— April 8, 2019
When IT consultants think marketing, they typically focus on email, SEO, and other more traditional digital marketing pursuits. Like many other consultants in the B2B space, they tend to assume that their audience isn’t on social media. But not only is the IT consultant’s audience on social, there are plenty of other benefits to social media as well, including building a community around your brand, and becoming an industry thought-leader.
Paid social advertising for IT consultants is crucial to your success online. Here’s why.
Broaden Your Reach
How many followers/likes/connections do you have on your social media accounts? When you rely only on organic social media to reach your audience, you’re going to fail. According to Buffer, an organic post only reaches less than six percent of your followers. Let’s say you have a hundred followers. If you don’t use paid social advertising, you’re most likely only reaching five of them.
In today’s world, social media is essentially pay to play. This is why paid social advertising for IT consultants is so important. If you want to reach your audience and beyond, you’ll need to pay for social advertising.
Paid social advertising also helps you go beyond your audience and reach new people who may not have heard of your company. Platforms like Twitter and LinkedIn use an expanded audience network to not only place your advertisement on their platform, but to also include it in partner networks that are relevant to your advertisement. This means your ad isn’t just on social, but on a wide variety of websites as well.
Your Audience is on Social
Who is your audience? No matter where you are or who you’re targeting, your audience is on social media. Many companies in the B2B space don’t believe that social media is the right fit. But your decision-makers hang out on LinkedIn and the company you’re trying to reach has customers on Facebook. Wherever your client is, you need to be.
LinkedIn is often a good fit for consultants who want to be viewed as a thought leader and who are marketing their expertise. Whether you have a personal or company profile, LinkedIn is a great platform to showcase that expertise and interact with other industry professionals. Twitter is a great place to increase your engagement by joining in the news cycle. Posting industry news and updates is great branding. You’ll find yourself building an audience of both customers and industry professionals.
Millennials, Gen X, and Boomers are all on social media. It’s just a matter of picking the right platform and using it well.
Unlike a traditional print advertisement in a magazine or an ad you would place in a newsletter, social media advertising is pay per click. You can optimize your ads based on your objectives and only pay when you achieve those objectives.
For example, LinkedIn offers pay per click campaigns where you only cough up some cash when someone actually clicks on your ad. The same goes for impressions: you can optimize it so that you only pay for every 1000 impressions your ad receives.
By setting both a total and a daily budget, along with a start and end date, you can run some very cost-effective paid social advertising for IT consultants.
When you first start a social media profile, chances are good that you’ll have zero followers. There are several ways you can gain followers. You can get your employees to follow you, interact with people you think might be interested in your product or service, or start joining groups and building an active community.
Another great way to spread awareness about your profile/company/brand is to run a paid awareness campaign. Awareness campaigns are really helpful when you’re first starting out. They’re a type of paid social advertisement for IT consultants that allows you to increase your followers, likes, and engagement. These ads feature images, a small amount of copy, and a button to like your page.
Paid social advertising for IT consultants can offer you a lot of data on who your audience is. With ad analytics, you can see who interacted with your posts and, if you’re using A/B testing, which ad resonated the most. The analytics you receive from paid social advertising varies greatly depending on which platform you use. LinkedIn can offer you a decent amount of information while Twitter is rather sparse. But if you pay attention and test out several different ads you can learn a lot about your audience.
When someone engages with one of your advertisements, do a little digging into their social profile to try and find out why. What are their interests? Job title? Group memberships? Finding out who your message resonates with will help guide your paid social advertisements in the future and craft an engaging social profile.
Work with the Experts
Paid social advertising for IT consultants takes time and expertise. If you’re unfamiliar with social advertising platforms or how to set up an advertisement, it can be difficult to get started.