by Nel Red
The number one goal of advertising is to get people to take some sort of action. You want them to change their current thought process or activity level and make a decision to buy your product, investigate your services or support your cause.
The sheer number of marketing techniques available to the modern company can be overwhelming. To narrow it down, here are three methods with proven results:
Online Video Advertisements
Launching video ads via YouTube and similar sites is much cheaper than purchasing static spots on television. You can pay to have your ad appear before other videos, increasing the number of people who see it, or promote the ad yourself via social media and other sites. Getting views for online ads can be tough and there are millions of competing videos available for users. However, numerous companies have found success with this model. In fact, during June 2012, five separate companies reached a landmark 1 billion views of their online video ad, according to comScore. According to the same site, Americans view close to 10 billion online advertising videos every month. Successful ads are funny, interesting, educational or surprising.
Social Media Marketing
A huge driver for popular culture is social media. From Twitter to Facebook, these are the sites where you can find out about trends, public opinion and the latest favorite product. It is no surprise that advertisers are making use of existing platforms for their message. In fact, according to media forecasters BIA/Kelsey, social media advertisements are up 21 percent year over year. Marketing via social media can involve purchasing ad placements on sites like Facebook, or creating a profile for your business and interacting directly with the customer. Providing advice, fun content and Q&A sessions are great low-cost ways to engage consumers.
Search Engine Optimization
According to Internet Retailer, online shoppers will spend $262 billion dollars in 2012. In order to slice a piece of that pie, however, you need to ensure that those consumers can find your site and products. Even if you do not have an online retail site, providing company information online can help generate interest or walk-up business. Since the vast majority of users locate what they want online by using a search engine, it pays to rank high in search engine results. You do this by optimizing your webpage through keywords, relevant content and back links. Providing content that is useful, such as product reviews, how-to articles or multi-media presentations increases advertising power on your website. When people are inspired to share your content, you get online word-of-mouth marketing.
The goal of advertising should not be limited to additional traffic on your site or in your store. It should be to engage the consumer in a manner that encourages change. A visit to your site is just a statistic if that person does not make a choice for action.
Nel Red writes for several higher-education blogs. Interested in advertising? Several universities offer a mass communications degree that can prepare you to enter into the advertising industry.