How Companies Can Avoid Death by Rising Advertising Costs
As if scaling a business isn't hard enough, advertising costs have risen significantly in recent years and will continue to do so. As the stakes get higher, taking organic strategic steps can help you get more for your money.
Here's where content marketing and social media strategy come into play. I view content marketing and advertising as real estate on someone's phone. If you buy that real estate while it's still relatively cheap, your business will be worth exponentially more in a few years. However, if you miss out on that opportunity, expect the value of your business to stay low.
Big companies have started taking advantage of ad space on social media, and they'll only be buying more, which will keep driving prices up. Now is the time for you and your company to get your spot in the ad space before the big players drive costs out of your reach.
I know it's tempting to pocket the profits from your business and reward yourself for hard work. But, if you're looking to play a long-term game, keep investing your money into content marketing and advertising so you can save on rising costs now and later.
If you're not investing in content marketing and advertising, you're leaving a lot of money on the table. My goal here is to show you how you can avoid that, grow and future-proof your business.
The three tips for marketing your business for growth
According to Hubspot.com, 47 percent of consumers will view at least three to five pieces of content before speaking with a sales rep; and after watching a single video, 64 percent of users are more likely to buy a product online. Similarly, Content Marketing Institute says content marketing gets three times more leads than paid search advertising.
The customer of today is armed and bombarded with more information than ever. To win them over, you need to create compelling content that stands out, conveys your advantage and delivers the value they're looking for. Then you have to get this content into the palm of your audience's hand.
Your business needs social ad content to use as vehicles that deliver value to your audience. Not only does this build significant brand equity, but your marketing costs will also drop, and returns will rise when you take a targeted approach.
The big question is what can you do within the next few months to take advantage of this opportunity to build your brand and resourcefully scale up.
1. Create valuable static content and team up.
Write four articles, create eight images with informative captions and partner with one company each month to share this content. One big hack I use to build my brands is to partner with other people that have an entirely new market to swap content with -- I post their content, and they post mine. I'm careful to make sure that their content also benefits my audience and vice versa. Guess how much this costs me? Zero marketing dollars.
2. Create video content for your business.
This is where you can't cut corners. Unless you can create high-quality video assets yourself, an essential step is hiring a videography production company like Red Wolf Entertainment that can help you create polished video content. Investing in production quality lets you create a library of high-quality content for macro video clips that tell your brand story, which you can also use to develop micro-content for 60-second or less Instagram clips. As long as the content stays up, you can bring in new potential customers. Spend a full day shooting your content and roll that out over the next six months.
In my experience, videos perform the best when they address these three questions:
- "What problem are my viewers having?"
- "What information do I have that can help them solve their problem?," and
- "How can people take action to solve their problem?"
Videos should provide valuable answers and pitch your product or service with a clear call-to-action that drives traffic to your profile or site, where you can further educate your audience. You can then boost this video on social media, or more effectively, you can partner up with 15 to 20 individuals to swap audiences and ad space. They can post your content and, in return, you can post theirs, which gives both of you a new injection of audience members.
3. Build an engaged community.
By building an engaged community around a topic or product, you will activate the best and most powerful form of advertising: word of mouth. This can be accomplished by adding a personal brand to your company and engaging with your community daily on social media. Consistency is key.
Creating a personal brand to leverage your company goes a long way to let people connect on a deeper, personal level. Now, I know some of you don't like the idea of your face being everywhere but keep in mind that creating a personal brand does not have to be "your" face -- as long as there is "a" face.
Over the last few years, I've curated my personal Instagram account that has landed me my biggest clients and partnerships such as Rolls Royce, Jacoby & Meyers and NBCUniversal through personal branding. Focusing on connecting with my audience and potential clients cost me zero dollars. Here's a direct example of a low-effort, high-impact tactic that I utilized with my following on Instagram to drive over 500 social connections within 24 hours at no cost.
Enough talk. Let's take action.
The quicker you start implementing these simple tips into your marketing and business practices, the more money you will save and make. Marketing costs, in the long run, will continually rise as advertising space becomes more competitive.
According to Recode, a general trend for Facebook over the last few quarters has been fewer impressions, higher ad prices -- Facebook says it's "running out of places to put ads in the News Feed, which means impressions should theoretically plateau over time as Facebook reaches peak 'ad load.'"
Invest today while content marketing costs are relatively low, to make sure your business grows and scales in the future.