A guide to Social Media for your Digital Marketing Apprenticeship

A guide to Social Media for your Digital Marketing Apprenticeship

Have you recently started or are looking to start a Digital Marketing Apprenticeship? Well Social media is a huge part of digital marketing, so if you want to learn the basics of social media keep reading…

What is Social media marketing?

Social media marketing is an aspect of digital marketing where a business promotes their product or services on social media platforms

social media marketing platforms

Examples of Social media platforms include:

  • Meta
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • TikTok
  • Snapchat
  • LinkedIn
  • Pinterest
  • and more

Organic vs Paid Social Media Marketing

There are 2 main types of social media marketing: Organic and Paid. Organic social is when a business posts content without spending money to reach more people, earning loyalty and growing their business organically. Paid social is when a business pays for campaigns on social platforms to reach more people and target specific demographics. Paid social requires setting up the campaign with specific goals in mind, such as: brand awareness, reach or traffic.

We’re going to be focusing on paid social…

What makes up a Paid Social campaign?

Audience:

One of the key parts of a paid social campaign is deciding the audience. You can target: age, location, device, gender, interests, and past user activity. For example: if you received a brief for the newest iPhone, you may want to target technology lovers, in the UK, aged 18-34.

Placements:

You also need to decide which ad placements you want to do for each platform. For example skippable vs non skippable ads, in feed, collection ads, carousel ads, stories etc.

Influencers:

Recently, influencers have become a huge part of paid social media marketing. With platforms such as TikTok and Instagram producing more and more influencers, brands can pay them to promote their product. You can do this in 2 main ways: Pay the influencer to create content advertising your product, which you can then post from the client’s account with paid reach, or the influencer can post the content from their account, and you can then boost the reach from the client’s account. The use of influencers is great for targeting specific groups of people with specific interests, and younger audiences who use TikTok, Instagram and Snapchat more than other platforms that have less influencers.

Tests:

Your client may also want you to perform an A/B test within your campaign. This is when you split the budget and run (usually 2) identical campaigns, changing 1 variable. This could be: campaign objective, placements, targeting, creative etc.

Measuring performance:

You also need to decide on a KPI (key performance indicator) for your campaign so you can measure success. These could be: increased revenue, increased traffic to website, brand perception, purchase intent and many more. To measure your KPI, you’ll use a metric such as revenue, link clicks, CTR, impressions etc. These help you conclude whether your campaign was successful, and how you can improve the campaign next time.

Ready for your Digital Marketing Apprenticeship?

Now that you’ve learnt the basics of Social Media Marketing, you are ready to start your digital marketing apprenticeship. This will include learning all areas of digital marketing such as search, display and programmatic, as well as social. Doing a digital marketing apprenticeship will help you gain experience, knowledge, and a qualification, to help you kick start your digital marketing career!

Learn more about digital marketing apprenticeships:

Click here to learn more about digital apprenticeships and the different qualifications you can earn!

So what can you do to learn more about paid social before your apprenticeship?

Most of the social media platforms offer training on how to use their ads manager platforms, such as Twitter flight school, which will help you get a head start with your paid social career. If you want to improve your general digital marketing knowledge, why not complete the Google Analytics exam, as employers will love to see this on your CV.

Where to find us:

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to us on any of our social medias!

Follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter!

Paid Social Platforms. Who, when, why?

In the modern world, it feels like there are constantly new social media platforms that you need to be on to keep up with news, friends and cute pictures of animals! It can be daunting to keep up as a consumer, but even more so as a digital marketing apprentice. It is your job to take your clients goals for a marketing campaign and decide which paid social platforms you should run activity on to meet these goals. In this Blog I will cover the four main social platforms in 2022, their strengths, weaknesses and when you should use them!

Social media phone screen

Facebook

Facebook remains the largest social media platform with 1.93 Million Daily active users in 2021 According to Statista. It has been at the forefront of social advertising since its release meaning that it is one of the most developed platforms in terms of features and capability.

Strengths:

  • Largest user base which allows for widest scope and audience segmentation allowing you to target exactly who you want to
  • In depth testing capability allowing you to understand the best methods to meet your business goals
  • Plethora of Ad types and placements which you can read about here.

