One in three marketers who use social media for advertising say they aren’t satisfied with the results, according to a new report from Kenshoo Social, based on a survey of 105 social media advertisers who spend more than $100,000 per year on social ads. Out of this group 69 (66%) said they were satisfied with social media ad performance, versus 36 (34%) who felt it wasn’t delivering.
Overall, the social marketers surveyed were more likely to use branded pages than buy ads (73% vs. 56%). Slightly further down the list, 52% said they create branded accounts (corporate microblogs) and post to those accounts, and 51% said they pay to promote content on social networks. But the numbers switch among the social media marketers who said they are satisfied with social media results, who were more likely to pay to promote content, followed by creating branded apps and paying to promote trends.
Part of the problem for the unhappy third may be relatively imprecise targeting. According to the Kenshoo survey, 50% of all respondents said they use demographic targeting, followed by 43% who use geographic targeting -- but fewer marketers use more precise techniques like targeting their fans on social networks (38%), friends of fans on social networks (33%), or followers on microblogs (28%).
Among marketers who said they are happy with their results, the most common goal for those who used promoted content was to create awareness, followed by driving new social fans or followers. For those who used paid advertising, the most common goal was driving purchases, again followed by driving news fans or followers.
The bottom line, according to Kenshoo: “Many marketers still think of social media as a free channel. But the data is clear: Marketers who used paid social tactics -- be it paying for social advertising or paying to promote social content -- say that they’re more successful than those who don’t.”