Facebook is one of the largest media companies on the planet and has developed three sales channels to serve advertisers:
- Direct sales: Here they take a key account management approach to working with large global brands. Dedicated account team work directly with clients and/or their agencies. The company has a range of premium products that are exclusive to this group
- Inside sales: This team serves clients who spend in the $100k to $1m range on Facebook advertising. A sales representative deals directly with the company but little strategic support is offered
- Online sales: This is the self-serve channel where ads are bought and managed online. For brands wishing to do some higher volume ad buys, there are platform such as Ad Parlor and Blinq which eliminate a lot work by providing automated services.
Facebook offers a range of advertising vehicles too, to suit the needs of most brands:
- Sponsored stories: Research shows that people don’t want to be sold to on social networks. That’s where the sponsored story comes in because it provides for interaction and participation by allowing people to like or share the content. They are an increaslingly convenient vehicle too…Facebook Page administrators can promote content right from the page
- Marketplace Ads: There are four distinct types of marketplace advertisements. Standard ones drive traffic to a website. Like ones drive traffic to a Facebook page. Then there are application ads and event ads which drive traffic to the same.
In addtion, Facebook provides special offer vehicles, but these are available only via direct and inside sales.
Any brand that is serious about engaging consumers via Facebook should consider investing in Facebook advertising. Only a handful of fans and friends will ever see content organically and then, only a fraction of those will expose their friends virally to Facebook page content. Using any of the advertising vehicles will expand reach exponentially.
The Pay-Per-Click (PPC) model means that brands pay only for clicks, not for exposure or reach which adds considerable value in terms of awareness raising and brand recognition.
In addition, ads can be targeted very accurately. Facebook offers 15 options in narrowing the focus including demographics, socialgraphics and psychographics. This includes, age, sex, location, interests, relationships, languages, education.