Weaknesses:

  • Aging user base
  • No ‘100%’ ad format allowing you to reach all DAU in one day like Snapchat and TikTok offer

When to use:

Facebook should almost always be in your Paid social marketing strategy due to its sheer size and targeting capability. It often drives the strongest results of any platform and is extremely versatile

Instagram

Instagram is owned by Facebook. This means that it shares the same ads manager and therefore most of the same features. It has 500 Million DAU making it smaller than FB but with a younger demographic. Instagram puts more of an emphasis on images and videos than Facebook.

Strengths:

  • 59% of users between 18 and 29.
  • Feature rich in terms of audiences and placements
  • Ability for more creative marketing due to its focus on media over text

Weaknesses:

  • Again, a lack of a ‘100%’ placement

When to use:

Instagram is similar to FB in that it should be used in almost all paid social strategies due to it having a range of targeting and content options. However, if your creative is more visual, IG is always a platform to consider.

Snapchat

Snapchat used to be the shiny, new social platform to advertise on (more on this later!) but it has now had time to solidify its offering and become a staple of most paid social strategies. As the platform has matured, so has its offering of products. One thing to note is the simplicity and easy of use of the platform when creating ads. This is due to the fact that Snapchat poached engineers that worked on Facebooks Ads manager during its infancy, taking away some of the unnecessary complexity and keeping it feature rich. Snapchat boasted 319 Million DAU in 2021.

Strengths:

  • Wide range of placements before, between and after content
  • Young user base
  • Ease of use

Weaknesses:

  • Testing is less in depth than FB and is mostly handled by the platform itself

When to use:

If you are looking to target the younger generations with your ads, Snapchat should be part of your strategy. Similarly to IG, SC also lends itself very well to video content.

TikTok

TikTok is the new platform on the block. With massive growth especially within Gen-Z where 59% of Gen-Z people are on the platform, TikTok is now incredibly important when targeting younger users. It has had such an impactful rise that Facebook blamed its first QoQ reduction in DAU since its launch on TikTok.

Strengths:

  • Massive growth of audience base especially in younger generations
  • Most users watch with sound on, lending itself to video content
  • Option for a ‘top-view’ which is shown to every user that opens the app on that day, guaranteeing performance

Weaknesses:

  • Questions around security may make your client hesitant to use it

When to use:

TikTok only works well with assets made for TikTok due to its reliance on video content. If you have this available and are trying to reach a younger demographic, TikTok is the platform for you and your client’s goals!

That’s a round-up of the main social platforms and wen you should use them. Have we missed any? Let us know by getting in contact here:

Why you should consider using Facebook Advertising

Mobile phone with the Facebook log in screen and scrabble letters spelling out social media

You may have heard some less than positive news about Facebook in the past 9 months. They have had some challenging media to contend with as well as technical challenges due to a falling out with Apple. This has led to tracking issues after the iOS14.5 update which has resulted in advertisers experiencing increased costs and lower performance. It is not all bad news though. Their rebranding to Meta has generally been seen as a future-focussed move and they have stated that revenue grew 56% in Q2 last year. So before we dive into why you should use Facebook to advertise, lets first ask, what actually is Facebook advertising?

  1. What is Facebook advertising?
  2. How does Facebook advertising work?
  3. Benefits of Facebook advertising
  4. Tips for creating Facebook advertising campaigns
  5. Helpful tools when creating Facebook ads
  6. Conclusion

What is Facebook advertising?

If you use Facebook, then you have undoubtedly seen ads as you have scrolled through your feed. Businesses and brands create these in a digital tool provided by Facebook called Ads Manager which sits within Business Manager suite of tools [link to business manager]. It operates in a similar way to Google Ads [link to google ads blog], in case you have used this tool before. Within Business Manager you can control who you want to target, how much you want to spend and how you want your ads to look.

How does Facebook advertising work?

It works in a very similar way to Google ads. You create campaigns, then ad sets and then, in the ad sets, you create your ads. The ads are shown to the audience who you have chosen in your ad set. So instead of targeting keywords, as you might do in a Google ads search campaign, you are targeting a defined group of people.

These can be customers who have taken an action on your site but perhaps didn’t purchase. Facebook does this by using a tracking code called Facebook Pixel which you embed on your site. It enables the tracking of many things including which products your customers have viewed and whether they have purchased from you. They can also be brand new customers who have never interacted with you before.

After Facebook has determined who is in each audience and that this person is someone you want to show your ad to, Facebook then uses an algorithm to bid for an advertising slot in the auction process. Your ad creative ‘score’ and your budget dictate if your ad wins the auction and is shown. However, unlike Google, it uses CPM (cost per thousand impressions) instead of CPC (cost per click) as the bidding factor. This means that you pay for every view of your ad. However, if you have a high CTR (click through rate) you won’t be charged more like Google.

