Updated: Sep 16, 2019
Originally published on Horse Nation.
Marketing is the big picture. From your social media posts to ambassador programs, to your website, it defines the product's placement in the daily life of your audience. Your marketing establishes product relevancy, creates a need, or proposes a possible alternative to your audience. As your business grows, advertising allows you to target potential customers with specific messages, content, and information about your product.
Advertising is a small piece of the marketing puzzle. For your ads to be effective, they must be in alignment with the wants of the audience and your business goals.
To Buy Or Not To Buy?: It's All About Audience
Before we jump into how to reduce your ad spend, we need to talk about how your audience thinks, determine business goals, and tie them together.
Advertising is the piece that reasons with your audience about whether or not they need your product. It supports the purchase process and helps customers weigh the options of "to buy or not to buy." Supporting your ad with relevant content ensures your message remains relevant and keeps you connected to your customers.
So if you're only focusing on ad spend, you're missing out on a huge opportunity - to leverage your customer's natural impulses to justify a purchase by reading relevant content.
Purchasing is an emotional process. It’s why you think "I don't need this...but I want it." after seeing an Instagram ad that resonates with you. But before reaching for the credit card, you immediately begin digging into why you need it. THAT is the justification process 77% of customers partake in before buying and why supporting relevant content is so important.
Getting your ads in the right place to emotionally trigger the right person is just as important as determining your ad budget. Using that logic, serving showjumpers an amazing Instagram ad about mini-horse bell boots is not going to be effective - no matter how cute they are.
Showing your targeted audience an ad featuring someone going over jumps, however, makes an emotional connection that is also relevant to the product they are seeing. Emotionally, your audience sees an ad for your product, connects it with their life, and clicks to learn more. But remember the 77% - the brain still justifies the purchase by reading supporting documentation that your product is in fact, the right choice for them.
The Trust Fall: Support, Support, Support
Positioning your ad on social media or Google guarantees an audience. But unless you have content supporting your ad's intention, it won't be efficient. The audience may click, scroll, then search for more but without supporting content they will walk away. Every. Single. Time.
Niche-specific targeting is the clear path to lowering your costs and getting in front of the right people, but where the funnel leads them must make sense.
Here is where the big picture of "marketing" applies - the rest of your brand needs to be cohesive with what you're advertising to close the sale.
It's like a boot brand advertising a tennis shoe line. If someone wants to see the tennis shoe, the link should take them to the shoe landing page with more information, not the entire Boot Website. Your ad attracts the customer, but won't close the sale.
Sealing The Deal & Spending Less
Throwing money at an ad each month doesn't equal better results. Ads are dynamic, and how you choose to deliver them should reflect what your target audience responds to, whether its a social media ad, Google Ads, or video.
We already determined ads depend on user-specific content to become efficient and effective. Our advice is not to be afraid to get specific with your supporting content topics. Remember, it needs to make sense with your ad's intention and be congruent with the entire brand voice.
You know who your people are and understand what they need. Specificity leads them down a path that answers questions, reassures a thought process, or starts a conversation. This type of content is what encourages a relationship to grow between you and your buyers.
You know they're already interested in your products and gives you an easy-open into nurturing a brand new relationship.
In short, if your ad is unfocused, left to run on its own, and has no supporting content for the audience to read it wont give you the level of traction you’re looking for.
It’s why even the best product and best pictures don’t decrease ad spend. Step back, evaluate the potential buyer's path and give the 77% what they want - supporting content that your product is exactly what they’ve been searching for.