Social Media Marketing: How to Make a Killer Visual Ad

February 9, 2022
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Social media has changed how marketing is done. It provides a way for businesses and startups to get more leads, reach a bigger target audience (TA), and build a closer relationship with customers. The fact that there are over one billion active users every month on Instagram makes social media platforms an inviting marketing avenue for marketers. This just goes to show how social media affects marketing.

One of the biggest challenges that businesses face is stiff competition. The only way to get those leads and sales is if your ads stand out from what everyone else is putting out. For you to capture the attention of customers you have to create engaging stories with visuals. Let’s find out how you can create the best ads for your social media marketing strategy.

a yellow flower among purple flowers

1. Focus on Your Niche & Interesting Stuff

Social media provides a lot of content that can be overwhelming sometimes. So when creating an ad, you have to remember that your post has a time frame of about 5 seconds to capture users’ attention with your ads. You need to make sure that those first few seconds are very interesting and engaging.

People scroll through countless content on social media. We are sure some of the advertisements we’ve ignored were for great products or services but they simply did not look interesting enough. Before you can sell, you have to attract and hold a person’s attention. Users will only stop when something captures their attention.

The main focus here is to know their interests and pinpoints. You have to provide content according to their search requests and then engage your prospects. Offer something unique that customers can only get from you. To bump up your social media, you can also focus on relatable content in your niche.

Person reading a magazine leaning on a desk

2. Add a Strong CTA

The amount spent on social media marketing is expected to reach 200 billion US dollars by 2024. What does it mean? Social media are designed for promotional campaigns and it is the best place to encourage users to act. That is why you have an opportunity to place call-to-actions for your products.

When you add call-to-action (CTA), they have to be clear so that users know what the next step they have to take is. For your CTA to be strong, it should contain actionable words, for example:

  • Sign up
  • Download
  • Like 
  • Share
  • Free to try

However, this is not enough: you have to create a sense of urgency to get viewers to take the desired action. So saying something like “Sign up now” would be more effective for conversions.

Also adding an incentive encourages users to perform a certain action. For example, offering a free trial can be more effective than just asking users to sign up for a product.  Or, using webinar software to offer them “VIP Access” to a webinar that you’re running in the future.  Different marketing tools and techniques such as the A/B testing are quite effective for comparing CTAs and conversions statistics. That way you can choose one that will perform better. 

Important: Your CTA button is creating the leads towards your website, so first and foremost it is necessary that you make sure all links are valid and working. Before launching your social media campaign, make sure there aren’t any broken links that slipped through the cracks.

narrow path

3. Use the Right Format

The majority of people on social media use their mobile devices. You can keep this in mind when creating ads. Most video ads are designed in a square format. While this might work on desktops, it will not be convenient on mobile phones.

So make sure you adjust ads to make them mobile-friendly. For social platforms that are usually viewed from desktops, like LinkedIn, a square format works well. The point here is to always keep your audience’s devices in mind when you design a banner or promotional videos.

person holding a phone

4. Keep It Short & Simple

One of the reasons marketers struggle with ads on social media is the length. Most people have a short attention span. So if you create long videos, it will put users off. The light of your videos depends on the social media platform and the target audience. The optimal duration of promotional videos should be as follows according to different platforms statistics:

  • Facebook: 60 seconds
  • Instagram: 30 seconds
  • LinkedIn: 45 seconds
  • Twitter: 45 seconds
  • YouTube: 2 minutes

While this is the optimal duration of ads, it doesn’t have to be exact. Just remember that shorter ads are going to perform better than longer ones.

a Team of people

5. Know Your Niche TA

Advertising without a specific target audience in mind can be detrimental and very expensive. You may be able to capture the attention of many people but you won’t get leads. 

When creating ads, always keep your TA in mind. Make careful research so that you know what matters most to them. Questions to ask include:

  • Who is my target audience?
  • What is the demography (age, sex, etc.)?
  • What languages do they speak and what is their preferred communication method?
  • What challenges do they face?
  • How can I provide a solution?
  • How much are they willing to spend?
  • 6. Select the Right Social Media Platforms

When you have a clearer idea of who your target audience is, it will become easier to select the appropriate social media platform. With the right social media platform, you can launch your marketing campaign. Research each network carefully considering your objective and target audience.

concert audience

While Facebook is the obvious choice, other networks like Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Clubhouse, YouTube and TikTok are options that depend on your product or service. Before you create any campaign make sure you look for the main pain points of your target audience. Here are a few network tips to keep in mind when creating a social media campaign:

Facebook Ads:

  • Create your customer persona
  • Post ads regularly
  • Post more visual content than text
  • Pose relevant questions in ads
  • Avoid trying to sell on Facebook
  • Select the right audience

Instagram:

  • Create a business profile where users can contact you
  • Use Instagram tools
  • Post daily in the beginning
  • Do not over post ads
  • Interact with users
  • Use popular hashtags
  • Share customer reviews
  • Share content on Instagram stories
  • ​​Search for post ideas

Note: Sometimes, it could be really hard to come up with the ideas on what to post for Instagram. Yup, you can try to work out when you kickstart your social media marketing social campaign. But daily promotional ideas on what to post on social networks could be a tough task.

man writing

Great advice here is to automate some of the daily processes. You can use customizable captions, creative tools, and video makers. You can use ready templates for Instagram post ideas in your niche, find inspiration by using up-to-date apps. Remember, you don’t have to sweat the hard stuff again. Use automation, AI, and AR solutions to help you out here.

Twitter:

  • Use a schedule to post ads regularly
  • Invest in paid marketing
  • Retarget customers
  • Use advanced tools to build a target audience
  • Take advantage of Twitter analytics to measure results

LinkedIn:

  • Create employee and company profiles
  • Do not limit your connections
  • Use business and personal profiles to advertise
  • Connect with businesses or people in your industry
  • Post relevant information
  • Use sponsored updates to find key influencers

Final Thoughts

Social media can play a crucial role in your marketing strategy. So take advantage of the fact that people spend so much time on social media.

You can create ads that are interesting and engaging. If you are making promo videos, you need to make sure the materials are short as it helps to maximize engagements. Besides this, you have to pay attention to the video format as it has to be compatible with the devices that users utilize. Adding an actionable CTA will be important when developing a strategy for your campaign. CTAs that show urgency and offer customers incentives are more effective.

The last but the most important thing when creating social media ads is to make your advertisement audience and niche-oriented. Knowing your audience (what they want, their attention span) and researching your niche and competitors will help you create the best social media ads in the long-term.

About the author

Nina Petrov is a content marketing specialist, passionate about graphic design, content marketing, and the new generation of green and social businesses. She starts the day scrolling her digest on new digital trends while sipping a cup of coffee with milk and sugar. Her white little bunny tends to reply to your emails when she is on vacation.

Nina petrov

Nina Petrov

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