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Head of Strategy Insight: Choosing the right amplification channel [quiz]

Head of Strategy Insight: Choosing the right amplification channel [quiz]

When it comes to amplifying your content, too many marketers will throw everything against the wall until something sticks. Years ago, when there was very little research on using amplification channels effectively, this strategy was sometimes the best you could manage.

These days it’s very easy to understand which network works best for your business. This will save you time and money, and allow you to reach your target audience quicker and more effectively.

This article will explore Google Ads, Facebook Ads, and LinkedIn Ads, and look at when they are most appropriately used.

After we explore each network, there will be a list of examples. See if you can correctly guess which network (or networks) is most appropriate for each one. The answers can be found at the bottom of the article.

Google Ads

Google Ads (formerly AdWords) is the original amplification network. This is simply paying for your pages to appear on certain search results pages. Before the introduction of social media amplification, you were very limited in your choices.

User intent

When it comes to someone using a search engine, you need to make sure you understand why they are doing what they are doing.

Typically people use search engines to get answers to questions.

So when deciding whether Google Ads is right for you, the first thing to look at is whether people will actually perform searches where your pages are what they want to see. Put another way, is your product or service the answer to a query that they would make? There are too many obvious cases where Google Ads isn’t appropriate, yet marketers burn through so much money chasing a result.

Topic selection

Once you have settled on Google Ads and are comfortable it is the appropriate network, you need to ensure you have the right topic or idea to advertise.

The majority of pages on your site, or high value content you plan to use on Google Ads, should be tailored to answering a question or selling something. Though this isn’t a hard and fast rule.

Answering a question isn’t as simple as writing an FAQ-style article and promoting it. Actually that’s not a great idea at all. Instead you should offer something of high value (an eBook or whitepaper for example), and use it to capture a lead or sell your product.

Sticking an eBook or whitepaper behind a form allows you to capture high value leads. If someone gives their email address away for what you’re offering, you know exactly what that person is interested in.

If your page is sales-focused, you need to make sure it’s properly UX optimised to showcase your offering without scaring away the visitors. Remember, you are paying for every click so make sure you take full advantage of the quality traffic coming to your page.

Facebook Ads

Facebook Ads has made a powerful run in the past few years, rising up the advertising ranks. 93% of marketers use Facebook Ads regularly. Personally, I think this is a horrifying stat. This is a perfect example of marketers just hoping for the best, as Facebook Ads just aren’t appropriate for many businesses.

User intent

A huge mistake commonly made by marketers is not understanding the types of people using Facebook, and what they do and don’t want to see.

Ask yourself the question – why do you use Facebook? How many times does the answer come up ‘to buy something’ or ‘to find the answer to my question’? Both of these are scenarios much better suited for Google Ads, yet are commonly used as Facebook Ads strategies.

Topic selection

When we looked at Google Ads we saw that the types of pages we want to advertise are typically answering a question or are sales-focused. You can throw that out the window on Facebook.

Generally, people don’t want to be sold to while browsing Facebook. So to get around this, you need to sell to them without them knowing it!

If you have a product no one even knows exists, Facebook is an ideal platform. Facebook is very visual, so showcasing your unique product can work very well. If you’re in the business of selling plain white paper, maybe it won’t!

Clickbait also works. This might seem controversial, but if done correctly, it’s very effective. I’m not saying to create content like “you will NEVER believe what’s behind this door” – that’s just tacky. The clickbait I’m referring to is subtle enough to entice people to click – ‘good clickbait’ is clear about what the audience will get when they make the jump to your content, but leaves them needing to know the details.

LinkedIn Ads

LinkedIn Ads is one of the most underutilised advertising networks, particularly in the B2B world. When you sign-up and optimise your personal LinkedIn account, think about how much data you are giving them by way of job title, past history and the company that you work for.

And all of that data is available for ad targeting. You can literally offer  a product only to people with a specific job title, at specific firms. You can’t get much more precise than that.

User intent

The user intent with LinkedIn Ads is similar to Facebook, but with a twist.

The similarities are the fact that it’s a social network and people aren’t there to be sold to or get answer to their questions. People are there to see how their colleagues and associates are doing, learn more about their industry, and even look for jobs. These are the areas that marketers should be taking advantage of.

Topic selection

The business professional crowd is very polarised when it comes to what they want to see on LinkedIn. They either love it or hate it – there’s no middle.

Memes, jokes, and lighter content is typically met with ‘this isn’t Facebook!’ rage.

They also hate being sold to. Many are in sales and marketing jobs and they know exactly what you’re trying to do. You need to be more subtle about it.

You need to be solutions-focused. While plenty of topics will work on LinkedIn, the most effective will be you solving a business problem someone has. Money speaks and you should take advantage of that when advertising on LinkedIn.

Quiz

It’s time to put your understanding of amplification channels to the test. How many questions can you get right?

Question: Which network(s) are best suited for each of the below scenarios?

Scenario 1

You sell bananas in a very specific area and want locals to find your business. No one outside of this local area typically buys your bananas.

Scenario 2

You created an eBook titled ‘How to save money renovating your home’.

Scenario 3

You have an eBook about monetising your personal blog.

Scenario 4

You have just launched your business selling revolutionary exercise equipment that burns fat within days. No one knows this product is even a thing.

Scenario 5

You sell software that can reduce the time it takes to find ideal workplace candidates.

Scenario 6

You sell cheap, everyday electronics.

Scenario 7

You’re trying to promote your new accounting software.

Scenario 8

You sell running shoes targeted at athletes.

Scenario 9

You sell home security to people in wealthy areas.

Scenario 10

You run a personal blog with no monetisation sources.

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Answers

Hopefully you haven’t peeked at this section! If there is more than one answer, the first answer is more ideal than the second, but the second still works.

2 points for guessing the ideal network

1 point for guessing the second ideal network

Total score /20

  1. Google Ads, Facebook Ads
  2. Google Ads
  3. Google Ads, LinkedIn Ads
  4. Facebook Ads
  5. LinkedIn Ads, Google Ads
  6. Facebook Ads, Google Ads
  7. LinkedIn Ads, Google Ads
  8. Facebook Ads, Google Ads
  9. Facebook Ads, Google Ads
  10. None (no possible ROI)
Trent
Trent Paul About the author

Trent is Castleford’s top SEO expert and Head of Strategy for the business. His monthly Head of Strategy Insights column digs deep into SEO, UX, CRO and the world of social media and Google Ads campaigns.

Read more of Trent's articles