Startup traction channel: Social media ads and display ads

social ads


This blog article is based on the 3 Things This Week’s edition dated 21st June 2018. The theme of this edition is “social media ads and display ads”, one of the traction channels popularly used by many startups!

The most familiar examples of non-SEM ads are the banner ads (also known as display advertising) that you see on websites all over the Internet. More recently, social ads (like those near your Facebook timeline or promoted tweets in your Twitter feed) have exploded in popularity as more people spend time on social sites.

Large display advertising campaigns are often used for branding and awareness, much like offline ads. Yet display advertising can also elicit a direct response, such as signing up for an email newsletter or buying a product. On the other hand, social ads are best when approached indirectly, where you build an audience, engage with that audience over time, and eventually convert them into customers.

Display Advertising – Most display advertising is run by ad networks that aggregate advertising inventory across thousands of sites (blogs, community sites, etc.) and sell that space to advertisers. For advertisers, they can buy ads on multiple sites through a single service. At the same time, sites can monetize their content by working on just one platform.

Social Ads – Think of the difference between search and social ads in terms of demand harvesting and demand generation. Consumers often see targeted search ads alongside their search results. This is demand harvesting – individuals are looking for a product (demand), and companies pay to get their attention (harvesting). Social ads, by contrast, work especially well for demand generation, i.e. generating interest from new potential customers. People who see these ads may not have any intention of purchasing now – they may not even be familiar with the company or its products. The goal of social ads is often awareness-oriented, not conversion-oriented. A purchase takes place further down the line.  Here are some well-known social sites where you could advertise – LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, StumbleUpon, Quora,  Reddit,  BuzzFeed, Scribd, SlideShare, Pinterest, etc.

Here are this week’s 3 things.

Thing # 1: The Small Business Guide to Social Media Advertising

It’s important for your small business to have a presence on at least some of the more prominent networks, like Facebook or LinkedIn. Social media advertising helps you get more bang for your marketing buck while reducing the amount of time you personally have to spend on social media. In this guide, you’ll find the steps, solutions, and goals to help you maximize your social media profits with advertising — even with a small-business budget.

Thing #2: Tutorial: Easy to Make Display Ads for Non-Designers

Display ads are the type of advertisements seen all over websites. They can be the boxes off to the side of websites, banners along the top of pages, or even layered within the content.  If you’re looking to build a display campaign for your business, here’s an easy way to make custom display ads using Shutterstock Editor. Editor is a free photo editing program that you can use to edit images and add elements like text and shape layers.  In this quick tutorial, you learn how to make a trendy display ad in just minutes.

Thing #3: The #1 Reason Paid Ads (On Search, Social, and Display) Fail

Pouring money into a paid ad campaign that’s destined to fail isn’t a sound growth strategy. Time and again, companies breaking into online ads don’t see success due to the same issue: they aren’t known to their audiences. There’s no trust, no recognition, and so the cost per click remains high and rising. This article identifies the cycle many brands get trapped in and outlines a solution to make those paid ad campaigns worth the dollars you put behind them.


What has been your experience with this traction channel?  What kind of social ads are giving you results? Share in the comments.



Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.