These platforms take different approaches to digital advertising. Where should your focus be?
Both Google and Facebook offer tremendous digital advertising opportunities for businesses of all sizes. There are multiple factors that go into determining which one your business should focus on.
Ask yourself the following questions about your business before deciding where to make your online advertising investment.
While it’s advisable to try both Google and Facebook’s ad platforms and monitor the results, your answers to these questions will help you determine where to start.
1. Do I have an especially visual product or service?
Google is a text-based platform. Its pay-per-click ad service offers companies a chance to highlight their products and services in brief descriptions and headlines only. That can work for things like software and financial services companies. It can also be a nice complement for more visual businesses like restaurants, travel, and sports companies.
But businesses with a trove of attention-grabbing photos and videos will find more opportunities to showcase their images on Facebook. Check out the variety of visual advertising formats Facebook offers:
- Single image
- Carousel with up to 10 images
- Auto-playing slideshow
- Image/video combos
- Photos and descriptions from your product catalog
All of these options come with headline and text description fields. Check out our post on getting started with Facebook advertising for more about format options.
2. Who do I want to see my ad?
Both Google and Facebook ad platforms offer targeting capabilities, but they differ in their approach.
Google is engaged with people who are searching particular locations for particular services. That makes it an ideal option for businesses with a physical location. So if you want to get your business header and description in front of people searching the web for, “ski rentals in Vermont,” for example, Google gives you that opportunity.
Google also lets you target searchers based on their geographic location, the type of device they are using, and the keywords they are using.
Facebook’s targeting capabilities are based more on user interests and demographics, gleaned from data Facebook collects on the things people like and click on, not only while using Facebook, but also while browsing the greater internet.
You can really hone in on a specific target audience by customizing your audience’s age, where they live, what their interests are, and even what their purchasing history is on other websites.
You can also build more general audiences and measure which strategy is the most cost-effective.
3. What stage of the buyer’s journey do I want to target?
Because Google reaches prospective customers when they are actively searching for something, Google ads are a great tool to engage with prospects in the consideration stage of their buyer’s journey.
These prospects have identified a need and are more prepared to make a purchase than a Facebook user who sees your ad as they scroll through their news feed.
Facebook ads, on the other hand, are ideal for raising awareness about your brand. Whether your goal is to increase your social media following or drive traffic to your website, a Facebook ad puts your business in front of the right prospects - whether they have discovered they have a need for your product or not.
Facebook ads target prospects that are at the awareness stage of the buyer’s journey.
Facebook or Google advertising? Both can work for most businesses, and it’s beneficial to experiment with both. These three questions will help you determine which of the two platforms should garner more of your digital advertising resources.
Thanks for reading,
Breezy Hill Marketing is a Vermont web design company specializing in marketing strategy, social media marketing, and building beautiful, optimized, and mobile responsive websites. We work with clients in Vermont and throughout the United States.