When clients come to our media buyers with their campaigns, we try to understand their goals and how to best use the creatives they’re ready to run. A campaign intended for driving sales will lead to a shopping campaign, while wanting more app installs will result in an app download campaign.

So how do our buyers know where to place your ads to boost sales or what type of ad units suit your needs? Well, there’s a method for that. And the good news is we will share it with you to help you and your team succeed.

We've reached out to our top experts in paid social to ask their secrets to choose the best ad units to boost your sales. With experience managing 15,000 campaigns for the world's leading agencies and brands, they know what it takes to drive conversions.

Related: How much does social media advertising cost?


Strategic planning to boost sales through paid social

To drive sales with social media ads, our team may ask for more data about a client's target audience or even request some tweaks to the creative that’s been offered. The correct ad unit to use is always determined primarily by the goals of the campaign.

We know our goal is to generate sales. So how can we choose the best ad unit to boost sales?

Start with getting to know your consumer deeply. Study who they are, where they live, where they hang out online and what their interests are to create the best strategic plan possible.

Buyer personas are a great resource to help you strategize your campaign. You can use personas to guide your creative and develop a relevant targeting plan.

This is important because a business traveler doesn't want to see an ad about the latest athletic apparel just because she has the same level of income as an athlete. Knowing how to target the correct audience is essential do reach your goal.

Describe your audience in detail and cater ads to each persona to reach the most valuable segment to your business and increase your click-through rate.

Considering your objective is to use social media to boost sales, also make sure you choose a clear call-to-action (CTA) so that the customer knows what to they need to do to, or what you want them to do, to enjoy your offer.

Before clicking on the CTA, though, customers want to learn about a product or service. And that is where the tricky part is. What this means is that to drive sales for your product on social media you must have a strategy to generate awareness about your product or service before focusing only on sales.

Related article Data report: YouTube advertising benchmarks When it comes to YouTube advertising how do your campaigns compare? Find out in this benchmark report comparing metrics across 25 industries. Read more.


Choosing an ad unit to boost sales on social media

The majority of consumers don’t convert based off seeing only one ad. They might see your TrueView in-stream video ad before watching their favorite YouTube channel one day, a banner ad on a website on a different day, and ultimately only make a purchase after seeing a carousel ad of your products on their Facebook feed.

So here's an important lesson: Your strategy to increase sales through social media must consider the different steps of the sales funnel for optimal results.

sales-funnel

Each ad unit plays a different role in converting a customer. While your buyer personas will tell you the information you need to know to choose the best social media platforms for your campaign, a strategy that takes customers through the different steps of the sales funnel is what will provide you some guidance to selecting the appropriate ad units to generate conversion at the end.

Our buyers have found that pay-per-click (PPC) and search ads are often contributed with the last click, whereas video is a better option to the early stages of your sales plan when you want to drive awareness.

According to our experts, videos tend to be the best option to drive awareness and spark interest in your company, but they don't incentivize the consumer into making a purchase. Instead, it gets them thinking about your product or brand so that the next time they see an ad, they are familiarized with your brand, which leads them to consider your offer.

Images, PPC and search take the lead in the final step of the consumer journey because they’re most often seen attributed with the last click. This is due to their being more product focused which drives the best conversion rates.

More dynamic options such as carousel ads can be an incredible resource to display your products or services and drive sales. Combining images with a link that will redirect customers to a landing page optimized for conversion is the ultimate step to use social media to increase sales.

Related article 6 steps to creating a plan for social media advertising Check out how to create a strategic plan to reach your goals with paid social Read more.


Choosing the right strategy to drive sales through paid social

Above all, it’s important to remember you’re selling a product or service. Behind any marketing initiatives, there is a strategy and it is no different when it comes to social media advertising.

Get your customers to know you through ad units focused on awareness and then get straight to the point with units that drive conversion.

Remember consumers scroll fast through social media feeds. Don't take the risk of losing them with the wrong approach.

Taylor Schaller

Taylor Schaller

Taylor is the Social Media and Content Marketing Intern at Strike Social. A graduate from The University of Alabama, she is now an MBA candidate at Loyola University Chicago.