For comparison, if you typically pay £0.75 per click with a £5 budget and a 1% CTR, your ad in Google would generate 667 impressions and 7 clicks. In Facebook you might have a £5 CPM so your £5 budget is shown to 1000 people and with the same CTR of 1% you would have 10 clicks.

Benefits of Facebook Advertising

A huge benefit is being able to target anyone who fits your demographic requirements according to the audiences that you have created. With Google you can only target people who have shown an interest by already searching for related keywords. Using Facebook you are able to target people who might not have heard of your brand or are not aware that your type of product exists. This helps you find new customers as well as build brand and category awareness.

As an example, let’s say your target demographic is females aged 18-54 in the UK and the product you sell is potentially relevant to all of them. This will be an audience of several million people, however, on Google the combined search terms which are relevant to your business for this demographic might only be 100,000 a month.

Tips for creating Facebook advertising campaigns

There are a few helpful and cost saving things you should know before creating Facebook campaigns. Here is a list of a few of the most important ones:

Use a funnel approach when setting up your campaign and ad sets. The idea is to group your close audience bucket and filter out less relevant people, keeping your CPAs (cost per acquisition) low.

Don’t forget to setup correct UTM’s, so you can monitor the ad performance in your Google analytics account. You can then compare it against your overall performance to see how much impact the ads have had.

Use dynamic ad types and ad sets for users who have engaged with your site content. This is a great remarketing tool which shows the user products they have seen but not purchased as well as other products they may be interested in.

Scrabble letters spelling out the words digital marketing on a wooden background

Helpful tools when creating Facebook ads

If you have limited graphic design experience or resources, Canva is a great option which offers free and paid versions. Alternatively you can create ads in Adobe Photoshop or any other graphic editing software. These tools allow you to adjust image sizes to fit Facebooks requirements and add additional assets to help them stand out.

There are various types of ads which all have different requirements, you can find out more here. It’s great to test different ad types to see which work well with your audiences.

The dynamic ad sets are a bit different as they are generated ‘dynamically’ based on your website content which the user has either seen or interacted with previously. The setup for these ads just requires some copy and formatting regarding how the dynamic content will be displayed in the ad. For example, the headline can be the product title and you can also show pricing and any discounts.

Conclusion

Advertising on Facebook in 2022 is still a great option although it requires planning, optimising and utilising all of the tools at your disposal. Following the tips above will help to give you a head start in setting up your campaigns and avoid making mistakes that have been made before.

If you would like to learn more about Facebook and digital advertising, then I would recommend looking at an in-depth apprenticeship focussed on how to advertise online. Read our blog Digital Marketer Apprenticeship.

Engagement – 5 Ways to Succeed on Social Media

Illustration of three people using social media, commenting and liking posts.

Having a strong social media engagement with your audience is more important now than ever before especially with the younger generation. This means having meaningful connections with your customers both new and existing.

But in a world where almost everyone is online how do you bring the right attention to your brand? Read on to find out how interacting with your customers on social media can benefit your business.

What is social media engagement?

Social media engagement is the measurement of responses you receive. Although a big number of followers and likes is good, the emphasis should be on the quality of engagement. Are your followers having a positive experience? Are they engaging with your content and sharing it with others?

The most common metrics are the number of likes and comments but there are a number of metrics you can use:

  • Shares and retweets
  • comments
  • likes
  • saves
  • mentions
  • use of branded hashtags
  • click-throughs 

It is important to track a variety of metrics as different platforms will have different engagement features. Having more than one KPI for social media engagement can also help you pinpoint what areas you can improve and what content may need some changes from the way users are interacting with it.

Now you know what it is, here are the 5 easy ways to increase your engagement rate:

Set your engagement goals

Before hitting post you need to decide what it is you want to achieve. The motivations for engagement will differ based on your business goals. If the goal is to increase traffic on your website the focus could be to increase the number of click throughs to the webpage. If your business wanted to collect feedback on a new product the strategy could be a poll asking your followers for their preferences.

Get to know your audience

To communicate effectively with your target audience you need to understand their wants, needs, and interests. Find out what platforms they use the most and if certain topics interest them more. Have a look at the trending hashtags and what your followers are talking about. This knowledge can help you to create content relevant and valuable to your audience.

