Do You Need to Promote Your Business? Put a Bit of Money in Online Adverts
The simplest rule of advertising is to follow the customer. For some businesses, this has meant advertising in industry magazines and newspapers used by their target customer. For others, it has been targeting TV or radio; wherever they can reach the largest audience.
In the digital age, however, a vast majority of a business's audience is online and by harnessing the power of the internet and social media, a company can reach the right people at the right times more easily than ever before. But how does a small or medium business assert themselves when outbid and out-manoeuvred by the big names at every turn? Here we look at the realm of niche advertising online, where a business can get ahead by reaching their real target audience in several diverse and engaging ways and achieve concrete results.
What Makes Online Advertising Different?
In principle, online advertising is no different than any other kind. It’s about putting yourself in the eye-line of the right customers. However, with the ability to track user interactions down to the finest detail and a plethora of advertising platforms, it becomes infinitely easier to target more specific demographics. Plus, with the global reach the internet can offer, even the most specific product types can still find valuable customer numbers. So, where do we start?
While you might not think that anything under the Google banner can be considered niche, the way that Google’s advertising platform works makes it extremely good at helping you to zero in on your target market.
Offering adverts on a network of websites, in shopping results, search engine results, mobile adverts and more, there are no shortage of channels available to find your audience. However, it is Google’s array of targeting options that ensure you're truly able to reach the right customers. Adverts can be tailored to only show at specific times and in specific locations, and been seen exclusively by people searching for or visiting websites that match your product.
Alternatively, Microsoft’s Bing search engine offers a similar system to AdWords, albeit to a smaller market.
Video Advertising on YouTube
While also a subsidiary of Google, YouTube puts a digital spin on classic TV advertising. In fact, since Google bought over YouTube in 2006, they have been doing everything they can to monetise the product, focusing on making it a better platform for advertisers.
With YouTube advertising, you can tune your adverts to the industry or service shown in videos people are watching. A tool shop for instance can have their adverts applied to DIY videos, ensuring a more accurate targeting of demographics than TV adverts can achieve.
Social Media Advertising
With over 2.3 billion active accounts, it seems a no-brainer to advertise on at least one social media platforms. But which one?
As of November 2016, Facebook was still the most popular social media website, with over one billion estimated unique monthly visitors. With Facebook advertising, you can place your adverts directly in the newsfeeds of an audience broken down by their interests, age, profession, gender and plenty more besides.
It also features options to like, share, visit website or visit the company's Facebook page as well as offering promotion on Instagram, giving you plenty of scope to get what you want out of your adverts.
While smaller in traffic volumes than Facebook, Twitter makes up for this with the regularity at which visitors check in. The simple layout and nature of the platform also makes it prime real estate for the right kind of advertiser.
Twitter advertising is commonly used to promote short term offers or impulse buys due to its fast pace and short bursts of use.
As a network for businesses and professionals to interact, LinkedIn might seem less suitable to many advertisers. However, for those with commercial or ‘business to business’ services or products, LinkedIn provides a respectable platform from which to attract new interest.
Websites, Blogs & Forums
Much like the tried and tested method of advertising in a relevant industry magazine, you can apply for advertising space with the same magazines and businesses who have now shifted much of their services or promotion online. Many businesses with good traffic volumes offer advertising options through their website and have a marketing team on hand to provide information and support on getting started. In addition, blogs and forums are a great alternative platform which can offer just as many valuable customer numbers.
The difficulty with this kind of niche advertising is tracking the success of the campaign. Make sure that they can provide some level of feedback, and that you can track the advertising data at your end, whether through Google Analytics or your own website monitoring tools.
Make Sure You Know Your Demographic
If you are going to take up any of the above advertising options online, make sure that you do some research first. In fact, for any kind of advertising, knowing your market inside and out is vital, so take some time, read up and find the best niche advertising that will bring new clients and customers to your business.