What Digital Products Should I Be Using?

What Digital Products Should I Be Using?

Update: Facebook shuttered Jobs on Facebook (February 2023) and Instant Articles (April 2023)

I became a mom for the first time in July of 2018. You get a lot of advice as an expecting parent like “sleep when the baby sleeps”, and “don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need”, and “make sure to take time for yourself”. While these are all true, one that is 100% true, is that babies don’t come with manuals. If I have learned anything from the way that I was brought up, it is that if you eliminate choices with a child, it makes life a lot easier. For example, if I were to say to my son “do you want the blue cup today, or the red cup?” but the following day I don’t give him a choice, there is a good chance that he will lose his mind, and the world will end. If I just eliminate the choice all together, there is nothing to think about, and he gets the color cup that I give him.

So where am I going with all of this? Well, in the digital world, there are a lot of products to choose from, and with so many choices, how do you know what to utilize for your digital advertising? What products are going to work the best? It’s a loaded question because digital can work for a wide variety of different verticals, but let’s see if we can help take some of the guess work out of it.

The first question that you want to think about is what are the goals you are looking to achieve from a digital marketing campaign? More in-store sales? Getting people to sign up for a free consultation on the website? Qualified leads? More phone calls? The answers to these questions will help determine what products to use.

For increasing in-store sales, Mobile Conquesting™ and Household IP Targeting are great options Automotive is a great category for both of these products because with Mobile Conquesting™ we can do Geo-Fencing and target their competitors, so we are serving ads to people while they are at their competitors’ location. We can then take it one step further with Geo-Retargeting and continue to target people with ads after they leave the locations that we are Geo-Fencing. It also doesn’t stop there; we can add in another layer with Geo-Retargeting Lookalike, where we are following people after they leave those Geo-Fenced areas, and then targeting those people’s neighborhoods. This is a great tactic because typically neighborhoods consist of the same socio-economic status, and who doesn’t want to keep up with the Jones’? With Mobile Conquesting™, you are also able to see your return on investment with on-site visit tracking. We can show how many people saw your ad, and then went to your location within two weeks of seeing the ad. For example, if you are a Ford dealership and serve me an ad for a 2020 Ford Explorer and I go into your location within two weeks of seeing that ad, that could be considered an on-site visit. Other types of businesses that are interested in Mobile Conquesting™ are furniture stores, restaurants, concerts, events, colleges, breweries, wineries, retail, and other businesses that have foot traffic. For Household IP targeting with automotive, they can use a list that they currently have, and target just those houses. Maybe they have a list of address from people that have signed up for test drives but never made a purchase, or they could have a list a people that come in for service work, or they could use a list of people that are coming up on the end of their lease period. Other types of businesses that are interested in using Household IP Targeting include Heating & Air companies, non-profits who are fund raising, and any type of business that has a robust database and tracks the addresses of the people they sell to or schedule appointments with because we can do “match back analysis”.  With the match back analysis, we would take a list of who was sold to, or made an appointment, and match that against the list of household address that we were targeting with Household IP Targeting. This is another great way to see that return on investment.

For business that are looking for website traffic and conversions on their website, Native ads and Display ads are both great options to recommend. Certain verticals that are a good fit for these strategies could be banks and credit unions, law firms, insurance companies, e-commerce, dentists, retirement communities and facilities, medical spas, and colleges and universities. With these types of verticals, people are typically looking around and doing their research before they make a purchase decision or decide to take that next step. Both Native and Display ads have multiple strategies to reach people during different stages of the sales funnel.  With both products we can target with Behavioral Targeting which is showing your Native or Display ad to people that have shown specific behaviors or are in certain demographics. As consumers, everything that we do online is tracked, which then puts us into different buckets of behaviors which business owners can than target. For example, if I Google “mortgage rate calculator” that could put me in various categories such as mortgage loan, new homeowner, home loans, or home insurance”. Now I could start seeing native or display ads for a mortgage company, or maybe an insurance company.

