Ross Shelleman is the CEO of Aisle Rocket, a full-service performance marketing and creative services agency.
Facebook’s overwhelming dominance in the social advertising space has been well established for years now. But as demographics and media behaviors shift and Facebook continues to come under scrutiny for its practices, brands and agencies are beginning to question the platform’s dominant position within their digital media budgets.
Without a doubt, Facebook continues to deliver the targeting at scale on which many marketers have come to rely. But as marketers look to future-proof their strategies for the years to come, they’re realizing that diversification beyond Facebook and onto other growing social platforms makes infinite sense. As they do so, it’s imperative that they recognize that moving beyond Facebook isn’t as simple as just migrating creative and ad spend to another destination.
Facebook has achieved its dominance within the marketplace for a reason: Advertising on the platform is effective, at scale, regardless of where in the funnel you’re targeting consumers. At the top of the funnel, brands can drive awareness and consideration. At the bottom of the funnel, they can drive sales and even facilitate the purchases themselves via their Facebook ads.
When it comes to advertising, other social platforms tend to be more specialized based on their unique value propositions to their users. Make no mistake: This specialization is a good thing. It fosters greater connections with users and enables brands to tie into those connections in a unique way. But it also means that brands need to be thoughtful when devising their approaches to each individual platform. What delivers on Facebook won’t necessarily deliver on TikTok — or YouTube, Pinterest or Snapchat, for that matter. Let’s take a look at the distinctions among these platforms and what they mean for advertisers and their messaging on each.
MORE FOR YOU
TikTok And YouTube: Top-Of-Funnel Superpowers
During the pandemic, consumers’ video viewing habits have diversified and skyrocketed — and TikTok and YouTube have been the beneficiaries. TikTok usage has been growing at a staggering rate since the onset of Covid-19, and advertisers are beginning to pay attention in a big way. Meanwhile, ad spending on YouTube surged impressively in the third quarter of 2020.
That said, TikTok and YouTube, for all their popularity, are not the same as Facebook. The nature of video content has always been and continues to be one in which an audience prefers to lean back and be entertained or educated. We see those behaviors translate to even short-form, social viewing environments, which viewers are reluctant to leave for an advertiser’s site. As such, these platforms play most heavily at the top of the advertising funnel, driving awareness and brand favorability rather than direct conversions. Advertisers need to acknowledge this as they set their creative and attribution strategies.
Pinterest: Unique Mid-Funnel Appeal
On the flip side, Pinterest and its boards continue to serve a unique role within the social media landscape — one of education, inspiration and influence. When people come to Pinterest, they’re coming for ideas, making the platform a particularly good place for product discovery and driving consideration.
The mid-funnel is too often neglected within brands’ media plans, but it serves as a vital connector between high-level awareness and driving conversion. As such, a smart Pinterest play can be the glue that ties a brand’s cross-channel media strategy together, provided brands play to its strengths.
The biggest issue for Pinterest as a platform is that it scales quite poorly for large advertisers. While we have seen it perform well for small to midsized accounts, it almost never performs at a scale that is particularly relevant for large enterprises.
Snapchat: Finding Its Place
Snapchat continues to wow the industry with its user and revenue growth figures, but the platform’s place within the marketing funnel is still being established. Without a doubt, the company is aiming to replicate Facebook’s full-funnel success, offering everything from single-image and story ads to AR lenses and filter ads. However, the evolving nature of the platform, not to mention its comparatively younger target demographic, means the proper role for brands on the platform is still being established. Snapchat is attractive for advertisers, no doubt, but it’s also an area where experimentation and continued optimization are warranted.
TikTok, YouTube, Pinterest and Snapchat can offer the same walled-garden benefits as Facebook when it comes to advertising: the ability to granularly target known users and closely monitor the effectiveness of various creative. However, the mindsets in which brands are reaching consumers on these platforms are vastly different from Facebook. As brands look to diversify their efforts beyond Facebook, they need to ensure they’re playing to the individual strengths of each platform.
Forbes Agency Council is an invitation-only community for executives in successful public relations, media strategy, creative and advertising agencies. Do I qualify?
Go to Source
Author: Ross Shelleman, Forbes Councils Member