So…

You’re a small to medium sized business and you’ve been successful by maximizing your network, close friends, and pushing the boundaries of pure luck since you’ve opened your doors.

Congratulations!!

Now you’re faced with the challenge of growing more and are not sure how. People tell you about Facebook and Google, but each story conflicts the other.

After all, you’re a business owner, not a marketing guru.

Everyone is telling you about their success in different marketing arenas and how it’ll be the “best thing you ever do for your company!” but you’re not so sure and it’s expensive if you mess up.

They’re not wrong! But they’re not necessarily right either.

Each marketing platform comes with very specific benefits and pitfalls. More than knowing which is the right one, you should know what to expect with each and then learn where your target customer spends the majority of their time.

Hook the Attention of Strangers

Hopefully by now you have an idea of your ideal customer avatar, and since this is your first attempt at real grassroots marketing, you’re going to need to attract that particular persona. Some of the online ad platforms you can bid for space on today include the following:

  • Facebook
  • Google
  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • Snapchat
  • Tik-Tok
  • Blogs
  • Independent websites
  • Yahoo!
  • News channels
  • And many, many more

The two largest, and the focus of this article, are Facebook and Google.

We will discuss why you would choose one over the other (if you’re forced to choose just one) and the benefits of using each platform.

Keep in mind that many people, if not most people, do use both Facebook Ads and Google Ads at the same time. For those of you who are just beginning, however, there is likely not enough budget, time, or focus to start there. Isolating to just one initially has proven to offer much more information and faster ROI you can then use to kick off the second.

Ad Platforms

Google Ads offers a few different ways and places to display ads. Google Search network ads and Google Display network ads are the most popular. Due to the relevancy and response we receive, we tend to lean heaviest on the Google Search network, and allow the Google Display network to follow behind. 

On either, however, Google is much more keyword and text-based than Facebook. Facebook ads are targeted according to demographics and interests of the user and they include both images or videos and text all in the same ad.

When Google offers a Display ad, it’s only an image. When Google offers a Search ad, it’s only text. When Google offers a Shopping network ad (yet another platform for Google’s advertising), it is in the exact format of their Shopping platform.

Facebook, however, offers many different styles of ads all fall into the some space on the potential customer’s Facebook timeline. Google Ads are generally cost per click (CPC) while Facebook ads are cost per thousand impressions (CPM).

The Decision

1. What is your user’s mindset?

The single most relevant point to consider when trying to decide what platform to begin advertising on is the mindset behind users when using each advertising medium. When people search on Google, they are looking for products and information. When people are browsing through Facebook, they are engaging in a relaxing and mindless activity without a specific intent. Facebook offers events and memories and friends that trigger deep emotional responses. Google users tend to be much closer to the point of transaction than Facebook users do. Therefore, Google users can be “sold to” while Facebook users have to be “guided” to the point of transaction.

2. Do your customers know something like this exists?

Some products are not searchable since people don’t know they want it until the product is shown to them. For example, say you are tired of hauling a hose out to your pool three times per week to fill it up, but you are unsure of anything on the market to fix the problem so you just assume it’s part of owning a pool.

If you come inside and log into Facebook and an ad for a Swimming Pool Autofill appears, then you will immediately want to learn more about it and then potentially purchase it. You never would have searched on Google since you had assumed that dragging the hose was just part of filling the pool.

There are thousands of other use cases just like this one, which prove how Facebook is the perfect place for spreading your message.

3. What relationship do you want after they view your ad?

Facebook makes it extremely easy to maintain a perpetual relationship with the user through sharing, liking, commenting, and other forms of social interaction Facebook has and Google does not. With Google, you end up taking the user outside the Google network and thus, typically, the focus has been transactional.

Talk With Us

We’d love to hear what you think, and what is happening in your business. Please comment below, or email us at info@outsideroi.co to chat.

Or, schedule a free 15 minute phone call to discuss anything you’d like in Digital Marketing. Simply fill out the form on our inquiries page here with your available times and we’ll reply within 24 hours to get you booked!