SM ads:  Buying your way to community?

Saw this interesting article today as I trolled for the THP "PR story of the day" for our Facebook page.

The story on Forbes.com point to the general increase of ad buys on social media platforms and specifically the increase in ad spending by major brands on Facebook.

So the question is can you buy your way to "community?"

It's tempting.

The ability to REALLY target your audience given all of Facebook's targeting tools (age, education, keywords, etc.) is very effective.  One of our clients told us last week he's seen a sizable jump in the engagement and entries to his online contests by adding Facebook ads to the mix.

For big and small businesses alike you also don't have to spend an arm and a leg to make an impact.  For our clients who are launching a custom FB landing page or a contest we routinely recommend a small FB buy to "grease the viral wheels" and help gain initial traction.

In a recent blog post, Scott Meldrum talks about the importance of gaining fans, and big brands have recognized the importance of FB ads in that mix.  But I urge you to read the rest of his post.  As he (and we) point out, it is one thing to get the fans….it is another one to engage and keep them.

So while a "jam the gym" approach may work in getting initial numbers, the real job starts in keeping all those people engaged and to get them to be your evangelists.

Creating community is more than just dumping all your marketing dollars into social media platform advertising.

As with any marketing platform, advertising will get folks to sample, it's the product (in this case, the content) that gets them to buy your product again and again.

I'm sure some of you will disagree, I'd love to hear from you.

Jon Newman

In 2002 Jon cofounded The Hodges Partnership and has helped to grow it into one of the country’s largest public relations firms (based on O’Dwyer’s annual rankings). Jon has taught communications as an adjunct professor at VCU, speaks regularly at conferences and meetings and blogs and tweets about public relations and marketing issues.

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