Many people argue that the days of traditional advertising are coming to an end. But though we may have seen the end of advertising as we know it, one thing is certain – online ads aren’t about to fall off the marketing map. According to a report by eMarketer, global mobile ad spending will reach $100 billion in 2016, more than a 400 percent increase in relation to 2013.
What’s more, that figure is set to approach $200 billion by 2019, when annual mobile ad spending is due to exceed $57 billion in the US, $40 billion in China, $11 billion in the UK and $7 billion in Japan. It’s therefore fair to say that online advertising is not budging from marketing budgets any time soon.
Social Media: The Price of a Post
The price of social media advertising is increasing rapidly. According to data compiled by Ad Age, Instagram now charges $20 per 1,000 impressions for a sponsored photo and $30 per 1,000 impressions for a sponsored video. So as well as being savvy when budgeting for social media campaigns, marketers must pay attention to the social networks on which they choose to advertise, the audiences they target, the visual elements they incorporate and the times of day at which they push posts.
Digital marketers also need to launch communication methods that run alongside paid social media campaigns. However, this is not just because of rising CPC and CPM rates. Beyond pricing, it is the very nature of today’s social media landscape that means paid campaigns alone are simply not enough.
Paid Marketing vs People-Powered Marketing
Social media is characterized by connectivity and self-expression, which is why digital marketers need to focus on organic activity and one-to-one interaction as well as sponsored campaigns; they need to engage in people-powered marketing through brand and employee advocacy.
When you launch an employee advocacy initiative, you showcase the individuals who make up your company and provide social media audiences with people they feel they can interact with. You also expose company content to a whole new group of social media users – users who are all the more likely to engage with your content because it has been shared by somebody they know.
So rather than turning their backs on paid social media advertising, digital marketers need to align sponsored campaigns with organic brand messages and conversations. You only need to look at major international events such as the Super Bowl to see that creating a seamless transition between paid advertising and organic interaction is where the future of social media communication lies.