When most business owners think of social media marketing, Facebook is the typical go-to platform. As of January 2022, statistics show that Facebook is the most active social media platform and has over 2.91 billion active monthly users. While advertising is often necessary, there are Facebook alternatives that make more sense to you as a mortgage officer. What are these social media alternatives, and how can they help boost your business?
- While Facebook may be the most active social media platform, offering a wide range of advertising options, it is not always the best option for your business.
- Even if you have found success with Facebook advertising, keeping “all your eggs in one basket” is not always a good idea when it comes to advertising, and taking advantage of multiple platforms can be beneficial.
- When you think of advertising platforms, you likely think of Facebook, Google Ads, Twitter, and LinkedIn, but the fact is there are many more additional advertising alternatives. Finding the best ones depends on your business and your target audience.
Why consider alternative platforms?
With the comprehensive reach Facebook offers and the most advanced audience targeting options in their advertising platform, why would you consider looking for alternative social media advertising options?
1. Facebook advertising costs continue to climb.
As the Facebook platform has grown, so has the demand for advertising space by businesses worldwide. In fact, 87.1% of businesses use Facebook as part of their digital marketing plan. This high demand for space has ultimately increased the cost of reaching your target audience. In addition, if you are new to Facebook advertising, it can be an expensive marketing option when you are still working to determine your specific target audience.
2. Facebook advertising bans are becoming more common.
Unfortunately, Facebook has a reputation for blocking and disabling advertising accounts on its platform despite following all its policies and rules. If you have all your social media marketing budget locked into Facebook alone, this random account suspension can eliminate your marketing completely.
3. Ability to leverage more platforms
With the help of Facebook’s advanced targeting options, you have identified your target audience and have a deeper understanding of the content they are looking for and what makes them click through a link. Taking advantage of this knowledge allows you to venture out to other social media platforms and boost your online visibility.
4. Not all clients use Facebook.
While Facebook does boast the most users of any social media platform, that doesn’t mean that your target audience is a daily Facebook user. Putting all your eggs in the Facebook basket may leave many potential leads out of your marketing plan. Adding additional platforms that target different users allows you to diversify your marketing plan and reach more potential leads.
5. Strict advertising policies
If you have experience creating ads on Facebook, you may already be aware of their strict advertising policies. With these policies, even a single word in your advertising copy may be enough to keep your ad from receiving approval. Some of the most common reasons that Facebook may choose to reject your ad include the following:
- Your ad is not meeting community standards.
- You are advertising something that is restricted or prohibited.
- There are problems with the images you are using, such as too much text or ad copy that alludes to the fact you are targeting a specific demographic.
- The landing page you are directing users to through your ad campaign must also meet Facebook’s ad policies.
Facebook advertisement alternatives
You have decided to expand your digital marketing strategy to add additional platforms, but how do you know which platforms best match your target audience and business needs?
Here we take a look at some of the top platforms that work well for the mortgage industry.
1. LinkedIn ads
The LinkedIn platform is a social media network designed for business professionals. This platform is a great way for mortgage officers to make referral connections with other professionals and real estate agents. As you network with other professionals, it can also help bring in new leads, given that most LinkedIn users are likely to fit with your target audience.
LinkedIn ad formats
LinkedIn ads offer four main advertising formats. These include:
- Text ads: These ads contain written copy and are displayed either at the top of the sidebar of a user’s feed or Linked Messenger.
- Sponsored content: This ad format displays as a regular part of a user’s LinkedIn feed and includes a “Promoted” label. Within this format, you can also opt for a carousel format that allows you to include a set of cards that the user can swipe through, giving you more advertising space to share your message.
- Video ads: Instead of creating an advertising spot with images and copy, video ads allow you the ability to better connect with potential users through dialogue.
- Sponsored InMail: This allows businesses to create sponsored direct messages to their audience at a per-message cost.
LinkedIn advertising costs depend on a number of different factors, including your target audience, your campaign objective, and how much you bid. In general, LinkedIn recommends setting a budget of $5,000 per month for advertising and spreading it out between different ad formats to find what works best for your business. LinkedIn requires a minimum bid of $2 for cost-per-click and cost-per-impression campaigns, though you can expect prices to average much higher for popular audiences.
- Ads are easy to create on the LinkedIn platform and go live immediately
- Multiple ad units are available
- LinkedIn focuses on messaging and interacting
- Ability to target users based on employer, job titles, education level, industry, professional certifications, and more
- Minimum daily advertising budget required
- No custom reporting or tracking
- Limited additional audience customization
- The advertising interface is missing some key features, such as a media library or the ability to duplicate ads.
