said the report.

The solution? Hootsuite suggests that paid social teams recognize the importance of pairing ad money with an equivalent investment of time, creativity, and targeting savvy.

The report points out digital ads by Spotify and Netflix as the benchmark in creating “creative social ads that are at once personalized and entertaining, rather than just bland banner ads squeezed into a news feed”.

Marketers should aim to engage users in a discussion or spark an interest or some curiosity in them, rather than simply broadcast an ad at the audience.

Here are some recommendations from the report to help readers ensure ad spend is amplified with creativity to make the most of the budget, despite the increasing competition:

# 1 | Invest in high-quality content

Ordinary text-based stories aren’t enough to get the attention of readers and audiences. In today’s world, videos and graphics grab eyeballs better than plain text or simple stock images.

As a result, brands must invest in high-quality content that is not only engaging but also visually effective.

# 2 | Repurpose concepts from top-performing organic content

While creating high-quality content is a top priority, maximizing the value from that content is of great importance.

Hence, it’s recommended that brands repurpose concepts from top-performing organic content to create more content that highlights learnings/key points from that content or maybe even creates new content based on that content.

# 3 | Use what you’ve learned from previous campaigns to improve performance

Given the limited time you have with your audience, it’s important to learn from the past and improve performance.

Organizations today have access to a wide variety of tools that collect data about how audiences were engaged in different ways using a particular campaign.

Dissecting the data to learn more about your audiences’ tastes and preferences is a good idea and an important step to maximize performance.

# 4 | Embrace new ad formats

Hootsuite recommends that marketers avoid thinking of digital ads in the same conventional formats.

Today, embracing new and innovative options can help companies better engage with the audience.

New-age customers, for example, are more likely to check out an Instagram story ad and get influenced by a new Snapchat filter, as compared to standard picture posts on Facebook or Instagram.

# 5 | Split-test for success

While advertisers usually have a finger on the pulse of what their customers want, the reality is that customer behavior cannot be predicted accurately.

As a result, experienced marketers use A/B tests or split tests to understand which social media ads are being engaged with the most — at the start of the campaign — to determine where the bulk of the ad-spend must go to make the campaign a success.