Getting Started with Paid Social Advertising: A Beginner’s Guide

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Nowadays, it’s tough to miss paid social media advertising. 3.2 billion people use the internet worldwide. There are approximately 7.5 billion people in the world, of which approximately 2.5 billion use social media, with Facebook having approximately 1.9 billion unique users per month.

Any online marketing strategy needs to include social media in order to be successful, as shown by these statistics.

If you use social media, you probably signed up for it because it was free. Therefore, the concept of “paid social” seems contradictory. Why would you want to pay a social media platform? If you’re willing to pay to play on social media, which platform is the best to use?

Why Paid Social Advertising Matters

When it comes to advertising your business online, there are 3 main reasons why you should consider paid social:


Paying for social advertising is a good idea because without paying, your business’s social media presence is probably not doing much good.

Only a very small percentage of people who “like” your Facebook page will ever visit your business’ page or your website, and an even smaller percentage of those people will make a purchase.

Without spending money on social media ads, your only option for gaining social media exposure is through word-of-mouth, which may not be very effective.

With paid social advertising, you can share your content with people all over the world. These ads not only increase brand awareness for viewers, but can offer a whole range of ways for viewers to interact with your company. This can include activities such as browsing and purchasing items, redeeming offers, filling out forms and downloading apps, often without even leaving the social media platform! Your average organic social media post can’t do that!


Although you can reach a wide audience with social media, your ads don’t have to be indiscriminate.

Social media platforms have a lot of information about their users, which you can use to target your desired audience with pinpoint accuracy.

The audience for each social media platform is different. This allows you to make your advertising more effective by targeting the places where your customers like to spend their time.

I’ll discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the industry’s leading companies in more detail later.


A little while ago, I mentioned that counting on people to tell others about your social media presence may not be the best idea. This is true if paid social campaigns are your only marketing strategy. However, if you also utilize word-of-mouth marketing, you can reach a larger audience without spending any additional money.

Most people use social media to connect with others who have similar interests. If you can make your paid social content engaging, then there is a chance that the person will share it with others who have common interests, but did not see your ad.

If a friend tells you about a product, you are likely to trust their opinion more than you would if you saw an advertisement for the same product. People value the opinion of a friend more than any type of ad.

If you want your social media efforts to be more effective, try using paid social avenues to get exposure, and then rely on word-of-mouth marketing to do the rest.

Put your Money Where Your Market is

We’ve looked at some of the advantages of paid social advertising, so now let’s take a look at some of the key players in the industry to help you decide if it’s right for your company.


Facebook Ads is the obvious place to start. It has over 1.9 billion registered accounts, making it the current industry leader.

The reach of Facebook is unmatched by any other social media platform. It has also been around for a longer period of time and has been offering advertising options for a longer period of time than any other platform.

This experience has given Facebook the opportunity to create some great advertising options. Facebook’s paid social options give you a lot of different ways to target your audience, as well as different types of ads that can fit almost any business’ needs.

The Facebook Ads Manager is used to run ads on Facebook, and provides several analytics options to help track the performance of campaigns.

Facebook users are most commonly between the ages of 18 and 24, and are mostly female. Four-fifths of users spend at least 20 minutes on the site each day, so you should have plenty of time to reach your target audience with your content.


Although it is one of the newer social media platforms, Instagram has gained a lot of popularity in a short amount of time. Instagram is still attracting a different demographic than Facebook, even though Facebook bought it in 2012.

Almost 60% of Instagram users are under the age of 30, and most of them are women. The app is used frequently, with recent data showing that people aged 25 and under use it for an average of 32 minutes each day, while older users spend 24 minutes on the app daily.

In addition, Instagram is a primarily visual experience.

People are more likely to engage with visuals rather than text. Instagram advertising can be especially effective for businesses that sell products or services with a strong visual component.

Around 80% of people who use Instagram follow at least one brand on the platform, and of those people, three-quarters take some kind of action after seeing a branded post (such as visiting the company’s page). Instagram users are also much more likely to make a purchase on their mobile devices than other people who use mobile devices.

Although Instagram’s advertising is mostly limited to pictures, videos, and product carousels, its relationship with Facebook provides access to all of Facebook’s Advertising Manager tools.


I would like to talk about Pinterest, which is a social media platform that relies heavily on images. Pinterest is still working on their paid social media options and doesn’t offer as many campaign management tools or ad types as some other networks.

Pinterest’s advertising advantages are not shared by other platforms.

