There are many different platforms now that companies can use to advertise. One of the major ones at the moment is through social media, Facebook to be exact. Facebook has a global reach of over 600 million users, making it really accessible for companies to interact with their customers and vice versa. There are, as with many forms of advertising, both benefits and drawbacks to using Facebook as an outlet.
One of the benefits to using Facebook to advertise is how specific you can get with who you reach out to. You as a company are able to target specific people who have liked certain pages or joined groups. This allows you to target particular audience who are more likely to be interested in what you are selling. Also if your ad is seen by someone and they then decide to share or like it, the ad will then the reach all of the people they are connected to that may not have originally been in your targeted audience. Free advertising!
Another benefit to advertising on Facebook is that it links to a number of other social media sites. Instagram, for instance, is owned by Facebook so the two platforms are easily able to be connected broadening your reach even further. Each different type of social media platform will have a slightly different customer base that you can gear your advertising to. One can be primarily image (Instagram), text (twitter), or a combination of the two (Facebook). It is important to advertise across multiple platforms to gain the best possible reach for your company.
One of the drawbacks to advertising on social media is that it is constantly changing. This means that you also will have to be constantly changing and updating your ad whether through content, style, or image. Facebook is a relatively cheap way to advertise but you will be putting in a lot of time and strategy to keep it as up to date as possible. Alternatively though this will allow you to test out different ways of advertising your product to see what your audiences responds to the most.
Another drawback to advertising through Facebook is when there is negative feedback. Because this platform is very public, one negative comment can reach a lot of people. Having the negative comments seen could potentially turn away customers, hurting your reputation. Companies will have to take the time to monitor and respond to any customer feedback that will be addressed on the site. Having the ability to instantly connect and get feedback can also be an asset though. Comments allow the company to speak directly to customers and gain insight about the products or services. The negatives can then be turned into positives by changing the approach of the company which may make it even more relatable to a larger audience.
Hansson, L., Wrangmo, A. and Solberg Søilen, K., 2013. Optimal ways for companies to use Facebook as a marketing channel. Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, 11(2), pp.112-126.
Ramsaran-Fowdar, R.R. and Fowdar, S., 2013. The implications of Facebook marketing for organizations. Contemporary Management Research, 9(1), p.73.
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