Instagram reveals three new shopping features, YouTube starts testing “ad pods”, and the decision between organic and paid content on social media.
Instagram reveals three new shopping features
Three new shopping features are supposed to open up social media shopping even further for businesses and consumers. The first new feature includes the shopping collection, which allows users to save products of interest from a Story or post. The shopping collection can then be accessed at any time and enables users to return to previously saved items and posts, supposedly increasing the likelihood of a sale. Secondly, Instagram has introduced shopping via video, which means that the videos in a users feed cab now contain a shopping icon, where the user can see the featured products. And lastly, the newly added shop tab for business profiles lets users browse products from the business that have been previously been posted in shoppable posts. The shop button will appear on the business profile as soon as a shoppable post has been created in the feed and allows users to browse the product range of the business.
YouTube is testing “ad pods”
YouTube will be launching ad pods on desktop this year and will continue to roll-out on mobile and TV screens. Having two skippable pre-roll or mid-roll adverts, the aim of the ad pods is to create a more TV like advertising experience, by introducing fewer ad break interruptions and thereby lower rates of content abandonment and higher rates of ad viewing. Ad pods will not be delivered to every video, but will appear depending on the length of the video. YouTube has been testing the new advertising model and summarises that users, especially those who watch longer content, are more likely to stick with the content when ad pods were used. Users also experienced up to 40 percent fewer interruptions if two ads were delivered in a single break rather than throughout the video.
Which social media strategy to choose: Organic or Paid?
Just as the question whether to invest in SEO or PPC, social media marketing displays its own dilemma of creating organic content or investing in paid advertising.
The short answer is, that there is no ultimate solution for every business, as each case has to be looked at individually. Paid social media marketing will certainly get you in front of the right customer in a cost effective way with extremely targeted adverts and immediate results. However, depending on the time of the year (e.g. Black Friday and Christmas), advertising costs can increase in order for social networks to show your ads.
By adapting your social media content to your aim you can make the most of your paid advertising budget. Looking for users to visit your website? Create a traffic ad. Looking to get potential customer data? Use a lead form ad. Looking to increase your brand awareness? Create a reach ad and so on.
Organic content on the other hand should not be ignored as, if it is done right, it can be well worth the investment. If you are looking to build trust and develop a bond with your potential customer, presenting your business in line with your brand identity is key. You can also use this content to create an open dialogue, collaborate with consumers and create a line of communication, all leading to an improved brand loyalty for existing customers and inspiration for new customers.
To summarise, the best strategy is probably a mixture of both, creating engaging and useful organic content as well as creating paid adverts and who said you can’t use the organic content for your adverts, too?