Pay Up: Is There Still Room for Digital Paid Advertising?

By: Jake

If you’re a social media purist, you’re an expert at getting attention. You know how to be the 800-pound gorilla in the room, or, depending on your brand’s capacity for destruction, the bull in the china shop. So you might scoff at any old-fashioned notions of having to “pay” for digital advertising. We at Little Jack, however, recommend a comprehensive marketing strategy. Sometimes, you need just a little extra help to get your page to the top of that search results list, after which your brilliant content will speak for itself. But you might need that initial click.

Our policy is: depending on your market, don’t be afraid to spend a little money on online advertising. The key is to figure out exactly which kind of paid advertising you need. You’re putting your hard earned cash on the line, after all. Be a paid advertising champ, not a paid advertising chump!

Pay per Click

Pay per Click advertising means, as you might have ascertained, that you only pay the site displaying your advertisement when someone actually clicks on your ad. Strictly speaking, this is the more conservative paid advertising method, because it is entirely results based.

Companies that buy Pay per Click advertising are interested in trying to hook the customer now and get him to do something, whether that’s buying a product or reading a webpage.

Smaller companies often rely on Pay per Click advertising, for a couple of good reasons. First, because small companies are unknown to the customer, their ads don’t have very much lasting power – it’s now or never to get the customer to learn more. Secondly, Pay per Click advertising offers very specific feedback. You can see which of your ads were clicked the most and which were clicked the least, and refine your strategy from there. You optimization tweakers out there (read Lifehacker?) would love this.

Pay per Impression

With Pay per Impression advertising, you’re paying for every single time your ad is displayed on a webpage, even if nobody clicks on it. This method tends to cost significantly less, and impressions are usually measured by the thousand.

Why wouldn’t everyone just do Pay per Click, you ask? The reason is that the significantly lower cost of Pay per Impression enables businesses to flood the web with their ads. Companies that use Pay per Impression advertising are looking at the long term – even if no one clicks on the ads themselves, the visibility of the brand can be increased significantly for a lower price.

Another time to use Pay per Impression ads is when your brand gains some steam and you notice people are clicking on your ads with increased frequency. This would be a sign that people recognize the ads and would click on them anyway, and you can save yourself some money by paying only for the impressions.

So, now you can at least look like you know what’s going on when your marketing company is trying to ask you what kind of paid advertising you want. Nice work, you marketing genius, you. But all this wouldn’t be very useful if nobody sees your ads. So join us in two weeks, when we’ll discuss how a little keyword research can make your paid advertising go a long way!