Experiment with content

There are so many different types of content you can share on social media. Try different formats and make sure to analyse the results to find what works best for you. When creating the content take into account the context and your audience. For instance, if you are a cosmetics brand perhaps you could post a makeup tutorial and add a link to your website for viewers to purchase the products used. Not only would this increase your engagement rate via the click-throughs or ‘swipe ups’ but also could lead to an increase in conversion rate.

Here are some creative formats to try:

  • Live video
  • Instagram reels
  • Polls & Surveys
  • Q & A
  • Memes
  • Infographics
  • Customer reviews
  • TikTok 

A brand that has a great social media presence and engagement is Nike. Their Instagram features a wide variety of content from short interviews with athletes, encouraging their followers to comment or tag their friends and to click the link in their bio for more information or to purchase a new collection. Check out their Instagram page for some inspiration.

Respond

To have strong customer relationships you need to get involved in the conversation. Be reactive to direct messages, mentions, and comments promptly and keep the conversations going.

It’s a good idea to have a community guideline on responses to ensure they are in line with your brand’s tone of voice and values. This will help when facing negative comments and having pre-composed responses for common queries can save you some time.

Review the engagement data regularly

Social media platforms have analytic tools for you to measure the success of your social media marketing strategies and campaigns. Take full advantage of these tools and regularly audit the analytics.

Compare the data to past months and see if there were any trends or patterns. Maybe there was an event that had an impact on your brand’s engagement?

Three colleagues analysing a data report

Have a look at the data and ask yourself these questions:

  • Which post got the most engagement?
  • Was there any platforms that had very low rates?
  • Which platform drove the most traffic to the site?

Conclusion

Having social media as one of your channels for digital marketing will greatly benefit your business. To ensure you are getting the most out of the platforms engage with your customers by interacting with them, sharing valuable content they will be interested in and remember to set clear goals and track the results.

5 Easy Ways to Generate Website Traffic

The more people who reach your website, the more potential customers you have. Everyday 250,000+ websites are launched worldwide according to Siteef. As this space becomes ever more cluttered, it has never been important to ensure your message gets through. If you don’t generate website traffic, you won’t have any potential customers.

An image of someone working on a laptop, using a data tool to track the growth of web traffic

1. Social Media

There are multiple different social media and all have a different user base. These are the main ones:

  • TikTok: You have the ability to reach millions of people for free. 60% of all TikTok users are aged between 16-24 according to a social media research firm Wallaroom. A good example of a company who have used TikTok well is the Irish airline Ryanair, who have amassed 1.3 million followers. From every post you make you could recieve thousand of additional hits to your website. The more you post, the more views you get, giving you more chance to increase profits.
  • Instagram: Similar to TikTok, Instagram’s main demographic is 18-29 year olds who make up 59% of all users according to The London School of Economics. Instagram gives you more freedom than TikTok because with Instagram you can post picture, videos, stories and more but TikTok can only be a video. A good example of a company who have used Instagram well is Starbucks who have 18 million followers. The American Coffee giant have transformed themselves from just another Cafe chain to a status symbol.
  • Twitter: You can reach thousand of people with just one post. Unlike TikTok and Instagram you can actually put a website link in the description of a post which means it is easier for people to click on to your website. A good example of a brand who do well on Twitter is H&M the high street fashion retailer with 8.4 million followers. According to the same London School of Economics report 37% of Twitter users are aged 18-29.

2. Reviews

Reviews help sell product but what most people don’t know is reviews also generate website traffic. It does this in a few different ways:

  • Referrals: People who have bought something are likely to tell their friends about it if they like it. According to a study conducted by Big Commerce only 25% of people trust adverts, but 92% of people believe the recommendation of a friend or family member and 75% of people believe the reviews of previous customers.
  • Search Ranking: If you have reviews on your website you will rank higher on google. If your previous customers leave reviews, the Google algorithm can improve its ranking of your website.

