There are many factors at play when it comes to social media marketing and paid advertising. With video consumption at an all-time high, brands and influencers vying for attention online, consumer attention spans dwindling, and iOS updates posing new marketing challenges – it takes a lot for marketers to stay current.
Fractional CMO and marketing mentor for brands, Sam Ogborn shares her advice on social media marketing that converts in today’s digital landscape.
“The quest for a quick hit of dopamine has never been greater with the flood of video content on social platforms,” says Ogborn. She emphasizes that brands face two factors when it comes to paid social media marketing. “First is the sponsored icon on paid content that viewers are now conditioned to see and swipe on, and second is the thirsty, over-the-top three-second hook that makes brands look desperate for attention.”
“It’s clear that brands are beginning to recognize the fact that longer watch time increases reach, but this doesn’t necessarily equate to clicks or conversions. This means brands need to focus on creating clever content that quickly and authentically addresses consumer behavior, habits and motivations, without just trying to optimize viewership. This goes beyond stopping the scrolling and getting the click. Brands should ask themselves, “Why would a viewer buy, and now?” In 2023, viewers should be able to find out easily and quickly – and if they can’t, brands need to quickly re-evaluate their content.”
Maintain a content library
Ogborn recommends having a large content library that includes both highly productive and user-generated content (UGC) to enable brands to be plug-and-play.
“Brands should have content that tests different lyrics, sounds and hooks to find the sweet spot for viewers to drive the story forward. Many brands have always crammed content management and creation into the job of a community manager or social strategist, but it’s becoming more common for this to be a full-time job in itself, as the space is evolving far too quickly for that to happen part of it could be another role”.
Spearhead partnerships with creators
It’s important to build longer-term partnerships with content creators, and not just one-off contracts that can fail and end up not reaching the end goal.
“So many brands look at content creation from a short-term perspective. This creates many one-off partnerships with developers that can feel purely transactional and superficial. While the goal is to create content that sells in ads, finding a true partnership with UGC creators will actually get you the best content. Partnerships can take the form of a campaign or by outsourcing creation to a part-time creator who continually develops video content for your brand, which is becoming a very popular way for brands to manage the creation of their video content,” says Ogborn.
Partnerships that go beyond transactional exchanges deliver a better, more authentic message to potential customers.
“By educating creators on the ‘why’ and the issues that need to be solved for viewers, the creator has the opportunity to think more strategically about how the content they create can satisfy the bottom line. Brand partnerships go beyond creating paid content. Think about how creators can become advocates for your brand outside of paid ads. This is where relationship building can be so effective that when it comes time for more tactical ad content creation, creators are excited and motivated to get involved. Also, it never hurts to partner with some sort of affiliate program so creators have more incentive to create content that converts.”
Striving for higher conversions and better attribution beyond meta
With the latest iOS updates, tracking the success of a marketing campaign is getting harder and harder. This is because the update gives users an option to turn on privacy protection that blocks their IP address, disables pixel tracking, and hides emails so clicks in email marketing campaigns cannot be tracked. All of this can prevent brands from seeing attribution metrics like email open rates, conversions, and measuring Facebook ad success.
“iOS changes have become Meta’s worst nightmare. I see many brands being more open to testing new platforms where they can get a clearer picture of their attribution to paid advertising, as well as just better overall performance. As a result, I think we’ll see much higher CPMs on platforms like TikTok as brands start shifting their ad dollars away from meta, and we’ll also see brands branch out to test ads on platforms like Pinterest, where shopping becomes a has become a bigger priority.”
She points out that even Google, with its recent announcements of more visual search and shopping, sees an opportunity to grab a piece of the paid market.
Attribution is the name of the game right now, and every platform wants credit.