Users seem to prefer product pins over other pins. Posts that include pictures with prices noted get 36% more likes than those without pricing information.

Female users are considerably more likely to use Pinterest than males, so your pins have a better chance of targeting this group. Pinterest users are evenly distributed in age, with the majority of users falling between 18 and 64 years old.


Advertising on Instagram and Pinterest requires only a camera and computer (or just a camera phone), but breaking into the enormous YouTube market requires high-quality video content.

YouTube is huge. On average, people around the world spend about one billion hours watching YouTube videos every day. This is equivalent to 100,000 years, which is more than all of human history.

YouTube viewership is increasing rapidly while TV engagement has been declining steadily over the past few years, making YouTube the next big thing for video advertising.

If you can make videos that people will want to watch, they will look for your content, even if you don’t pay to have it promoted. For example, in 2014, four of the top ten most popular YouTube videos were advertisements.

How To Do Paid Marketing?

1) Discover

The first step to successful paid marketing is finding websites and platforms where you can advertise.

Typically, people begin their Google Ads journey with the Google Adwords platform. You can’t fully appreciate the functionality and beauty of something unless you spend a good amount of time understanding it. Google provides a complete course to learn Adwords. The course offers the opportunity to earn a certificate upon successful completion of the exam.

2) Offer

This is the most important and difficult part. Your offer is the guarantee you make to your potential customers in your advertisements. There are many different things that a company may offer in order to get people to buy their product, such as a free downloadable white paper or success story, registration for an event or webinar, or a free trial of the product.

You will evaluate the offer based on what you need If you need to make a decision about an offer, it is best to start from the bottom up. This means that you will evaluate the offer based on what you need. Scroll through the website’s content, taking note of the design and any other advertisements. Click on these ads to see the type of offers being promoted. Search for the keywords on the internet and see what results come up. Audience insights can help you determine what information your audience already knows and what kind of offers you can create to fill in any gaps.

Solving people’s problems works best. You will know the pain points of your target audiences after doing keyword research. When trying to help your customers, it is important to build offers that address the specific issues they are struggling with. Only then will you be able to provide them with the solutions they need to overcome their challenges.

3) Spend

Start off by trying out lots of different ideas and strategies, using only a small amount of money so you can afford to experiment with lots of different options.

Make a list of all of the places where you will advertise. When budgeting, take into account the impressions you get, the target audience, and any past experience with the platform. After confirming all these details, you can give each platform its own budget.

4) Measure

This step only requires that reports and sheets be set up one time. After you have figured out the details, the process is easy.

Use the URL parameters efficiently. Adopt a naming convention that will make it simpler to analyze data when reviewing reports.

In the source field, insert the name of the platform you are advertising. I’m sure you’ve all seen the sponsored posts on [website name]. This is an example of an advertiser paying to have their commercial message appear on [website name] in the form of a post. This allows you to see how well different campaigns and terms are doing in relation to each other.

Consider using a medium with terms such as PPC, CPA, CPM, CPV, or CPP if you are using Google Analytics to track all your marketing efforts. Google can understand that the traffic is coming from a paid medium if this is indicated. You can measure traffic from paid sources in Google Analytics using the built-in paid traffic segment.

When creating text ads, it is good practice to mention the keyword that you are targeting so that users will be more likely to click on your ad. This will help you understand how well your keywords are performing.

When performing A/B tests between different ad copies or positions that point to the same landing page, it is a good practice to track these separately. This will give you a more accurate picture of which variation is performing better. The content field in your URL can be used for this purpose.

Each marketing campaign should be given a unique name for efficient tracking.

5) Optimize

After you have set up your campaigns, made ads and landing pages that are attractive and set up tracking, the real work begins. And that is to optimize.

It will give you a feel for what happened over the past 24 hours. It is suggested that you spend the first ten minutes of your morning looking over reports and making short notes in order to gain an understanding of events that occurred in the past day. If the click-through rate is low, you can improve the quality of the ad copy or banner design. If the conversion rate is low, you may want to try a different offer or different copy on the landing page.

Since social media is such an integral part of so many people’s lives, online marketers cannot afford to ignore it. Quantity is not nearly as important as quality when it comes to your audience. Therefore, you should take the time to figure out who your target audience is before starting a paid social media campaign.

There are social media options to match the needs of any business, whether they are old or young, male or female, a businessperson or an avid DIY-er. If you can find the right social media platform for your customers, you can be where they spend their time.


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