We can also use Keyword Targeting, which is showing a Native or Display ad on web-pages that contain keywords that are related to the advertiser’s business. When people are interested in something, or doing their research, they are using specific keywords. For example, if I recently walked up in my attic and noticed there was mold on the roof, I would start doing my research about what to do when you find mold and going to websites to read up on it. So, if a home restoration company was doing Keyword Targeting and “black mold” was a keyword they were targeting, that would trigger an ad for the home restoration company to appear on that page.

We can also use Artificial Intelligence which is using machine learning to target consumers based on who is engaging with the ad. This strategy is going to going to take the guess work out of who the target audience is for that business who wants to advertise and let the machine learning target people that are showing similar online behaviors, have similar characteristics, etc., and start showing the ad to other people like that. With Artificial Intelligence, we are reaching people in all stages of the sales funnel because it will start out wide showing the ad to anyone in that geographic area (branding and awareness), and narrows the targeting as it learns who is most likely to engage with the advertiser’s ads and targets people further down the funnel (consideration and evaluation phase).

Retargeting is another strategy that is the foundation of a good marketing campaign as we are reaching people even further down the sales funnel when they are in the conversion stage. These are people who not only know who or what the business is, but they have also been to their website. With Retargeting we will continue to follow people after they leave the advertiser’s website and show them the ad in order to get them to come back and make that conversion.

With all of the different platforms that we are able to utilize with Facebook and Instagram (Facebook News Feed, Facebook Messenger, Facebook Audience Network, Facebook Marketplace, Facebook Instant Articles, and Facebook Stories), and the different types of ads we can run (Carousel Ads, Collection Ads, Job Listing Ads, Event Response Ads, and Branded Content Ads), there are a whole lot of verticals that can benefit from running ads on Facebook or Instagram. Grocery stores, construction and home builders, resource centers, funeral homes, tax services, recruitment, and restaurants are all verticals that can benefit from utilizing Facebook and Instagram. We want to be able to target people on Facebook or Instagram, and then get those viewers to the advertiser’s website and take that step. By using all of what Facebook offers, it is a great vehicle to drive people to gather more information to take that next step.

Two products that can benefit companies are Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Live Chat. Both of these products will also reach consumers when they are further down the sales funnel. SEO works because the business’ website is found organically, and people are 25% more likely to convert when they click on a website from an organic search result. Having a good SEO ranking is going to be a benefit for any type of business, and any type of website. Ninety two percent of visitors click on the first page of Google’s search results when performing a search, leaving only 8% of searchers bother to click past the first page, so the importance of having good SEO is very high. With Live Chat, this is a way for business owners to gather qualified lead information at all times of the day and night, without the expense of paying an employee to monitor a chat box. The leads are emailed to the advertiser in real time, so they are able to follow up immediately and move that potential customer further down the sales funnel.

When it comes to business where people are looking for something immediate, Pay-Per-Click ads (also known as Google Ads or search engine marketing) are a good option for a business that isn’t the type of one where people do a lot of research before converting. Businesses like DUI lawyers, urgent care centers, plumbers, HVAC companies, and rehab centers are all verticals where people are looking for a particular need quickly, so they will click on the top listing that they see.

Geo-Framing is a product that advertisers might not use too often, but it absolutely has a place. For example, any business in the home services category where there are conventions, expos, or home shows, this is a great opportunity to go back and see how many devices ID’s were captured at that event and then we can then target in the present time. If there is a roofer that missed the Spring home show, we can go back and see how many devices we were able to capture, and then map those to those households and serve them ads in the present time. This will allow for the client to create brand awareness and top of mind awareness with people that have recently been to a specific event or location.

The last product I am going to mention is Video ads where we can utilize Over-The-Top (OTT) (streaming video content) ads, Video Pre-Roll ads, and Native Video ads. Video helps advertisers tell a story and can convey a lot more information than Display ads, in a way that makes a greater impact with greater recall. Viewers retain 95% of a video message compared to 10% when reading it in text. OTT ads are going to be a good fit for business that are looking for branding and awareness. Because these ads don’t come with the ability to click, Click Through Rates (CTR) on the OTT ad will be lower than with Display or other forms of video ads but completion rates are high, meaning people watch the video ad all the way to completion. Completion rates (percentage of people watching the ad until the end) for OTT average above 90%.

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