However, often implementing PPC advertising can be both expensive and time consuming, as the task of converting clicks (which costs the business money) into sales can be perilous. As with social media campaigns PPC has been regarded as a popular marketing and advertising tool, but similarly it is often not planned and implemented effectively.
The emergence of PPC advertising models on social media websites has given the advertising model a new lease of life as the calibre of information on social networking sites can be utilised in order to increase precision in targeting potential customers.
Facebook’s PPC platform is effective in tailoring ad placement. The service allows businesses to target people’s profiles based on the information they provide on Facebook. Information such as age, sex, marital status and interests are criteria which aid the strategic placement of ads on the website. This increases the validity of the advert upon initial contact with consumers. In-line with search engine PPC the ads are non-invasive, but have the additional advantage of allowing users to ‘hide’ ads which they are not interested in. Another plus is that Facebook allows images to be added to advertisements, increasing their appeal.
Samsung UK’s use of Facebook’s advert service is indicative of its effectiveness. Leading up to the launch of their compact tablet computer the Galaxy Tab they sought to create a buzz on the web. The company launched a campaign which included interactive polls and video engagement adverts in order to draw traffic to their fan page. They also used a media buy on Facebook called a reach block on the launch day of the device. This enabled Samsung UK to reach 100 percent of their target audience (UK adults aged 18 and over) in a 24-hour period. As a result of the campaign their brand awareness rose 9 points among Facebook users and purchase intent for the Galaxy Tab rose by 18 points.
Other social networks use PPC in a similar fashion to Facebook. LinkedIn for example allows advertisers’ access to a desirable niche demographic of professional business people. With over 120 million members, LinkedIn proposes that by placing an ad on the site you can potentially target 4.2 million corporate executives and 1.3 million small business owners. The range of criteria which LinkedIn allows advertisers to manage strategically includes: job title and function, age, location, industry and company size as well as LinkedIn groups—which often are related to the user’s occupation.
PPC can still be an effective tool in driving traffic to websites, however it is essential to ensure that the potential interest of the consumers the adverts will target is maximised. Ensuring your company uses the right platform for your needs, focuses on the correct demographic and plans adequately will aid your PPC success.