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Advertising Types:

The Pros, Cons and Costs of Advertising

Social Media Ads

Social media advertising prices vary depending on multiple factors. Taking into consideration your targeted audience size, industry and ad design, the amount you spend for someone to click on your ad and become a customer isn’t a one-size-fits-all cost. While there are variations though, some general benchmark costs do exist.

Pros (swipe for cons)
Audience Variety: No matter who you’re targeting, chances are, you’ll find them on social media.

Editable Strategy: Is one of your ads underperforming? No problem. Make changes to your ad copy and targeting in real time to optimise performance.

Many Content Types: With social, you can use GIFs, images, and video for a more engaging advertising campaign.
Cons (swipe for pros)
Each Platform has Differing Users: The varied users on each social media network means that your ads may not perform equally across the different channels. For example, business owners might not be on LinkedIn yet and farmers may not be on Twitter.

Continual Monitoring: Checking on the real time data generated from your campaigns is continuous. This is because you’ll want to make sure your producing the greatest ROI.
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Is this a good fit for me?

If you have a limited marketing budget and want to spend it wisely then social media marketing could be right for you. It’s one of the most cost-effective and versatile strategies a small business can adopt to target their audience and increase sales over time.

Google Search Ads

Google Ads is a platform that works on an auction system. This plays a role in your costs. The auction model determines both ad placement and cost. The better your ad copy, the less likely it is that you’ll pay more to outbid your competitors. For an explanation of the different campaign types that exist, click here

Pros (swipe for cons)
Ads Are Highly Relevant: These ads appear when a user searches directly for your business offerings.

More Control Over your Ads: This advertising type allows you to amend your budgets, turn on certain ads and adjust the keywords you’re bidding for. This gives you real time control over your ads.

Ads Are Discreet: Some ads intrude on your time (take for example TV ads during a show or ads in the middle of an article.) Search ads only show up when a user is actively looking for your business.

Cons (swipe for pros)
It’s Aggressive: Google serves people looking for solutions. Every contender thinks they’ve got the solution so you’ll need to make sure you develop and maintain excellent ad copy.

Yours Won’t be the Only Ad: Depending on where your ads display (YouTube or some social media sites) there might only be enough space for one advert.
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Is this a good fit for me?

The best way to figure out if Google & Search Ads are right for your business is to perform a simple keyword search and see how many people are searching for your offerings. This will help you understand if this type of advertising is worth investing in.

Video Ads

If you don’t have an in-house video and audio team, you’ll need to invest in production equipment or pay an agency to film, edit and refine your videos for advertising.

Pros (swipe for cons)
Video Content is Super Popular: Collectively, 5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every day. It’s therefore a great channel to advertise your company on for good exposure.

Expand on your product: Video content enables you to demonstrate your product, include reviews or even just prove its concept. This helps viewers see the value in your product.

Modernise Your Brand: There’s a reason that your competitors are investing in video content. That’s because it’s become synonymous with internet searches.
Cons (swipe for pros)
Video Ads Can Be Skipped: Video ads are often seen as intrusive which means that viewers will try to skip the ad to continue interacting with content.

It’s Not Cheap: Video ads that are done expertly often carry a weighty price tag (due to production and equipment costs.)

Videos Need to be Great Quality: If you’re new to video production, you’ll need to ensure the video you produce is excellent quality. If not, you risk your brand coming across as less-than-professional.
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Is this a good fit for me?

Video ads can be an excellent way of promoting your brand and it’s catching on fast.  If you have the budget, video content is highly recommended.

Print (Newspaper & Magazine) Ads

Costing out print ads depends on the publication, its reach, frequency of circulation and the size & placement of your ad. Where there are some variations in cost, a general bench mark on the costs is available below-

Pros (swipe for cons)
You’ll Reach a Like-Minded Audience: Subscribers to print media likely all have a common theme; whether it’s that they all like baking or are just situated in the same area. If that suits your business then you’re on to a winner in the form of print ads.

It’s Ideal for Local Businesses: If your business is limited by its locality then advertising in your local magazine or newspaper could help you gain the exposure you’re looking for.
Cons (swipe for pros)
Print Circulation is Down: While there is still an audience that purchases print media, these numbers have dropped drastically due to the ease of availability of information/news online.

Ads Can be Ignored: There’s a chance that someone misses your ad completely or merely ignores it if they’re looking for specific content.

Exposure is not Definite: This comes down to the frequency of publication. If you’re promoting a deal or offer that’s time sensitive, the frequency of publication makes a huge difference.
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Is this a good fit for me?

If you’re looking to build brand trust and reach a wider audience then print ads might just be right for your business.  

Direct Mail Ads

Depending on the postage, design, printing and method of dissemination, costs can vary when it comes to advertising via direct mail.

Pros (swipe for cons)
Mail Requires Action When receiving direct mail, people generally pay attention to it (to help them decide if they’re going to use the information, or rather throw it out.)

You Can Include More: When compared to internet ads (which sometimes have constraints on spacing and size) you can include more information on a direct mail ad that speaks more to your offerings.

