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What are Display Ads? The Beginner’s Guide to Display Advertising Part 3 of 3

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Choose a Display Ad Platform

Most businesses go with Google because it has the widest outreach and an excellent suite of analytics tools. But you might also explore Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media platforms. Mixing and matching both can be an effective strategy, too. If you have a very niche audience or a narrow geographical field, you may prefer to do deals with individual websites on a case-by-case basis or contact successful affiliates in your industry sector.

You’re competing for space, position, and attention on every page your ads are served. Animations, GIFs and video can give you the edge.

How to Design Effective Display Ads 

The three core elements of any successful display ad are your brand name and logo, your UVP (unique value proposition) and a clear CTA (call-to-action). To be effective, a display ad must communicate everything in a matter of a few seconds or less! Clear, single-image, two-color designs are often best. Seek to keep a clear brand identity across all the ads in your campaign.

Copy should be simple and limited to two or three sentences. Two or three-word “catchlines” are powerful. Look at Nike’s “Just Do It,” Apple’s “Think Different,” Coke’s “The Real Thing,” and KFCs “Finger Lickin’ Good.”

No one wants to go back to the flashing banner ads of the early days of online advertising. But it makes sense to maximize your available visual assets. You’re competing for space, position, and attention on every page your ads are served. Animations, GIFs and video can give you the edge.  Compliance is important, too. Whatever designs you run, make sure you follow the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s guidelines. Also, check and follow any rules specified by the platform you use. 

Deliver on Your Promises 

If a consumer clicks on your ad and end up on a page that doesn’t match the style and design of the ad or makes a different offer to the ad itself, you’ve wasted your efforts as they’ll be confused and click away again. That’s one reason branding is so important. It’s a good idea to build tailor-made landing pages on your web properties that ads can lead to. And make sure you’re consistent in what you offer and what you deliver.

Rinse and Repeat 

Combining PPC display ads with your longer-term content marketing and SEO strategy can boost your overall effectiveness. It’s also a great way to go for short-term campaigns based on time-limited offers, sales, building brand awareness, and testing outreach to new audiences before investing in content and SEO. The keys are always good branding, careful targeting, a compelling message, and delivering on your promises.

Now you know what’s involved in making a successful and profitable display ad campaign. Once you become familiar with what’s needed and how it all works, it gets easier. Future campaigns can follow a preset “rinse-and-repeat” workflow.

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Greg

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