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Are Sponsored Social Media Posts Worth the Money?

Using sponsored posts on social media platforms can allow your products to appear more often in consumers feeds which allows your business t build brand recognition whether your customers are in a cafe or at home.
1 Sep 2020

It comes as no surprise that we are all heavily reliant on our mobile phones. The second we wake up in the morning, we roll over just to check Instagram and our other favorite websites and social media. This has become second nature for us, and because we are constantly on social media we are often tempted with the latest trendy products, services, and destinations. With that in mind, you may see why sponsored social media is an effective digital marketing tactic in the lifestyle PR, beauty PR, and wellness PR playbook. Consumers always want to stay up to date with the latest trends which is why catching their attention first with a sponsored post can lead towards both greater brand recognition as well as sales. 

 

How Do Sponsored Social Media Posts Work?

But how do these sponsored social media posts work exactly? When working together with a public relations agency, sponsored posts can refer to two things. Sponsored ads, which are used to place your ads or posts first during peak times, or sponsored posts, which require collaboration with influencers whose followers share interests with your product’s target audience. Many smaller beauty brands, for example, have become rising stars and garnered wide consumer attention through collaborations with beauty bloggers, vloggers, and influencers across digital platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Youtube.

Have you ever gotten an ad so specific it feels like your phone is spying on you? The answer to this question may not be as sinister as you think. This is an example of behavior targeted ads, a type of sponsored ad.

For example, say you’ve been talking to friends and coworkers about fitness and how you want to get into shape. The next time you scroll on Instagram, targeted ads for fitness and athletic wear may begin to come up on your feed. Was your phone listening in on your conversation? It may be hard to believe, but the answer is fairly simple. 

These types of ads are created based on behavioral evidence collected about you online through website cookies as well as your recent search engine queries. If you were recently looking into apartments you may later be advertised home furnishings, or if you didn’t finish purchasing a product on a website, advertisements may follow you around on your frequent websites tempting you into the purchase. These types of ads are fairly sophisticated and often require guidance from a pr agency that focuses on your sector.

 

What Are Sponsored Posts?

Brands are attached to individuals. 

The same goes for influencers who constantly seek to capture the most picture-perfect moments. Their goal is to share their lifestyle with you and have you say, “Wow! I want to look like that”.  Take Kylie Jenner for example, she has access to 193 million Instagram users. Anything she posts has the potential to influence individuals all around the globe, much more than your local newspaper advert right? 

This is why companies are lining up to have their product or brand promoted by such individuals, as they have such a high impact on consumers on social media. If Kylie shared a product you never heard, even if one percent of her followers purchase what she has promoted it would be equivalent to almost two million sales. Any brand would be crazy to pass on such a golden opportunity.

 

Woman holds a red pinata in the shape of a social media "like" to represent influencers.

What Classifies an Influencer?

People with five thousand followers and more can be classified as an influencer. This allows them to have the chance at getting paid to post and share upcoming trends, products, services, or brands. If you can get paid to post an image, why not?  More and more individuals are becoming drawn to the idea of becoming influencers, as whilst they are selling a product, they are also building their reputation and gaining more followers.

 

Sponsored Targeted Ads

Social media has completely changed the playing field for PR agencies, and allowed firms who are based in areas like Sydney and Melbourne be able to work together with brands across the globe thanks to growing online reach. Most of us no longer look at the newspaper to see the latest news but quickly check Facebook to find top trends and headlines. This is why Facebook ads are so effective. 

The same goes for Instagram as ads are targeted at individuals who look up certain things like furniture, shoes, or makeup. Search data is used by Instagram to show ads to individuals based on their previous search history. Without paying for these ads, it would be a lot harder for businesses to promote their product and brand. It can be difficult to search for a brand or product you’ve never heard of. However, if it regularly shows up on Facebook or Instagram a consumer will already be familiar with your product and this brand recognition may move them towards a purchase.

 

Should I Invest in Sponsored Social Media Posts?

Ultimately, social media is marketing in the modern era and businesses should utilize every effort to reach a larger number of consumers. Long gone are the days of newspaper ads despite their past effectiveness. It is likely more beneficial for your business to invest in ads on Facebook and Instagram using targeted or behavioral ads considering the large demographic in users. PR agencies like Piccolo PR have connections to influencers who can share your posts, products, or services while gaining access to their followers. This not only helps brands sell their products but also helps the influencer build their following. Depending on your budget, a full-service PR firm in your sector can help devise a digital marketing strategy campaign for your brand that capitalizes on the influence of sponsored posts and sponsored social media ads.