In today’s digital, content-saturated world, it’s no secret that we marketers are all battling to connect, engage and inspire action from our respective audiences. As a result, having an integrated content marketing strategy is of paramount importance.
As a matter of fact, 80% of B2B marketers have some sort of content marketing strategy in place, according to the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs.
But, the question is: Are you using all the weapons in your content marketing arsenal?
Including digital advertising such as paid search ads, boosted social posts or remarketing in your tactical mix can help you hit your target. How? Well, consider the following facts and stats:
- Marketing expert Sonny Ganguly says social media advertising is set to explode in the next three years because it helps businesses find new potential clients by using users’ own shared information to identify interest. (Source)
- Users who are retargeted are 70% more likely to convert. (Source)
- A bakery saw a 35% increase in conversions and a 330% increase in impressions on the Google Display Network. (Source)
- When it comes to remarketing, Wordstream found that conversion rates increase the more users see an ad. (Source)
With a little research, planning and testing to find the right mix for your brand, digital advertising can round-out your integrated content marketing strategy. Use some of our tips below to ensure you’re getting the most out of your paid efforts.
Direct Hit: Connect with the people you know.
Marketers have a detailed picture of who they want their content to reach. And the first target is usually the known audience.
Your digital advertising weapon of choice? Remarketing or account-based style paid advertising programs.
Your known audience is the low-hanging fruit for engagement and it’s typically receptive to your content regardless of the topic. These people could be current or past customers, brand advocates, industry influencers you’ve connected with or your social following.
As an example, a TopRank Marketing client recently launched a new product within their suite of SAS software. The client knew their audience, but wanted direction on how to get the new product in front of them. We recommended a remarketing program.
The program involved remarketing several key pieces of content to different segments of our “known” target audience with the ultimate goal of driving demo’s for the new software. The result? A 26% percent increase over their current advertising tactics.
Depending on your brand, one way to get the most out of your remarketing efforts is by spreading your targeting over multiple channels. Your audience isn’t just on one channel so showing your ads on multiple platforms will help you reach your audience wherever they are.
New Alliances: Your untapped audience.
Digital advertising allows brands to target a specific audience using keywords, affinity, topics, interests, demographics, geographic criteria, title, company—and the list goes on and on.
The tactical advantage? Delivering topical, relevant content to a previously unknown audience.
When should you use this tactic in your content marketing strategy? When you want to fill the pipeline, drive additional sales, increase product visibility or build brand awareness.
As another example, a healthcare technology client recently created several assets surrounding a dramatic change within their industry. This information was useful to a large audience and presented an ideal opportunity to reach out to those consumers via paid promotion. Our goal was to position our client as a thought leader while filling that aforementioned pipeline.
Using several targeting methodologies we were able to drive extremely high engagement with a relatively untapped audience. And the engagement numbers significantly surpassed historic performance.
If you’re just getting started with a campaign, test different messaging styles and tones, and offer different calls-to-action and assets. If you do this, you’ll soon have a clear understanding of the type of content your audience is asking for and how they want that information delivered to them.
Special Forces: Discover insights that allow you to tailor content to your audience, known and unknown.
Having accurate intel is important to every mission. When you launch a digital advertising campaign, whether it be on social platforms or search engines, you begin to collect valuable insights and metrics that you can use to plan your next move.
For example, paid search campaigns feature search query reports. These reports show all of the search queries that resulted in your ad being shown. You’re able to see exactly what people are searching for, and use that information to create content that fits with the intent and terminology your audience is actually using.
Make sure all of your tracking dots are connected so you can review the data for even better better targeting and content on your next mission. For example, if you’re running paid search ads on Google, make sure you have a campaign synced to your Google Analytics account or whatever tracking software you might be using. This will ensure that the proper data collection is happening. You’ll easily be able to evaluate what is and isn’t working as consumers move through your landing page and dive deeper into your site.
It’s also a good idea to look outside the chosen tracking platform for other engagement data. This allows you to add some additional context to the data you’re receiving, and this is often the true test of content and paid promotion.
The digital world is a marketing battlefield where an integrated plan of attack is essential to survival. And adding a digital advertising program to your marketing mix will help you gain a tactical advantage. From using remarketing to keep your products top-of-mind to targeting new customers through paid search, digital advertising programs not only support your content marketing efforts, but provide a nice little boost, too.
What’s been your experience with digital advertising? What type of paid ads have been the most successful or least successful for you? Tell us in the comments section below.
Want to learn more about digital advertising and how it can fit with your content marketing strategy? Check out this case study that details how LinkedIn ads helped a B2B company generate 75% more leads at a 40% lower cost!
Header image via Shutterstock