Building The Arch: Paid Search, Social & Display Ads

Building The Arch: Paid Search, Social & Display Ads

May 19, 2020
(Reading time: 3 - 5 minutes)

In my previous posts, I have covered a lot of ground, from pillar pages and blogs to landing pages and social media. In this post, I want to summarize paid ads, primarily on display, search, social ads and pay-per-click.

I will be 100 percent honest with you, I am not a fan of paid ads or paid media. I run an ad blocker on most of my devices. Regardless of my personal experience or feelings on them, I will agree they have their place when it comes to overall marketing strategy. When clients ask me about paid ads or paid media, I will often equate them to a drug or a quick fix. They can help you get a quick boost in traffic and quickly fill the pipeline.

Defining the terms

Pay-Per-Click Advertising

This is not a comprehensive list, but let's quickly define the terminology we will use for the rest of this post:

  • Pay-per-click (PPC) is typically referred to as the ads running on search engines, but can also refer to ads used around the web. You will pay per each individual click on the ad and this can be a quick way to get to the top of the page, but depending on your industry it can get costly quickly. You may also see them called cost-per-click (CPC).
  • Cost-per-mille (CPM) or cost-per-thousand are ads sold based on how many thousand times an ad is seen. The easiest way to think of this is to relate it to traditional print advertising, where your ad was placed in 1000 newspapers and therefore was seen by 1000 readers.
  • Paid media is a broad term for paying to promote your content through sponsored social media posts, display ads, paid search results, video ads, pop-ups, and other promoted multimedia.
  • Display ads or banner ads as they are sometimes referred to, are ads similar to what you would find in a more traditional form such as a newspaper or magazine. They are graphically rich and may or may not have animation. You will find them placed in high-traffic locations on webpages. They are designed to help create brand awareness and generate click-throughs, leads and ultimately sales. For the sake of this post, we are going to lump Facebook Ads here as well.
  • Paid social media or paid social ads is a way of sponsored marketing messages or displaying advertisements on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn. They allow you to target a specific sub-audience. It can include branded or influencer-generated content, pay-per-click advertising, and display ads on the networks.
  • Facebook boosted post is essentially an ad but simplified and designed to look like a regular Facebook post.
  • Paid search ads utilize the search engines to display text ads on the search results page and they are the most common type of pay per click marketing.

Paid Search Ads

Paid search ads utilize the search engines to display text ads on the search results page (see example below) and can provide a quick way to generate traffic to a website. Google AdWords (or Google ads) is by far the most popular platform followed by Bing Ads.

These are by far the most common form of advertising on the web and are tied to certain keywords or keyword phrases. Because the ad is so highly targeted it should provide high-quality leads. However, cost can be a contributing factor. On average small businesses will spend between $9,000 and $10,000 per month running this type of ad.

Be sure to include a call to action to tell the viewer what you want them to do. PPC advertising without a clear message is not always effective.

Social Ads

I am sure we can all admit that social media is both a blessing and a curse. Regardless of your feelings or mine on them, the fact is since their inception in 2004, they have grown exponentially and are ultimately here to stay in one form or another.

Currently, social ads are the fastest-growing segment of paid advertising. All the platforms allow you the advertiser to highly target and segment your audience making it a dream for you.

On average you will need to budget at least $1,000 a month for each social media platform you want to advertise on.

Examples of Social Ads

Social Ad Facebook Boosted Post By Infographics Online
Social Ad On Facebook By Airstream
Social Ad On Facebook By Caterpillar
Social Ad On Facebook By Hellofresh
Social Ad On Facebook Video By Fedex
Social Ad On Facebook Video By Yeti
Social Ad On Linked In Sponsored Content By Adobe
Social Ad On Linked In Sponsored Content By Hubspot
Social Ad On Twitter Promoted Tweet By Airheads
Social Ad On Twitter Promoted Tweet By All

Display Ads

Display, banner and Facebook ads can all be lumped together. They are the ads you normally see at the top and side of webpages. You may also see them inserted into the body of an article or as the dreaded pop-up we all learned to despise 15 years ago.

Examples of Display Ads

While they can help provide a more visual means of getting your message across, for most small businesses they are cost-prohibitive on most highly trafficked websites. However, if your audience is active on a smaller more localized website, then it may be worthwhile looking into placing ads.

Be careful to know if you are paying per impression or per click and the costs associated with them. Also, know the click-through rates of your ads for the best effectiveness.

Final Thoughts

Determining which advertising campaign type and platform is best for your business, church or school or even if it is justifiable is something that you will either need to decide on your own or discuss with your content marketing agency. The bottom line is you need to be where your audience is regardless of your own thoughts on a particular platform. 

If you find yourself being overwhelmed and in need of help, feel free to contact us and we will be glad to help you better understand your content strategy and how these types of advertising can be incorporated.

Chad Treadway

Written by:  |  May 19, 2020

Chad is a Partner and our Chief Smarketing Officer. He will help you survey your small business needs, educating you on your options before suggesting any solution. Chad is passionate about rural marketing in the United States and North Carolina. He also has several certifications through HubSpot to better assist you with your internet and inbound marketing.

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