Digital Advertising has come a long way. The first banner ad was featured in 1994. And since then, things have become a little more complex. From Google Ads, to Spotify Ads and SnapChat and everything in between and from voice search to advanced audience targeting and the deeper use of AI in the industry, digital advertising has become anything but simple. 15 years ago, brands had a few options to choose from. At the time of writing, there are enormous number of channels to advertise online. To every business and every digital marketer, the question becomes, am I spending my advertising money in the right way? How do I get the most out of my digital advertising campaign? While many people don’t hit the jackpot and at least not from the first go, there are a lot of businesses that know how to squeeze all the juice when it comes to digital advertising.
One of the biggest misconceptions out there is that digital advertising is one size fits all. There is no magic formula that fits every single industry mind you every single business. The variables are just too many. So, when you think about how to maximise your ROI and get the most bang on your marketing buck, there are a few guiding principles that you can apply no matter where you go that can have a drammatic impact on your ROI.
Choosing the right channels
Invest time in assessing the right channels for your business. Your target audience is allover the place. How do capture their interest and engagement and at what cost is the real question. Is your target audience actively searching for your product or service or do they also highly engage with targeted ads? Are they more likely to make a decision straight away or do they need to research? There is no right or wrong, but you should do a bit of research to understand where the opportunities and where the risks lie. Some channels might be overly competitive, and these are where you need to be laser sharp with your approach and strategy if you decide to heavily participate. Some channels will be much less competitive and probably for a reason – that is your audience is not yet present there. This can also be a future opportunity if you take the lead in this channel.
For most businesses, a mix between search and display advertising is recommended. However, where do you focus more? There are a lot of determining factors. What’s your target cost per acquisition, how big is your budget, what’s your level of risk aversion, are you focused on top line or bottom line growth or both?
Conversion Rate Optimisation is your best friend
Spending your hard-earned money and not having a proper conversion rate optimisation framework is a sad story many businesses have drowned in. Whether you are doing this in house or have a digital advertising agency or a marketing consultant that does that for you, make sure you nail this before you go heavy on your spending. So, what goes in your Conversion rate optimisation? Think of the moment your prospects see an ad for the 1st time to the moment they pay you, as a production line with several machines and areas of potential bottlenecks. Your goal is to assess every single step and ensure there is nothing getting in the way.
One of the first few things you should look into, is how your landing page messaging and content aligns with your ads. Getting people through the door is very different from keeping them. Here are a few things I would be looking at”
- Is your page headline addressing the reason they clicked on their ad?
- Is your copy providing a good value proposition?
- Do you have the important content above the fold?
- Do you have a clear call to action?
A/B test everything
Before you start A/B testing, come up with a list of the things you want to test and your hypothesis for each. But never test more than one area at the same time. In statistics, they call it ‘controlling the other variables’. Another important aspect is ensuring your sample size is big enough. Let your tests run for a few days or hours depending on the size of your traffic and start to validate your hypothesis.
If done properly, you’re a/B testing can have a significant impact on your ROI.
Analytics & Reporting
Not paying attention to your analytics is like not paying attention to the signs on the road. You will eventually crash – best case scenario you won’t get were you want to go. Analytics is about understanding your customers and prospects more deeply than you do at the moment. You can pretty much measure everything now, so be careful of getting lost in the details. A good tip is to start with identifying your success metrics. Once you are 100% clear on the metrics that mean a lot to your business, start measuring them.
Founder and Managing Director of SAVV Digital, Rani Arsanios helps organisations grow their top and bottom line by enabling their digital transformation and presence through strategic digital marketing and technology solutions.