2. Instagram adsWhile Instagram and Facebook are both owned by the same parent company, they do offer different demographics when it comes to advertising. When creating advertising through Facebook Ad Manager, you can also create a campaign for Instagram. Considering this, your available ad types are the same as those found on Facebook.
Pricing for Instagram ads depends on the bidding model you decide to use. On average, companies can pay anything from $0.20 to $2 for cost-per-click ads and $6.70 per 1000 impressions.
- Detailed audience targeting through the Facebook Ad Manager
- An eye-catching platform that does well with photo and video advertising options
- Limited audience with most users being between 18-34 years of age
- It takes time to manage and update ads
3. TikTok ads
According to Influencity’s Ultimate TikTok Study, TikTok’s user base has exploded to upwards of 1.4 billion active global users and is expected to hit 1.8 billion active users by the end of 2023. While originally a platform that targeted teens and young adults, the platform is widely diverse now, with almost 50% of users between the age of 25-44. TikTok offers five different brand solution advertising options on its platform that are highly engaging.
TikTok ads allow you to target your audience based on gender, location, age, common interests, and even more unique variables. TikTok offers five unique ad formats that include:
- In-feed Ads: These ads provide a video that plays in between users when they scroll through their “For You” page. These are short videos with a maximum of 60 seconds, though a 15-second duration is often the most common and effective.
- Brand Takeover: Brand takeover ads appear when a user first opens the TikTok app and presents a full-screen video to your target audience users.
- TopView: Similar to Brand Takeover ads, TopView ads allow you to target your specific audience, but rather than hitting them as soon as they log in, TopView ads display at the top of a user’s For You page.
- Branded Hashtag Challenge: An exclusive TikTok advertising format is the Branded Hashtag Challenge which takes advantage of popular hashtag trends to help boost your business brand.
- Branded Effects: Branded effects are an advertising format that allows businesses to create branded filters for their advertising content, prompting engagement with users.
TikTok advertising costs can vary based on your audience and advertising goals. However, you can set up a free TikTok Ads account and immediately create In-Feed ads that follow your set budget and schedule.
- Can increase and widen your audience base
- The audience can engage in multiple ways
- Easily trackable ad performance metrics
- Limited content formats
- Time-consuming ad creation
- Can be expensive for both video creation and advertising cost
4. Twitter ads
As of 2022, Twitter has over 330 million active users and growing. Twitter appeals to both business and personal use, similar to Facebook so you can promote various advertisements.
Ad Format Options
Promoted tweets, promoted accounts, and promoted trends allow for different advertising options.
Prices for Twitter advertising can be based on per-click actions (including likes, retweets, etc.), monthly costs, or costs based on the number of followers your account has.
- Able to target the audience that sees your ad
- Multiple advertisement options
- Analytics is lacking
- Because of Twitter’s rapid stream of information, getting lost in the shuffle of tweets is common
- Hard to track ROI
5. YouTube ads
Video content can be a powerful marketing option that delivers content in a much more personal format. With over 230 million active users, this platform allows you to reach a wide range of targets. However, to advertise on this platform, you will actually go through Google Ads. There are two types of ads available on YouTube. Ads played before a video can be long or short but can be skipped after five seconds. In-video ads play during a break in the video and must be watched in their entirety.
To advertise on this platform, you will actually go through Google Ads. There are two types of ads available on YouTube. Ads played before a video can be long or short but can be skipped after five seconds. In-video ads play during a break in the video and must be watched in their entirety.
YouTube advertising costs follow a cost-per-view format and can range anywhere between $0.10 to $0.30 cost per view. You are able to set a daily budget and your video will stop playing once that budget is met.
- Large audience with YouTube being the second largest online search engine next to Google
- Google AdWords allows for targeted advertising
- Unable to control which videos your ads appear in
- Skip feature allows users to skip your ad
6. Reddit ads
With over 480 million active users each month, Reddit is another social media platform that can be beneficial if you can find relevant subreddit topics to target. Reddit advertising can start for as little as $5 and is a great option for those just starting out in digital advertising and on a small budget. Reddit offers both promoted posts and display ads.
Ad formats available
Reddit offers several different ad formats to choose from. These include:
- Promoted posts: This is a CPM or CPC advertising option that appears similar to regular posts on Reddit, with the word “Promoted” above the title you create.
- Promoted videos: This ad option allows you to embed an auto-play video and offers both CPM and CPV bidding options.