“Google itself has made it clear that reviews can influence local search rankings — and are factored into its algorithms for determining where businesses appear on Search Engine Result Pages”

Review Tracker

3. Paid Advertising

Paid advertising is a brilliant tool, but only when it is planned out well and constantly reviewed. Failure to manage paid advertising well can turn it into an ineffective money pit. The best methods for paid advertising are:

  • Paid Search Marketing: This is the most popular type of paid advertising, according to a study done by PPC Protect, 45% of small businesses used Paid Search Marketing in 2018. This method is good because you only pay for clicks onto you website after someone uses your search term. The Paid Search Marketing price is dependant on the competition for search terms, if you pick to many mainstream terms, you will find your paying a lot more per hit then they are worth to you. If this happens you should pick some more niche keywords and under used ones. You can research keywords using Google Trends, Semrush and many other programs.
  • Display Advertising: This is where you have a pop up advert on different websites, whos viewerbase you want to target. An example of a website you would see Display advertising on is the Daily Mail website. According to research firm Sumo only 3% of people click on these kind of adverts, but it is a good way to build brand awareness.
  • Social Media Advertising: This is where a post on social media is promoted to reach far more people than it ever would have. You can generally pick the locations, ages and interests of people you want your campaign to reach. The idea is to generate website traffic from only people interested in your sector. The average cost of social media advertising per 10,000 impressions are (according to Bark a marketing firm):
Social MediaCost Per 10,000 Impressions
Facebook£54.20
Instagram£59.60
YouTube£73.00
Twitter£48.70
Tik Tok£75.60

4. Email Marketing

Email marketing is a fantastic, cost effective way to drive traffic to your website, because you are emailing people who have already registered an interest in your company. The best time to do this is when you have a new product or your have a special offer, to entice these people in.

5. SEO

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) in simple terms is optimising content on your website in order to rank higher on search engines. Things you can do to improve your SEO include:

  • Use Alt tags on images
  • Update content regularly
  • Keep Meta description to no more than 70 characters
  • Start regularly blogging
  • Fix or remove broken links
  • Use Keywords
  • Benchmark your site against your competitors using Google Page Speed

Paid Social: Top Tips for life outside of Facebook

Paid Social in 2021

As a Digital Marketing apprentice, it can be easy to fall into safe routines. Instead of recycling Facebook campaigns, read on to revolutionise your Paid Social today!

iOS updates sparks uncertainty for Facebook

Apple have recently announced their plans to introduce a new privacy setting to iPhones that will allow all users to consent to whether or not they permit being data farmed by ads, apps & advertisers – with the majority of people expected to take up the offer.

Though this may be a small victory to those who use the estimated 1.5 billion active devices, this is indeed a dent in the life-source of the digital age and spells great uncertainty to many ‘big data’ & ‘big tech’ companies alike (except of course, for Apple)

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR FACEBOOK?

In the immediate future according to Facebook themselves “you can expect to see changes in our business and advertising tools, campaign set up, targeting, delivery, measurement, and reporting.”

Facebook are also expecting heavy issues with the current build of the Ads Manager, including “fluctuating performance for paid activity” & “custom audiences sizes being likely change”.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR YOU?

With this in mind, we can see that there is uncertainty for platform in the immediate future. There are, however, plenty of great alternatives when planning for paid social in you can use to really stand out in your Digital Marketing role!

Snapchat for Business

Snapchat, whilst popular, remains to be overlooked as one of go-to Paid Social avenues.

As of 2021 the platform has accrued a user-base of over 265 million! On top of a huge user base, the engagement levels are off the charts: people use the application 25+ times per day, with 60%+ creating content daily.

From a creative perspective Snapchat offers a diverse selection of ways to best engage with your audience.

Snap Ads – this format is the most recognisable on the platform, these are in-feed videos as you scroll through stories. They always play with sound on and are 100% viewable in-frame.

Snap Commercials – ‘commercials’ are very similar to ‘ads’, difference being that these are non-skippable (but at a premium rate).

Despite this being a very brief introduction to the platform, Snapchat is proven to have an intuitive and quality advertising platform, through which you can control your activity using their Ads Manager. If your company/brand is looking to target a younger audience I’d definitely recommend researching the platform further.

TikTok for Business

As we all likely noticed, 2020 was the year for TikTok.

The second coming of Gen Z’s beloved Vine has taken the eyes of many by storm, with the actual downloads now totalling at 2 billion (the 7th most downloaded app of the 21st Century). The current viewership is now estimated to be around the 850 million mark.

Similarly to most modern Paid Social platforms, TikTok offers their own range of nuanced ways to engage with your audience

Influencer Activity – TikTok is famous for its influencer heavy content (both with and without spend behind it) and it’s no secret that influencer marketing, alongside TikTok, is on the up-and-up

Paid engagement (available via IO, self-service and programmatically) – TikTok naturally offer their own spin on in-feed video, allowing you to place your video creatives in the feeds on your custom audience via their own brand new Ads Manager.

