What's in this article?
Most (if not all) businesses rely on social media channels as a primary medium to reach their audience. Until recently, social media managers believed in the power of organic reach, but it turns out it’s not the case anymore because paid social media channels are getting more traction.
The slow death of organic reach
A recent report showed that the average organic reach for Facebook pages is somewhere around 2%, even for pages that have millions of likes. This clearly shows the fact that paid social media will be vital for businesses that still want to reach their audience on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn. Facebook is the social media network that experienced the fastest reach decrease, but other channels are going through the same thing, even though it’s occurring at a much slower pace. Here are two reasons why this is happening:
- Social media channels want to make businesses more interested in paid social media.
- Social media is oversaturated with posts, and so the reach goes down and the price businesses need to pay will be higher.
The effectiveness of using paid social media channels
Let’s assume that your business has 10,000 likes on Facebook. If we follow the logic from the report I linked earlier, an average post that you publish on your page will be seen (and not clicked on!) by approximately 200 people (give or take). The click-through rate for your post would be even lower than the number of people who have seen the post, so we can say that your post will receive somewhere around ten clicks. It’s not good, especially if you’re relying on attracting traffic to your website through your social media profiles and organic reach.
A study by the Content Marketing Institute showed the effectiveness of paid social media channels from the perspective of B2C marketers. More than 70% of those who responded to the survey said that they’ve used promoted posts for their social media channels (Facebook boosted posts, promoted tweets or pins). A large majority (61%) declared that promoted posts were indeed effective. The survey also revealed something very interesting. Facebook and YouTube are the most effective platforms for B2C marketers, with Twitter and Instagram taking the next places.
For B2B marketers, the situation looks very different. 93% of B2B marketers use paid social media while approximately 50% of them use promoted or sponsored posts. A little bit less than 50% of the people who use promoted and sponsored posts would rate them 4 and 5, on a scale of 1 to 5, where 5 is very effective. B2B marketers tend to rely more on PPC or paid search advertising as a tactic while the most effective social media channels that work for them are LinkedIn and Twitter, followed by YouTube, SlideShare and Facebook. You can find these stats in the same study I linked for B2C marketers.
Social media users
Social media users say that they are influenced by the messages that come from the people they follow on social media and those who are also influencers for them. A survey done by Izea revealed that sponsored posts are in second place as an effective traditional marketing approach, with only 0.5 points behind content marketing. The survey also showed the fact that 52% of the companies that participated in it have a separate budget that is specifically allocated for sponsored posts.
If it were to compare organic social media engagement to paid social media, we could clearly say that the latter will provide businesses with many more advantages, such as more exposure, better targeting, the possibility to scale the efforts and assess ROI. The harsh reality is that organic reach will decrease more and more as time goes by, which means many more businesses will be somewhat forced to use paid social media channels. What you need to keep in mind is the fact that you need to adapt to your audience, because its profile is going to help you decide what social media channels you should use. And if social media users say that they are influenced by social media stars, then you need to find a strategy that will include that. If you’re convinced that paid social media is exactly what your business needs right now, then feel free to introduce us to your business. We will review your website for free and also make an initial SEO recommendation.