You Can Include More: When compared to internet ads (which sometimes have constraints on spacing and size) you can include more information on a direct mail ad that speaks more to your offerings.
Cons (swipe for pros)
Design Costs: Every time you send out a direct mail ad campaign you’ll likely require a new design. This, together with ink and printing costs, could become expensive.

Mail is Old-School: Targeting your immediate community using direct mail can give the sense that your brand isn’t modernised. Depending on your offering, this could be a blessing or a curse.
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Is this a good fit for me?

For owners of businesses that rely on serving their immediate community, direct mail ads can help you reach your target audience.

Transit: Billboards & Vehicles

The benefit that a prime location billboard has for a business can’t be overstated.  Billboards and transit ads are used to help people recognise your brand.

Pros (swipe for cons)
Their Visibility: You simply can’t ignore a billboard.

You Can Repeat Your Message: By this we mean that people who travel the same road daily will keep seeing your brand for the duration of the campaign.

Excellent For Local Businesses: Businesses use billboards to indicate their proximity in a certain area, which can help drive foot traffic through their doors.
Cons (swipe for pros)
Exposure is Short: You have a short period of time to make an impact as people pass by. Granted, if you place your billboard strategically (for example, where people get stuck in traffic) then your exposure can be longer.

Not Very Targeted: Due to the variety of people passing through a billboard area, it’s difficult to create a targeted message that will speak to everyone.

Not Very Actionable: A billboard doesn’t have any direct link to product pages (like online ads would have.) Remembering and taking the next step to making a connection with your brand can be a bit cumbersome for consumers.
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Is this a good fit for me?

This form of advertising is effective for building brand awareness and broadcasting your business. The visibility achieved by using this advertising avenue tends to be high. 

Radio Ads

Radio ads are a great way to tell your brand’s story. They also have a high recall rate. Radio ads are a great way to engage your audience, if done right.

Pros (swipe for cons)
It’s Agile: Radio ads have the ability to transition quickly and easily into related content.

It’s Targeted: Advertising on different shows and time-slots will give you a very targeted demographic of people who would be interested in your offerings.

It’s Fairly Cost Effective: Radio Ads in South Africa are fairly cost effective. Many stations are willing to work out a campaign based on budget alone.
Cons (swipe for pros)
Its Short Timespan: Radio ads are usually 30 seconds long, which doesn’t give you much time to present your offerings.

Limited Time-Slots: The key time-slots are usually morning and evening listeners and there are only so many advertising slots available in those timeframes.

It’s Often Background Noise: A radio often plays in the background, which may affect how many people actually listen to your ad.
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Is this a good fit for me?

Radio ads offer you the opportunity to deliver simple, yet powerful, messaging to a targeted set of people who may be interested in your offerings. It can be highly effective in building your sales.

What goes into determining your ad cost?

There are many variables that can influence the cost of advertising on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter, such as the industry you are in, the season, time of day and locations you are targeting

The two primary measurement tools to evaluate the cost of advertising on social  media are; “CPC” Cost per click and “CPM”, Cost per 1000 impressions. Here are the average costs of advertising across the 4 major social platforms

Facebook CPC of R7.05 and CPM of R125.32
Instagram CPC of R17.71 and CPM of R92.68
Twitter CPC of R7.33 and CPM of R79.67
LinkedIn CPC of R77.60 and CPM of R83.68

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What goes into determining your ad cost?

Google Advertising costs depend on your location, budget, industry and keywords.

The two primary measurement tools to evaluate the cost of advertising on social  media are; “CPC” Cost per click and “CPM”, Cost per 1000 impressions. On average, these costs are:

Google CPC of R13.76 and CPM of between R4.13 & R27.53

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What goes into determining your ad cost?

YouTube Advertising costs depend on your location, who your audience is, your ad format and how often you want your ad displayed to your audience. 

The two primary measurement tools to evaluate the cost of advertising on YouTube are; “PPV” Pay per view and “PPC”, Pay per click (or action taken). On average, these costs are:

YouTube PPV of R2.75 and PPC of R4.13

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What goes into determining your ad cost?

Print Advertising costs vary based on the publication, its reach, frequency of circulation, size of the ad and its placement. 

On average, though, these costs are:

Newspapers Between R2.00-R4.00 per person reached

Magazines Between R6 000.00- R300 000.00

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What goes into determining your ad cost?

Mailing list costs range anywhere from R650.00 to R4 734.00 for a 1000 contact list.

On top of this you’ll need to consider costs for postage, design, printing and dissemination.

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What goes into determining your ad cost?

Costs for billboard ads can also vary greatly. Generally, rentals can run from between R20 000.00 to R70 000.00 monthly, depending on the location. At their highest rates, they can cost anywhere from R13.53 to R270.52 per one thousand adults in the area (CPM).

Production costs range from R15 000.00 upwards.

Transit ads cost R6700.00 – R55 000.00 per month. Don’t forget to factor in production costs here, as well.

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What goes into determining your ad cost?

Costs for radio ads vary due to the time of your ad running, its frequency and the duration of the ad.

You can expect to pay from R580.00 to upwards of R2000.00 per 30 second ad. This excludes recording the ad (which some stations will do for an additional fee.)

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