As viable as TikTok has become there have been plenty of concerns regarding brand safety over the last year due to the enormous amount of UGC. If your employers or brand aren’t sold on the idea, you can be sure that TikTok themselves however have made huge progress in this area, now offering the below:

  • Human review of machine-identified harmful content with re-review based on level of views (viewership thresholds undisclosed).
  • Introduced Family Safety mode in the UK (allows parents to enable Restricted Mode & set screen time). 
  • User interest & Demographic targeting.
  • Premium Targeting Mode (no brand suitability).
  • User controls: message/content/comments/violation reporting and a penalty system for policy violations (dissuading offensive behaviour).
  • Partnerships with NGOs and notable academics focused on user safety.

Plenty more where that came from

The two alternatives listed here are quick tours of, in my opinion, the best two alternatives right now.

However if you wish to look for more to enhance your Paid Social campaigns within your apprenticeship then read on here.

INTERESTED IN DIGITAL MARKETING?
ApprenticeTips offer the run-down on Level 3 Digital Marketing Apprenticeships –
https://www.apprenticetips.com/level-3-digital-marketing-apprenticeship-2/

Social Media Advertisements – The Do’s and Don’ts

Like a great number of us, I spend a -slightly embarrassingly – large amount of my free time on social media. You name it, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, TikTok, I’ve tried it all, however, its only been in the past 2 years during my time in media that I grew to understand how advertising and marketing tied in with this. If you’re like me and you like to get ahead, this article is for you as I cover the essential best practices when creating paid social media advertisements.


The Do’s

Keep it native

It’s no secret to digital marketers that the general consumer view towards advertisements isn’t favorable. The reason being because they are often felt as annoying and intrusive as the interrupt the content the user is looking at. To avoid causing negative feelings towards your ad, ensure the creative content and the format is personalised to the platform. This will avoid your creative ‘feeling’ like an advert and is likely to improve dwell time.

Make it Share-able

Match.com 2020 ‘Made in Hell’ Advert


Social media thrives on the ability to share content far and wide. The best way of generating word-of-mouth marketing is to have a creative that people want to share with their friends and family. Comedy / humour is the most common and brand safe way of doing this with users having previously responded well to a light heart-ed approach.

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Monitor Performance Frequently

With paid social media, campaign performance can change rapidly based on consumer behaviour. It’s crucial to monitor the performance of your ads so that you can make changes and optimisations. Most platforms have algorithms to help you with this but it never hurts to keep a human eye on this and make any further developments.

Keep Branding Upfront

No matter the type or format, all adverts on social media are somewhat skippable. For this reasons it’s important to keep your branding clear and upfront. In video formats, have this in the first 1-2 seconds (before you risk losing concentration) and for static creatives ensure branding is obvious and clear.

Target a specific audience

Targeting, Darts Pexel.com


One of the great benefits with social media advertisements is the vast targeting abilities that digital marketing offers. Even if your aim is towards a broad audience, narrow this down by interests / age / behaviours / demographics where you can. This will help the overall consumer intent of the audience you serve to and help reduce wasted impressions / spend thus improving ROI in the long term.

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The Don’ts

Avoid using politics to ‘promote’ your product

Social media is becoming the fastest way of spreading global movements and news. Brands are often pressured to speak up on these and take a stand which is often a great idea to align yourself with your consumers. On doing this, however, its crucial your response be as brand safe as possible. The best way of avoiding this steer clear of associating your product or encouraging users to buy from you.

This isn’t a movie

Short and simple. Social media is a fast moving reel with the average scroll rate currently at 1.7 seconds per piece of content. For this reason, the best creatives have one clear message that delivered upfront and in the first moments of the ad.

For more digital marketing advice and information for apprentices, click here.

#Don’t #Hashtag #Everything

Hashtags are a wonderful way of connecting your post with other relevant ones and highlighting key words in your caption. That being said, overusing Hashtags can result in looking desperate for reach or unprofessional. Like many things, these are best used in moderation.

Don’t obsess over the numbers


Its important to monitor performance and the larger social platforms have created specific tools for you to track users engagement and interaction with your ad. Despite this remember to consider all the valuable qualitative you gain from user responses and comments. This can be a great way of understanding consumer attitudes and building brand relations.

Seven steps to using Facebook Ads: A digital marketing apprentice’s guide

With over 2.3 billion active accounts and 1.56 billion people logging on every single day – Facebook is the social media giant providing a huge opportunity for companies using online advertising. Considering its enormous reach, Facebook Ads is a channel that should be considered as a digital marketing apprentice. But where is the best place to start?

