Pay to Win: Why Online Advertising is a Marketing Essential

Pay to Win on Laptop surrounded by money and analytics.Marketing is about using all the tools at your disposal to promote your company and bring in business, so why would you ignore one? This blog is for all the businesses that want to market themselves but are gun-shy of paying for online advertising. An important note is this isn’t a blog on if online advertising is effective, but why. We’re looking at comparing marketing plans done with or without advertising, and how with the low barrier to entry and the wide selection of mediums and targeting, it doesn’t make sense to ignore this potential influx of users to your website, restaurant, or other point of sale.

Understanding the Online Ecosystem

The most-used online services, from Google Search to Facebook, work for two reasons (and in this order): they are free, and they sell their data. These are two sides of the same coin – these businesses can grow and provide better and expanded services because their revenue doesn’t come directly from user fees or payments, but from advertisers who sell to their users. This becomes a golden rule for these businesses: everything they do need to influence how they can deliver results to advertisers, so they keep using their services. Because of this, online advertising is more powerful than ever.

Organic vs. Paid: An Unfair Comparison

We’ve covered the organic vs. paid argument before here at Vision, and we’ve always come to the same meme-like response: “Why Not Both?” As we’ve laid out in the headline, we’re looking at online advertising as a part of marketing. You can bring in users with great content like blogs. Online advertising isn’t going to change that, but it can enhance it. Have a great blog built to convert visitors to customers? You can advertise it on social media to expand its reach. Have a great products page with all the SEO done to the nines? Great, that means a better Google Ad rating.

Free is the Entry Level, Not the End Game

And it’s important to understand that this online ecosystem extends to your business as well: your online presence is vital and generally free entry: free business accounts for Facebook, Yelp, LinkedIn, and other platforms, listings, and online places. But it’s important to understand that those should only be the starting point on these platforms. They have all been wired for ads and premium features, and if you want to go from being successful to thriving on these platforms, you have to start running ads that are effective as (and enhance) your organic content.

Three Advertising Examples: Google, Facebook, LinkedIn

To understand how three different platforms can take good marketing (SEO, blogs, content writing, links, etc.) and make it better through advertising, let’s look at three platforms and an example of how they work:

  • Google Ads: Google Search is the search platform of choice, and your ranking on it will directly affect how often your website is visited. Google Ads (formerly AdWords) allows you to skip the queue and be listed at the top, especially useful for areas or keywords you’re not ranking high in through your organic content, allowing you to cover more ground.
  • Facebook Ads (and Instagram Ads): Facebook and Instagram are two platforms owned by the same company with their ad platform joined at the hip. If you’re looking to build one or both platforms or to accelerate your success on these platforms, ads can help you generate presence or take current fans to your website.
  • LinkedIn Ads and Premium Features: LinkedIn has always been a B2B platform, and as such, it plays by some different rules. However, for B2B companies, sales departments, and finding new hires, the ads and premium features (such as Sales Navigator) of LinkedIn can help companies of all sizes find their clients, hires, and competitors.

All of the above examples are powered by their users’ data. The real question is, which is right for you? Does Google Ads or Facebook Ads make more sense? How should you combine your marketing with your advertising? Which industries work best on which platforms?

You don’t have to find these answers yourself. Whether you’re just starting up your marketing or looking to enhance it, you can work with Vision Advertising to make it a reality. We’re a digital marketing agency focused on bringing the best of all tools, from organic content to online advertising, to bear on your needs and goals. We specialize in comprehensive internet marketing – from websites to social media and everything in-between. Contact us today to start the discussion and find out how to get the most out of your online advertising as part of your marketing plan.

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About the author : Alex Geyer

Alex wears many hats, and not just because he’s bald. A writer by background, Alex writes “content” for Vision – anything from social media statuses to blogs to website copy and beyond. In addition, as Senior Brand Strategist, he builds and maintains all search engine advertising for Vision, manages multiple client projects, and herds many meetings. In his free time, he starts and stops writing novels, reads a copious amount of fiction, plays video games, and an enthusiastic chef at home. He’s trying to become a better plant daddy.

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