A Simple Guide to Getting Started with Digital Ads

By Catharyn Pilch

You have started your business, and you are excited. Now you want other people to know about the great products and/or services you provide. You know this is the digital age, but you are not exactly sure the best way to get exposure using that medium. What you need is a simple guide to getting started with digital ads. That’s where we come in.

Step 1: Brand

First you need a brand, including logo, that is unique and precisely expresses who and what your business is about. The importance of a unified look and how it can not only help you focus as a company but gain and retain customers can be read about here. Once your brand is in place and well-define, you need to get it noticed by potential clients.

Digital advertising is a great way to reach a large amount of people, especially for companies with a smaller marketing budget. But, there are still a few more things you need to do before you dive into new-age advertising.

Step 2: Clients

You need to know the needs and pain points of your current clients, what your target group is of potential customers, and where to find them. Thinking your clients could be anyone and anywhere is entirely too general. You need a specific demographic on which to focused your marketing spend. This does not eliminate anyone as a potential client, but it focuses your efforts. Inc.com suggests you look at your current client base to determine where to place your attention. They also advise to not go after the exact same group as your competitors and to instead “find a niche market they are overlooking.”

Step 3: Goal

What is the goal of your online advertising campaign? You want to increase website traffic? Add regular customers to your growing business? Be as specific as possible. For example, “I want more people to order clothing from my online site.” Measuring the success of your digital ad campaign will help shape future ad campaigns so your goals must be attached to cost. How much should each additional sale you make or customer you gain cost? As Main Street ROI says, you need to “know your numbers.”

Step 4: Tool Cooperation

Find the tools that will work well together to achieve your established goals under budget. As Digital Marketing Institute advises: “Ask yourself: ‘What are the channels’ strengths and weaknesses? How will they help me reach my business objectives?’” Create a calendar for when you will post, email, and advertise on online platforms that reach your customers. Start writing now and post later. Make sure you keep your brand in mind and keep your writing to match what you intend to project to your target audience. If you are unsure how to write you can hire someone to freelance write for your company. If you are also unsure which online platforms meet your needs you can hire a marketing agency to help you navigate this new territory and get your business going. Not sure if you are ready to hire a marketing agency? Read this article to help you determine if it is time to take the plunge and partner with an agency. 

Step 5 Review

After trying your digital ad campaign for some time, analyze what it has done for you. Did you reach your goals at an acceptable cost? Where was your strategy most successful? Least successful? A couple key numbers you will want to consider are:

  • Cost-per-impression (CPM): The cost per 1,000 views on an ad. This means you are charged every 1,000 views, whether or not an individual actually clicked on your ad. CPM campaigns are great for brand awareness, but there is no guarantee they will result in any clicks to your website. You can expect to  roughly spend anywhere from $2-$7 on average per result.
  • Cost-per-click (CPC): Also known as PPC (pay-per-click), this form of online advertising charges you every time someone clicks on your ad, which leads a user to a landing page for your business. They do not have as high of a reach, but they do guarantee clicks based on your budget. We recommend keeping your costs per result under $1 for this type of advertising.

The lower cost per result, the better your ad is performing. Implement change and continue to get the word out and grow your business.

One of the main keys to advertising online is to check and monitor your ads regularly. While this is a little more difficult to do with print and traditional advertising, as its harder to track results, digital ads allow you to analyze what is working and not working so that you can adjust accordingly and continue to improve.

Did you learn anything from this simple guide to getting started with digital ads? Anything unique you have tried and would like to contribute? Comment below with your thoughts!

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