This post is about Organic Promotion and Paid promotions. People say that the best things in life are free. This saying never seemed right to us. Of course, something is really available for free – love, sunshine, fireflies, and many other wonderful things. However, you can also buy a lot of good for money: for example, nunchucks, a bicycle or a disk with the cartoon “Kung Fu Panda 3”.
Given this, it is sometimes difficult to unambiguously determine which things are better – paid or free. At least when it comes to social media marketing. Between the adherents of organic and paid promotion, disputes are still ongoing. Both options have both strengths and weaknesses.
On this page, we will try to understand in detail the features of each method and study their main advantages and disadvantages.
ORGANIC AND PAID PROMOTION ON SOCIAL NETWORKS
You can identify the main difference between organic and paid promotion in social networks by the name of these methods. Publication of organic posts on social networks is free and is usually used to attract subscribers and people with whom you want to share the information received. Paid content on social networks is available to a wide audience outside of your subscribers, but this way of promotion requires an investment of money.
Organic and paid posts on social networks have their advantages and disadvantages. Below we decided to list the most basic pros and cons of each of these types of marketing.
BENEFITS OF ORGANIC PROMOTION ON SOCIAL MEDIA
It is more cost-effective.
In theory, maintaining organic activity on social networks is absolutely free. Publishing posts on Facebook, Instagram, Vkontakte, does not require any costs. All the expenses that you incur will be associated with the work of interacting with your community and creating content for filling channels on social networks. You can delegate these tasks to dedicated team members, freelancers, or agencies. They can also be included in the daily duties of some employees.
One way or another, the implementation of organic promotion in social networks does not require immediate investment. If your budget is limited and you are confident that you can create high-quality and thoughtful content, then this type of marketing will be most suitable for you.
It allows you to interact with customers and help them directly.
Social networks are an excellent platform for constant interaction with customers and the provision of services to them. A competently promoted and active profile on the social network provides users with an accessible and official place to post questions, complaints, and compliments. If you can allocate time and resources to constantly respond to most (if not all) customer requests, then you will get a big return on your investments in organic promotion on social networks.
It helps shape brand identity.
Using company profiles on social networks, you can express a certain personality of your brand. Your accounts can increase your return on marketing investments through witty posts, helpful tips, and more. Customers will begin to associate good qualities with your brand. For example, the Taco Bell profile on Twitter is famous for its corporate identity, which the fast-food chain has established thanks to its interaction with the audience and the publication of funny content.
DISADVANTAGES OF ORGANIC PROMOTION ON SOCIAL MEDIA
It may take too much time.
Constantly creating first-class content and actively interacting with the audience is far from easy. You will not be able to quickly complete this task during the lunch break. This approach requires full-time employment and significant effort. If you do not have dedicated team members or you do not use outside help, it can take a tremendous amount of time to maintain activity on social networks.
Algorithms are unstable and difficult to understand.
The content that your audience sees on social networks is determined by the algorithms. They are designed to sort publications by relevance and potential benefit to the subscriber, rather than by time of publication.
The success of an organic social media marketing strategy depends on your ability to deliver content to existing and potential customers. That is why it is very important to understand how the algorithms involved in social networks work. Unfortunately, in words, it is much easier to do than in practice.
Social network algorithms are not always easy to understand and master. Even if you succeed in doing this, they are very likely to change. It can take a lot of effort to learn the principles of these algorithms and to adapt to them when creating content for social networks.
It’s less flexible in terms of reach
Reaching your audience from your organic marketing efforts on social media depends on how actively your content is distributed by subscribers. This means that you can only promote anything directly to your audience and the people with whom they share. You will not be able to distribute content among a specific demographic group or specific types of users, which is possible thanks to paid publications on social networks.
THE BENEFITS OF PAID PROMOTION ON SOCIAL NETWORKS
You can target specific users to increase your audience reach.
Paid advertising on social networks allows you to accurately identify and reach certain demographic groups of people who will be most susceptible to your offers. You can sort users by categories such as location, age, gender or interests, and place targeted ads on your social networks. This gives you the opportunity to reach out to potential customers who are more likely to be interested in your offers.
Its payment model fits any budget.
Paid promotion on social networks is made in such a way as to fit almost any budget. As a rule, pay per click (PPC) is charged, that is, you only need to pay for clicks or those impressions of ads with which users directly interacted.
Many platforms allow you to limit the budget for showing ads, so you will never spend more than you expect. In addition, advertising for certain target audiences can be cheaper than for others, which allows you to strategically place ads to satisfy various potentially profitable niches.
The results will be noticeable faster.
Organic promotion in social networks involves long-term work, and also requires effort and the development of a marketing strategy. You will have to create content in accordance with the algorithms of social networks, look for ways to interest potential customers, and actively work to keep existing subscribers and attract new ones.
Paid promotion on social networks allows you to avoid the whole process and instantly place ads in the advertising channels of potential customers.
THE DISADVANTAGES OF PAID PROMOTION ON SOCIAL NETWORKS
Return on investment may be negligible
Paid promotion on social networks is ideally described by its name. Regardless of the size of your investment, you still spend money. Funds can be wasted if your marketing efforts prove ineffective. By constantly experimenting and failing with paid advertising campaigns on social networks, you essentially burn money. This happens quite often.
If you own a small business and you do not have the knowledge and skills necessary for the effective coordination of your strategy for paid promotion in social networks, you risk wasting resources that can be more successfully distributed between other forms of marketing.
You may face high competition
Social media marketing is far from secret development. According to Statista, in 2019, approximately 91 percent of all US companies to some extent bought paid placements on social networks.
To succeed in a highly competitive environment, you will have to put up with high CPC to achieve targeted demographics. You also need high-quality and attention-grabbing content to really benefit from the money invested in advertising.
It requires close attention
Paid promotion on social networks is rarely unchanged. It must be constantly monitored, analyzed, and subsequently adjusted to get the most out of it. Many platforms offer analytics tools that measure the effectiveness of ads. This data is not trivial and cannot be ignored. You will have to carefully analyze them.
Thanks to this, you can understand how to better structure your ads – but sometimes it can be difficult. Paid social media posting is usually only as effective as the amount of effort you put into it. And in many, if not most cases, it will take a significant part of your time to optimize it.
ORGANIC AND PAID PROMOTION IN SOCIAL NETWORKS: RESULTS
It is impossible to determine which of these promotion methods is better. Both methods are great for different enterprises with different priorities in different situations.
If your business does not have a budget to implement a full-fledged paid promotion strategy on social networks, try focusing on an organic approach. Create first-class content, improve profiles on social networks, and actively interact with your customers on the Internet.
However, if your business has a significant marketing budget and it desperately needs to immediately attract new customers, you should give preference to paid promotion.
Ideally, you should find a way to combine both methods into one common promotion strategy on social networks. Use paid placements to quickly increase brand awareness and attract an audience to your profiles.
Once you have a decent number of subscribers, use high-quality organic content and an active presence to attract their attention, turn them into customers, and maintain long and profitable relationships with them.