Facebook Ads – Digital Marketing Apprenticeship
Facebook Ads – include it in your marketing strategy!
Image credit: freestocks.org from Pexels

1. Create a Facebook Business Page

During your digital marketing apprenticeship, setting up a Facebook Business Page for yours – or your client’s company – is the first step. To do so, you need to click the ‘Pages’ header in the left-side navigation of your Facebook profile page and select the type of page you want to create, whether it be a local business, brand or product. There are many benefits to creating a Facebook Business Page, including:

  • Promoting your business’s services to a wider audience – connecting with both current and prospective customers online
  • Accessing page insights to see how well your posts are performing
  • Identifying user demographics such as age, interests and location
  • Providing employees access to edit your page and create ads and boosted posts
  • Showcasing your companies’ expertise and credibility through patient reviews

2. Choose your digital marketing objective

When creating a Facebook ad, the first question it will ask you is ‘What is your objective?’ Answers could be brand awareness, website sales, phone call enquiries or a brochure download. Once you have chosen your objective, it is important it should remain consistent throughout each individual campaign you create, for example, if your main objective is to drive clicks to your website, all of your ads within this campaign must have this goal.

3. Decide where to run your ad

There are four placements for Facebook ads, including:

  • Single image – create up to six adverts with one image, ideal for promoting something specific, for example a new treatment or product launch
  • Single video – similar to a single image but with a video, ideal for showcasing a treatment taking place
  • Carousel – an advert with two or more scrollable images or videos, best for promoting a range of services
  • Slideshow – a looping video advert consisting of up to ten images, another good option to highlight different services or products your business offers

4. Targeting

With billions of users on Facebook every day, targeting is key. Targeting allows you to be super specific about who you want your ad to reach. There are numerous ways to target audiences as a digital marketing apprentice, including:

  • Custom audiences – allows you to target existing customers or leads, for example those already on your mailing list, or a ‘lookalike’ audience of people who resemble your current customers)
  • Gender 
  • Location – for example city, county, country
  • Interests – for example health and beauty, sports, fashion or travelling
  • Behaviours – allows you to target by past behaviour such as shopping behaviour, the phone they use, items they are looking to buy
  • Life events – for example you may wish to target someone who is about to go on holiday, or is buying Christmas presents
  • Connections – target people who already like your page, or who have connections that do

5. Budget

Facebook advertising is possible for budgets of pretty much any size – whether that be £200 a month or £2000 a month. The more you spend, the more people you reach, but even for as little as £1 a day, you can make an impact. You can set a daily budget, or a lifetime budget where the ads automatically stop once the money is spent.

6. Writing ad copy

The best copy to use in your ad is copy that matches the overall message you are trying to convey. For example, if you are encouraging people to buy a product, include video footage of a customer using the product and how it is relevant and valuable to them. Use clear, specific text with a call to action such as ‘Buy now’, ‘Learn more’ or ‘Get in touch’, which will help achieve direct results.

7. Optimisation

When your ad is running, you can track its performance and edit the campaign if necessary. If one version of the ad is working better, or if you feel you are spending too much money, you can make tweaks and adjustments as needed. The main considerations when it comes to optimisation include:

  • Cost-per-click this gives you a monetary value of how much each click (engagement) costs; typically, the smaller the number, the cheaper the click
  • Cost-per-conversion similar to the cost-per-click but depending on what you have defined as a conversion – e.g. a brochure download, a phone call etc
  • Impression – the greater the number, the more people who have seen your ads
  • Unique link clicks – this shows the number of clicks from unique visitors. This metric counts people, not actions

You can also gather further information such as audience demographics, time of day, how long content was viewed for among much more, which can provide valuable insights.

As a digital marketing apprentice, including Facebook advertising in your future marketing strategies will help raise awareness, increase engagement, attract new and returning customers and boost sales – providing a hugely valuable part of your marketing plan.

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Could digital marketing be the apprenticeship for you?
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Facebook Marketing Essentials: For Digital Marketing Apprentices

Facebook Marketing can be a powerful tool

Is Facebook the best platform for social media marketing? Is Facebook the right social media marketing platform for my employer? Should I setup a Facebook page for my business or focus elsewhere? If you are just starting your digital marketing apprenticeship, are new to social media marketing or haven’t used Facebook before, these sorts of questions are completely understandable.

Facebook is Complex

There is a lot to Facebook these days, and there are a lot of social media platforms out there too, so it can be difficult to know where to start.

