Creative best practices for social media ads

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Today's media landscape places new demands on how to create engaging content and communicate with the target groups of tomorrow. Let us give you 8 quick tips on how to grab attention with your social media ads!

Our world is constantly changing and our creative creation and content that we produce have a greater impact than ever. The digitizing is faster than ever in the effects of Covid-19 and we are spending more and more time in front of our screens and devices.

Therefore, we need to create content that engages and is value-creating for the user, in order to actually make an impression in the digital noise and at the same time make the world a slightly more valuable place. To stand out among the large amount of advertising and publicity we encounter daily – the main purpose needs to be to be remembered a little longer, instead of being forgotten the day or second after when we have scrolled on. More and more people are considered tired of advertising, which is a challenge for the media industry. This raises the question; What should we keep in mind when creating content for social media, where the purpose is to grab the attention early and be remembered by the audience?

Below we have collected a couple of simple, creative and technical recommendations that will take you a bit along the way, but remember that it is always the main message that has the power of impact.

Branding
Introduce the brand by showing the logo at the beginning of a film, especially in the awareness phase of your social media campaigns so that the unprotected audiences that don’t already know your brand will remember it.

Break the rules
Be creative and don’t cling to previously established graphic guidelines at the level of detail. Try to experiment with small effects, details and how you can present a message in a smarter way. Do not limit your ideas and content based on how previous campaigns and content have looked like, have a habit of always doing something different. No matter how big or small it is.

Create smart A/B tests
We mention it often and it’s a great way to see what’s actually working and to find out what people are reacting and interacting with linked to your brand. Test different colors, fonts, language and word choice, images, etc. so that you more easily can nuance your content towards your campaign objectives along the way based on your creatives best performance.

Format & placements
Make sure the content is tailored to the placement and platform where it will be displayed and consumed. Some extra love is needed to make it look professional and user friendly. Take advantage of the formats you have at your disposal.

Content strategy
In a competitive climate, it’s important to have clear guidelines for success with your content strategy in social media. Video and the moving format are, surprising, still what performs and engages best. So this is preferable to image when it comes to your advertising. This is a trend that will continue to grow, and which the largest companies today are competing about; how long they can engage you with their video ad.

Today we have an average of 1.7 seconds to get a person’s attention in social media. So where to start when it comes to content strategies?

Start creating your content strategy according to the upper funnel and brand building phase. This is where you will communicate your brand towards new audiences and potential customers. In the so called awareness phase, the content must grab attention and be engaging for people in order for them to watch further and to consider consuming your future communication. The only thing you should focus on here is what pure and simple feeling you want to associate your brand with.

Furthermore, focus on the consideration phase, where the already engaged audience is retentive for more information and possibly would consider consuming your services or products. This is where you can communicate more concrete information, unique selling points or values about your business.

In the so called conversion phase, it is important to put your product or service in a creative context. If you want to make an impact of a major purchase decision, an example is to show the product in a human environment where you showcase the different uses and positive opportunities. Review each step in your sales cycle and plan, as well as produce content for different scenarios and behaviors.

Video length
“Shorter is better”. You have 1.7 seconds to grab attention and attract your target audience. Make sure to create videos as short as possible, but as long as needed. For social media ads, a recommendation is to keep it at a maximum of 15 seconds.

Sound and no sound
The majority have the sound muted, so make sure that your content is adapted for sound of and that your message is understandable without sound. Showcase the use of your product or service in the video or image and print or make motions of your messages with creative text. At the same time, you should put som love on sound effects and music for the people who actually have the sound turned on. Because in that case, half of the experience is the sound, so it’s not a good idea to exclude sound completely – which gives a feeling of something missing.

Transitions
Make sure you have a good transition between clips and scenes that continue to engage the target audience – be creative and experimental.

Summary
Today and compared to traditional marketing, content is about trying yourself out, thinking outside the box and creating different content. In that way, you will have a greater chance of engaging people and making them remember your brand and message a little longer. In a world that is changing rapidly, a tip can be to monitor the competitors around the world for inspiration and to also review what is trending, or to do the opposite. Just because something works today does not have to mean that it will work tomorrow – changes will happen faster than we know and it is important to be constantly agile in the way we work and open to new things. Good luck!

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