There are many advertising channels for you to consider, but it’s important to narrow in on the platforms that perform the best for consumer services businesses. Overall, social media platforms are going to be great for brand awareness. Google and Bing ads are going to be your best option for attracting businesses who are looking to buy services.
GOOGLE & BING ADS
Utilizing Google and Bing ads can help put your business in front of customers who are shopping with intent. To do this, use targeted keywords that have high intent and offer a solution to the user’s problem within the ad.
For Google Ads, you have the option to choose to use the Search Network or the Display Network.
Search Network ads can help you target high intent keywords. They look like text ads on the search results page to help people go further in the buying cycle.
One opportunity for consumer services businesses that is unique to the Search Network is to encourage your audience to reach out and contact your business directly through call-only ads, as well as call and message extensions. This is good for encouraging prospects to schedule appointments or consultations.
Display Network ads typically show ads to people who are still in the “research” phase of the buying cycle. They can show ads on other websites with a topic related to your business, or to people who show an interest in your product or service. They can also show ads to people who have already visited your website in order to bring them back while they are researching. Using the Display Network, you also have the option to create new audiences to show ads to people who have similar traits.
You’ll be able to easily remarket to any visitor who interacts with your business without asking for their contact information because you’ll be able to place your ad on other relevant websites that they visit.
If your business targets big decision-makers of companies, even outside of a work capacity, then your business may want to utilize LinkedIn because you can advertise specifically based on job titles, company size, industry, skills, and more. Consumer services businesses in the financial industry will likely see good ROI here.
It’s important to note that since your audience is likely not actively searching for your services – like they would be on Google or Bing – they will be early in the buying cycle, and thus conversion rates are lower on LinkedIn than they are on other platforms.
However, LinkedIn has many unique benefits compared to other social media platforms. Not only can you target your audience by company, job title, industry, and more, but you can also layer multiple targeting options to reach the ideal customer.
LinkedIn ads are beneficial for lead generation efforts because you can collect prospect information directly on the platform as well as promote free estimates or consultations.
There are multiple ad types on LinkedIn:
- Sponsored content ads are similar to “boosted” posts. They are made to feel like posts from the company’s own page, which are a good option for strengthening the company’s brand awareness.
- Text ads are similar to the ads shown on Google or Bing and are featured in the sidebar. These ads are smaller and less prevalent than the other ad types but may provide a cheaper source of clicks.
- Sponsored InMail ads are unique to LinkedIn. These allow marketers to send personalized messages directly to a person’s LinkedIn inbox. This ad type is not ideally used as the first touchpoint but is great for re-engaging prospects who’ve already interacted with the business.
When it comes to choosing which types of LinkedIn ads to use, consider your goals. Sponsored content ads and text ads are great for the initial outreach to decision-makers of companies in the industry you want to target, but don’t expect many direct purchases from these ads. Sponsored InMail ads work best as part of a remarketing strategy.
LinkedIn advertising does come with a few minimums that all advertisers must spend:
- $10 daily budget per campaign
- $10 total budget per campaign (this is optional for Sponsored Content)
- $2 bid for CPC or CPM on Text Ad campaigns
LinkedIn advertising also has a minimum bid for Sponsored Content campaigns, but the exact amount for this ad will depend on the audience that you’re targeting.
Facebook & Instagram
Utilizing Facebook and Instagram ads enables you to spread awareness of your brand to virtually everyone in a specific location, if you want, and target people at a very granular level by leveraging Facebook’s robust demographic data of all their users. No other social platform allows you to target with this sort of sophistication.
Facebook and Instagram ads are beneficial for lead generation efforts because you can collect prospect information directly on the platform as well as promote free estimates or consultations.
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