Ebook: Understanding Targeted Online Advertising for B2B
Need a starting point or “101 lesson” on the different types of targeted online advertising available today? Looking for more ways to get your brand in front of your most important prospects and customers? This ebook is perfect for both!
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It’s possible that many consumers today are more familiar with online advertising than any other type of advertising. Online advertising encompasses many types of online advertising: email, websites, mobile ads, banner ads, paid search ads, and more. This is because the online advertising definition is very simple: It’s any advertising done online.
The advantages of online advertising include the benefits of advertising in general: It’s a way to extend your brand, reach, and audience awareness. But the advantages of online marketing go beyond just that:
- Many people spend their entire day online. Online advertising makes advertising direct to the consumer extremely accessible.
- Online marketing is very affordable compared to other types of advertising, such as television ads.
- The impact of online advertising also includes the ability to leverage the advantages of multimedia advertising, through video and audio ads.
Much has been said about the importance of online advertising today, and any online advertising definition by authors will also include how online advertising works. Online advertising is created and managed differently from more traditional types of advertising. Companies have more control over their advertising, but by the same token, they also have to develop their own strategies alone. They need to figure out which channels they will use, which strategies and options they will use, and which companies they will work with.
When everything falls into place, this is extremely effective. But when it doesn’t, companies can find themselves spinning their wheels, not able to truly take control of their online advertising campaigns.
The vast majority of companies will start with Google Ads. There aren’t many free online advertising sites, but Google is a popular and affordable option. Google is the gateway to the internet for many people. There are two types of Google Ad: paid search and display.
With paid search ads, companies can pay to show up side by side on a search page after a query has launched. If someone is searching for “plumbers in Alaska,” a plumber in Alaska can pay to be included on that page. Display ads, on the other hand, are displayed on other websites. A florist might show up on a website for gift ideas.
Google Ads makes it very simple to start advertising a business almost immediately. But the problem is that it can be overwhelming to someone who isn’t well-versed in advertising strategies, and it can also become very expensive. Google charges per click rather than impression, which means once you’ve convinced a lead to click on your link, you pay for that click. But if you aren’t able to convert that lead to a sale, then that money is lost to online advertising websites.
Thus, online advertising strategies extend beyond garnering interest, and also include trying to ensure that this interest is properly scored and weighted. Companies need to focus on their own sales funnels if they’re going to get the most out of online advertising, including things like their landing pages, and their content marketing.
How can companies hit the ground running with their ad campaigns? A digital agency can help. Digital agencies help teams build, plan, and execute their digital advertising strategy. Once the strategy has been launched, it’s measured, analyzed, and audited, so that it can be continually optimized for the best results. There are agencies everywhere: The US, Europe, and even India. Of course, these companies don’t offer their services for free.
Some of the top marketing agencies include companies like Omega Digital, Digibank, and Ignite. The top marketing agencies don’t have to advertise themselves: others come to them. The top digital marketing agencies in USA are well-known, even if digital marketing company names aren’t household brands.
Of course, anyone can start an online advertising business, and not all online advertising companies are reputable. The best online advertising companies come at a hefty price tag, because they’re already working with some of the biggest brands in the industry. The digital advertising industry itself has been rapidly growing. And while online advertising companies in India may be more affordable and just as skilled, customer demographics can influence advertising choices as well.
There are no free online advertising companies, but companies can seek to self-service by going through third parties like Google Ads and Bing. Still, this isn’t as effective as an online advertising project headed by a reputable company. Before looking for online advertising companies near me, consider that online advertising companies stock is only going higher. There’s a reason why they’re so in demand, but they’re also a significant investment that has to be considered.
Free Classified Ads
Most people have used free classified ads online, but you might not have realized it. It began with free classified sites like Craigslist. You could post free classified ads in USA for anything you wanted, and someone else could buy it. This was more for individuals buying and selling products and services rather than B2B sales. It’s difficult to manage these types of ads, and because they are free, they’re flooded. Not only is there a lot of competition, but there are a lot of customers who are really “time wasters.”
