5 Key Takeaways from the Paid Social Show at Brighton SEO 2019

Last week I had the pleasure of travelling down to the glorious Brighton for 2 days of jam-packed learning at Brighton SEO. Outside of the sunny weather and strolls on the beach the highlight was the newly introduced Paid Social Show – it certainly did not disappoint.

Paid Social Show

Having recently ventured into the world of paid social myself from a heavy background in your classic PPC channels (Google and Bing Ads) it was an inspiring talk that provoked a lot of ideas.

I have compiled my top 5 take outs from the show:

1 – When it comes to Instagram as a revenue driving channel the key is in planning says Sally Hawkesford (@sallyhawkesford)

With 53 minutes each day spent on Instagram, 1 billion active monthly users on stories and 130 million product tags each month there is a wealth of potential held up in the channel. More still organic visibility (whilst higher than other channels) sits at just 8% so it is crucial to maximise your paid activity to really get in front of your audience.

Sally Hawkesford

Sally gave us a 9-step process to delivering a paid campaign

  1. Know what your conversion point is
  2. Understand your CPA target or KPI – this may be per lead/ purchase
  3. Ensure you are delivering ads in the right place at the right time – when are your customers online and where are they looking? (feed or stories)
  4. Segment your audiences – don’t blanket target everyone with the same ad and message
  5. Be creative – in order to stand out your ad needs to deliver a unique and eye-capturing message (avoid mundane product shots on white backgrounds)
  6. Be dynamic – get personal with your messaging and ads
  7. Get technical – utilise the various features and add tags
  8. Think holistically – don’t just look at Instagram as a silo, how does it fit in with your other marketing channels?
  9. Talk the talk – it is all about attribution, don’t rely on a last click model

2 – How to take advantage of Instagram stories when the feed gets full – Tom Hillman of Transfer Wise (@wholenewworld)

Instagram stories has become a main player in the marketing strategy for Transfer Wise with 40% of their spend now being pushed into them, and with 500 million daily active users you can start to see why. But if that isn’t reason enough Tom takes us through why it pays to get in early and take advantage of the huge reach and potential stories offer.

Tim Hillman - Brighton

First and foremost they open up a door to reach new users as they are actively digesting content and this gives you a great competitive advantage. Secondly, in the world of paid social advertising, stories are still a relatively new feature and so if you can get in early you can make key learnings and at a relatively low cost.

Being a new means of advertising there are new features continuing to roll out, so keep an eye out for polls and sliders as these offer great potential to provide engagement and interact with users.

3 – Duane Brown (@duanebrown) shared with us his experience of using Pinterest over the last 18 months

As of September 2018, Pinterest had over 250 million users, 70% of which were women and 30% men. However, despite this big stat it can now be seen that over 50% of new signups to the platform are men, and so there is a constantly growing market.

Duane Brown - Brighton

Some top tips when creating your campaigns and ads:

  1. Use no more than a maximum of 4 promoted pins per ad group as flooding the ad group with ads can hinder performance
  2. Ensure you separate out your campaign types between search and browse so you can create more custom ads and also bid more efficiently
  3. When it comes to ad groups make sure you separate your keyword and interest-based targeting
  4. Always A/B test – define your objective and measure of success, run the tests for at least 4 weeks, determine the control vs treatment (what will remain/ change), test the opposite of what is currently working if you are an established brand and check what competitors are doing
  5. You can use keyword research from Google and Bing to start you off

The top categories identified for Pinterest are:

  • Retail
  • Auto
  • Food
  • Beauty and fashion
  • Home
  • Travel

4 – Why LinkedIn advertising is a B2B marketers silver bullet – A J Wilcox (@wilcoxaj)

A J Wilcox LinkedIn

If you’ve maxed out search advertising and Facebook and your lead quality has started to suffer then LinkedIn ads can be a great way to capture new customers. At scale LinkedIn has some of the best business targeting where you can target based on such things as job title, seniority and function, all of which have varying levels of cost and precision, a breakdown of some can be seen below:

  • Job titles – more expensive, highly targeted (precise), low volume
  • Function and seniority – low cost, high volume, very broad
  • Skills and seniority – mid cost, broad, high volume

LinkedIn also has some of the most up-to-date data, if you think about it, each time you get a new job or promotion one of the first places you update as a user is LinkedIn because you want to share this good news with your network. As marketers though this is something we can tap into as it means when you select your campaign targeting you will be more likely to capture the correct audience.

While LinkedIn advertising can be more expensive than other avenues it works great for several sectors – high value goods and services, white collar recruitment and higher education recruitment.

The many ad formats let you speak to your audience in several ways. From ‘low-risk’ text ads that are generally cheaper to run but deliver low engagement rates (0.03% engagement rate is considered good), to the main sponsored content where for most business 90%+ of advertising spend should be focused.

If you are to focus on sponsored in mail, then you really need to ensure you are delivering a personalised message, but overall, they have an average open rate of 50%, of which 3% of these users will click through.

The key with LinkedIn is all about knowing what to offer and expect from users, from low to high friction.

LinkedIn Friction funnel

One final LinkedIn top tip to take away was how you can use exclusions to prevent competitors from seeing your ads

5 – Targeting the full funnel with Quora ads – J D Prater (@jdprater)

My fifth and final top take out, but certainly not least is from the lesser used platform in the UK of Quora. Despite not being as well utilised as some of the others, this new kid on the block has over 300 million monthly users worldwide each month. The platform is also growing rapidly and between December 2015 and September 2018 220 million new users signed up.

People use Quora to get feedback, evaluate products and get answers and it is these traits that make it a highly engaged platform with users there to learn. It is also noted that Quora users spend 2x more time on the platform than LinkedIn.

The great news for b2b companies is that the platform still has 25% desktop usage which far exceeds other social channels. Quora typically sees 60% b2b and 40% b2c so there is huge potential for both markets.

With Quora you can reach and influence users at all stages of the funnel with numerous placement and ad types including:

Placements – question pages, in feed and topic pages

Ad types – image and text ads, promoted answers and question retargeting

Tip number one for Quora was to always split out desktop and mobile traffic in separate campaigns as intent tends to vary considerably between the two.

The platform covers areas from business to entertainment and the number of users and followers varies between them all and one of the best tips given was around the research phase and if you are trying to decide whether Quora is the right channel for your business. You can create a free ad account and set up your tracking pixel. Once set up this can be placed onto your website and can gather data in the background with a simple build of audience lists. From these audience lists you can then determine a). if you have an audience there and b). weekly traffic volume estimates

J D Prater - Brighton


To Conclude

Thanks for reading my round up of my trip to Brighton SEO. If you are feeling inspired by any of the social platforms and want any more information then reach out and we will be happy to discuss how we can help you.


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