- Community takeover: This allows you to be the first brand seen within the top communities of your target audience. This includes promoted posts, a top banner displayed on the page, and a smaller sticky banner. This lasts for a 24-hour time period.
- Front-page takeover: This is similar to the community takeover. However, you will instead be featured on the Reddit homepage for 24 hours.
Trending takeover: Similar to other takeover options, this one allows you to be the top brand shown in the “Trending Today” section for 24 hours.
The advertising costs on Reddit are similar to other PPC campaigns on other platforms. You can choose to structure campaigns based on impressions, video views, or an auction CPC. The minimum daily advertising budget is $5/day.
- Simple format and easy to create an account
- Ability to target your audience
- Reddit is very effective at driving traffic
- Extremely diverse audience offering a wide potential of advertising opportunities
- Quality ad tracking
- Overflowing with content and easy to get lost in the shuffle
- Fresh content is needed regularly
- It can require a lot of work to find the best-targeted areas
7. Quora Ads
Quora is a question-and-answer forum where users come to find insightful, data-driven questions and answers. Advertising on the forum allows you to not only boost lead generation and conversions but also build your credibility as a quality industry professional that knows what you are talking about. With over 300 million active monthly users, Quora allows you to get your business in front of your target audience without having to have a large advertising budget.
Ad formats available
Quora allows for three different advertising formats. These include:
- Text ad: This is a simple ad format that simply includes written text.
- Image ad: An image ad allows you to showcase your logo graphic as well as a chosen image to display beside your text content.
- Promote an answer ad: As Quora started as a question-and-answer site, this advertising format holds true to their initial goal. Promoting an answer advertising allows you to promote any of your answers to a targeted audience.
Quora offers two different types of bidding for ads: CPC bidding, where the cost is as low as $0.01 USD per click, and CPM bidding, which requires a minimum of $0.20 USD per 1000 impressions. You can start advertising on Quora for just $5/day.
- Increase exposure for your business.
- Gives you the ability to answer industry and brand questions
- Provide value through your advertising
- Video ads are not an option
- Metrics and customization are lacking
8. Microsoft advertising
Formerly known as Bing Ads, Microsoft Advertising offers the ability to target users of Bing, AOL, and Yahoo. While not quite as large an audience as Google, these platforms target those users loyal to their brands. In fact, the Microsoft Search Network receives over 120 million unique desktop searchers every day.
Ad formats available
Microsoft advertising offers a wide range of advertising formats that include:
- App install ads: This advertising option is a text-based ad that provides a link directly to a download of your company app.
- Dynamic search ads: Dynamic search ads display in targeted and relevant search engine results.
- Microsoft Audience ads: These ads are optimized for search advertisers and enable ad placement within articles and search results throughout various Microsoft platforms, including MSN, Outlook.com, and Microsoft Edge.
- Multimedia ads: Include large visual images as well as written content and are featured in the mainline and sidebar ad positions on the platforms.
- Responsive Search ads: This ad option allows you to provide up to 15 headlines and four descriptions that Microsoft Advertising will mix and match to provide optimal combinations that fit what users are searching for. Over time, it will provide you with the best combinations and will no longer display combinations that are ineffective, helping you create an advertising campaign that works best for you.
Pricing is based on a pay-per-click format with no minimum advertising budget.
- Increase lead generation
- Increase engagement with your target audience
- Boost online conversions
- Import campaigns directly from Google or Facebook
Smaller search pool than other platforms
9. Google ads
Previously known as Google Adwords, Google ads is probably the most used search engine platform when it comes to advertising. With over 3.5 billion searches per day, advertising on Google allows your ads to display to a large audience.
Ad formats available
Google ads offer a number of different ad formats for you to choose from based on your target audience, advertising budget, and the goals of your marketing campaign. The ad formats offered by Google include:
- Text ads
- Image ads
- Video ads
- Responsive ads
- Call-only ads
- App promotion ads
The average cost-per-click of Google ads is between $2 and $4 a click. However, costs can soar as high as $50 or more per click based on your target audience and ad format.
- The average CPC is lower on Google ads than on Facebook
- Ability to advertise through a number of different formats within the Google Display Network, including YouTube, Blogger, Gmail, and many more.
- Can be difficult to create for those not familiar with digital advertising
- In addition to your ads, Google is likely to display your competitor’s ads in the same locations
Social media advertising is not limited to Facebook.
Digital marketing is essential to reach your audience and generate new leads. By diversifying your digital marketing between social media platforms, you allow more exposure. Good Vibe Squad understands the importance of social media to boost your business.