There are few free ad posting sites without registration. Most people need to register, whether it’s Craigslist or OfferUp. But the people looking at these sites are usually looking for a good deal. Some of them are flipping products. Others are trying to launch extravagant scams.
Today, many people post free ads online through Facebook Marketplace. Some businesses even do so. But Facebook has created another section that’s specifically for businesses and that makes it easier for businesses to manage their listings and interact with potential customers. Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist could be a part of an online advertising campaign for some niche businesses, but if they are, then they still need a valid online marketing strategy to work with. Nothing works alone or in a vacuum.
Advertising companies are able to build multi-channel strategies that can incorporate places such as these classified sites. But ultimately, for most businesses, free classifieds ads sites aren’t going to provide much of a benefit, if at all.
Why is it so important to have advertising strategies before you begin? Advertising costs money. Online advertising will cost as much as you want it to: You set your budget, and it continues to advertise your business until that budget has been reached. But if you’re advertising aimlessly without any strategy, you’re only going to lose money.
Some companies make the mistake of looking at online advertising examples from 2015 and assuming they can conduct their own ad campaigns. But the best online ads from 2015 are already likely to be defunct as early as 2016, let alone 2020 or 2021. Online advertising methods and online advertising strategies are constantly changing. If your online advertising PDF was made six months ago, it’s probably outdated.
Companies can review the best online advertising methods 2018 and best online advertising methods 2019 to see shifts in trend. We’ve already seen mobile ads growing by leaps and bounds, and featuring far more heavily into online advertising PPT presentations. Features of online advertising (PDF or blog post) from 2000 will show garish, GIF-based ads. An online advertising PDF today will show more subdued, professional ads, that are still lively.
Strategies don’t just form a foundation to work from, but also formulate a company’s goals. Otherwise, while the company may have some vague idea of advertising, it’s not going to know what it’s working towards, and it’s not going to know whether it’s reliably getting there. The best strategies need to have long-term goals in mind, the right technology in place, and a belief that the strategy will, in fact, work.
And not all advertising strategies are going to work immediately. They have to be optimized and fine-tuned, and this can’t happen unless the strategy is being analyzed and the right metrics are being taken.
History of Advertising
The history of advertising is fast. Thousands of years ago, advertisements for local bars and inns were carved into walls. When print came into the picture, ads were printed on things like newspapers and magazines. Billboards were placed in cities, and posters were glued to walls and fences. Ads have always looked quite a lot like they look today in the digital world: catchy graphics with short taglines. Radio ads and television ads soon followed.
Even the history of online advertising, as rapidly changing as it is, still owes quite a lot to those original ads. Look at the history of print advertising, and you’ll see ads that aren’t too far off from the banner ads today. Billboards are essentially designed just like banner ads. Video ads online are just like commercials used to be, though they do tend to be briefer. And the audio ads on podcasts are almost identical to the audio ads in the radio world.
Many of the advantages of online business relate directly to the advantages of online advertising over traditional advertising. Online advertising began as text-based ads in emails and in news groups. From there, online advertising became banner ads and pop-ups. The advantages are clear: Online environments are universal and ads can’t be ignored. The disadvantages of electronic advertising, however, are the same as traditional mailers: It’s hard to know what someone is thinking through the disconnect.
The most specific difference between online advertising and historic advertising is how tightly focused it can be. Previously, commercials and billboards had to be targeted broadly, to very large demographics. Today, online advertising can be targeted to very specific demographics: age, gender, earning potential, education, location, hobbies, skills, professions, and more. This targeted advertising has made advertising far more effective. But that doesn’t mean that every company can dive in immediately and start to swim.
A research paper on online advertising PDF may show a company some of what it needs to know about advertising, but it won’t be able to formulate a plan for the business. Businesses are unique, and companies have to tailor their advertising solutions to them. Still, companies today are fortunate to live in a time when advertising is so affordable and accessible.