Using the right platform is critical to the success of your advertising campaign.
In this article, we will be going through the big 3 of digital advertising platforms: Facebook, Google, and LinkedIn. We will help you pick the right platform based on your target audience and campaign objectives.
Facebook: 2-Billion Strong and Counting
Pros: Huge base of active users, inexpensive, powerful targeting, native split testing, comprehensive data
Cons: Clutter due to the structure of the News Feed, lower click-through rate (CTR) against Google AdWords, regular algorithm changes, stricter policies due to the ‘Cambridge Analytica debacle’
With over 2 billion users, Facebook is arguably the Holy Grail for business-to-consumer (B2C) businesses. Given its high number of active daily users, you can easily increase your brand awareness and customer engagement with the right advertising campaign.
Facebook also allows you to micro-target audiences by effectively segmenting your target audience. This increases the likelihood of eliciting likes, comments, and post shares that drive up customer engagement and increase brand awareness.
Unlike Google AdWords though, it has a lower click-through rate especially in North America, meaning you end up paying more to boost your posts. It also lags behind LinkedIn in terms of connecting with clients if your business is in the B2B (business-to-business) space.
If you are adamant at taking advantage of the social network’s 2-billion user base, it is best to seek help from experts who already know the ins and outs of the Facebook advertising playbook. This can help you save time, effort, and money in promoting your business on the social network.
Google: AdWords Is the Swiss Army Knife of Paid Advertising
Pros: The largest search engine, effective for both B2B and B2C, no minimum budget, numerous advertising options
Cons: Pay-per-click model may drive up the cost if you get plenty of irrelevant clicks, harder to master even if it is easier to start on this platform, scarcity of quality keyword data since you need a bigger budget to get them
The beauty of using Google is you can really get the most out of your budget if you do things right. After all, it is the biggest search engine on the internet. People and businesses are so used to using Google to search for anything that it essentially is like breathing to them.
Google AdWords is like the Swiss army knife of paid advertising. You can effectively reach your target audience whether you are in the B2C or B2B space.
The downside though is Google has gone a long way from its earliest iteration and now its algorithm is much more complex. Sure, it is easy to start using it but to effectively master this platform is another thing. Then there is also the new AdWords Express. It is meant for pay-per-click (PPC) newbies with a smaller advertising budget and is easier to use than the traditional AdWords but has weaker reporting tools.
Being the most popular search engine in the world, Google offers a lot of possibilities for acquiring new customers. However, it can drain your budget if you do not know what you are doing. It is best to hire an advertising agency to handle your advertising campaigns on Google.
LinkedIn: The Prime Mover for Business-To-Business Engagement
Pros: Niche market, high-quality leads, free trial and demo, InMail direct email advertising, sponsored content
Cons: Limited conversion tracking, more expensive compared to other platforms
LinkedIn is a business marketer’s Cloud 9. It has high-quality leads that make it great for lead generation. More importantly, its user base is composed primarily of professionals and you can also rely on getting in touch with decision-makers.
Its InMail service also enables you to directly market to decision-makers. However, this is also one of the things that make LinkedIn appear spammy.
Surprisingly, LinkedIn is better than other platforms in promoting organic content as its user base are highly engaging. However, paid advertising is still king as it gives your business a first-class experience in reaching decision-makers. Sponsored Content helps you get your foot in the door to otherwise hard-to-reach head honchos, influencers, and decision-makers.
Nonetheless, using LinkedIn can be tricky especially if you do not have a sophisticated strategy to get your target market’s attention. It is highly recommended to engage the services of a reputable ad agency to handle your LinkedIn advertising campaigns.
Battle of the Giants: Facebook vs Google vs LinkedIn
If you are still wondering which platform to choose for your advertising campaign, here is a simple litmus test to help you.
Choose Facebook if you answer yes to the following:
- Are you targeting consumers?
- Is your main goal to drive consumer engagement and increase brand awareness?
- Do you primarily produce video content for your advertising campaigns?
Choose Google if you answer yes to the following:
- Is your advertising campaign heavily reliant on search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM)?
- Is your primary goal to position your product and services to potential customers and make it easily searchable whenever they need it?
- Do you have a team of SEO and SEM experts?
Choose LinkedIn if you answer yes to the following:
- Is the enterprise market your primary customer?
- Is your goal to easily connect with decision-makers and influencers?
- Is your business more concerned with lead generation than brand awareness?
In summary, pick Facebook as your primary advertising platform if you are primarily selling to consumers. Go with LinkedIn if you are after the enterprise market. Finally, choose Google if you want to be easily searchable by both consumers and businesses.