There are lots of social media platforms for digital marketing apprentices to choose from.
When you’re starting your digital marketing apprenticeship it can be tricky deciding what social media platform to start marketing on.

But don’t worry, ApprenticeTips.com are here to help: in this article I give you an overview of Facebook as a social media marketing platform and explain why Facebook might be the perfect platform for your business or why you may want to focus your social media activity elsewhere during your digital marketing apprenticeship.

Decide Your Target Audience

Sound good? I hope so! But before we go any further I’d highly recommend taking some time to make sure you can answer one very important question:

Who exactly am I trying to reach with my social media marketing?

Or to put it another way: who are my target audience?

Before you can decide if Facebook is right for your business you need to be able to answer this question in detail.

As a starting point you need to know the following about your target audience:

  1. Age: how old are your target audience?
  2. Location: where are they located? Are they near me or are they all across the UK?
  3. Interests: what do my target audience care about or enjoy doing?

Answered those questions? Good! That’s enough prep work. Let’s get on to the good stuff: read on to find out more about Facebook and its pros and cons

Facebook: Overview

Facebook may not be the newest, flashiest social media platform on the block anymore, but it is still one of the largest in the UK, with 37 million users, and is the second most used social media platform in the UK.

It’s hard to summarise Facebook in a single sentence, as there’s so much to the platform these days, but in a nutshell the platform allows users to connect with family and friends, businesses, public figures and groups of likeminded individuals in public, and in private.

The central hub for all of this activity is the Facebook newsfeed. Essentially this a carefully curated stream of content from people you follow, brands you are interested in and advertises who have paid to appear on your feed.

Facebook: the pros

  • You can post a variety of content:

The platform allows you to post lots of different types of content – long articles, short articles, pictures, links, video, polls, live streams, stories etc. – and there’s lots of tools within Facebook to help you create this content.

Having lots of flexibility around what you can post and free tools to help you make posts is very helpful when you are starting out with social media marketing as it be can be challenge to keep finding and creating content week in, week out.

  • Ad targeting:

Facebook’s ad targeting options are “unparalleled” according to one marketing expert. Digital marketers are able to target ads at Facebook users based on their location, age, gender, interests and much more.

For example, a clothes shop that sells clothes to women in their 20’s/30’s could target an ad about their new summer range to women aged 24-34 in a five mile radius of the store, who are interested in their brand’s Facebook page or their key competitor’s Facebook page.

For many businesses the ability to target ads at a specific group of people, at scale and relatively cheaply is an enticing prospect.

I’d highly recommend discussing this feature with your employer if you’re weighing up if Facebook is suitable for their business.

Facebook is very good at targeting customers
Facebook gives you lots of targeting options when you run ads. The platform can be a very effective at targeting your key customers.

Instagram is another popular social media platform that is also owned by Facebook. If you create a Facebook page you’ll also have the opportunity to target ads at Instagram users, even if you don’t have an Instagram account yourself.

There is also quite a bit of cross over between the two platforms. Image posts that do perform well on Facebook will probably perform well on Instagram too, for example.

If you do decide to setup an Instagram account for your business, it is also easy to link your Facebook and Instagram pages and to set up time saving processes like posting to Facebook and Instagram at the same time.

Facebook: the cons

  • Young people prefer other platforms:

US teenagers prefer other platforms over Facebook, and it is probably reasonable to assume something similar is happening in the UK too.

The Facebook user demographic data we have for the UK includes Instagram and Facebook Messenger users too, but this data shows that there are more people on these platform ages 25-34, 35-44 and 45-54 than 18-24 year olds.

  • Better platforms available to reach other businesses

LinkedIn has around 28 million users in the UK. This is much less than Facebook’s 37 million. However, when you consider that LinkedIn is a more specialist social media platform that is primarily a place to discuss business matters, this is still a large audience.

If your target audience is primarily other businesses or business professionals you may be better off focussing your social media marketing efforts on LinkedIn.

  • Privacy/data concerns:

Over recent years Facebook has been the subject of various data breaches, and scandals. The most high profile of which was the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

Summing Up: is Facebook right for my business?

There’s far more to the Facebook than this one article can possibly convey, obviously, but hopefully this article has given you a clearer of idea of Facebook as a platform and its good and bad points.

Questions?

If you’ve got questions about Facebook or other digital marketing apprenticeship topics don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on Twitter or on LinkedIn.

And press here to find out more about what else you cover in a digital marketing apprenticeship.