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Organic Vs Paid Social Media [How to Choose]

Organic Vs Paid Social media - How to choose the right one
  • Andre Kay
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With the growing popularity of social media, it is evident that it is here to stay. You have made a good marketing decision if you’re using social media for your small business. However, you must determine how to balance organic social vs paid social.

Utilizing all the platform’s options when creating a strong social media profile is important. Developing a balanced content calendar is the greatest way to guarantee that your content will have the best reach, engagement, and impact. Looking at your content in terms of paid vs. organic content is the simplest way to analyze this. 

One of the biggest misconceptions about social media marketing is that only paid ads work well and can increase your following. A well-planned organic content can have just as much of an impact as paid social media content.

This article will give a detailed breakdown of paid versus organic social media and their pros and cons. 

About Sociallybuzz, Inc

Sociallybuzz is a leading social media marketing, management, and digital advertising agency for small and medium-sized businesses. With over 12 years of experience, we know how to create and execute marketing campaigns that will help you grow your business. Our social media agency has created successful targeted social media campaigns that acquired our customers more leads, sales, and revenue.

Check out some of our case studies:

  1. 10.57% Conversion for Our Client Leveraging Google Performance Max. Learn More
  2. We used Facebook Ads and Google Ads to Drive Over 6 Figures in Sales for a B2B Brand. Read More
  3. 18X Return on Advertising Spend and Over $3 Million in Sales for an Online Store. Read More

Since 2009 Sociallybuzz has been helping small businesses win; we have a team of experts who know how to use social media and digital advertising channels to reach and convert your target audience anywhere on the internet.

Paid Vs Organic Social Media

You can tell the primary distinction between organic and paid social media from their names. “Organic social media” refers to unpaid content on your business accounts.

Organic social media is free. You typically post content to reach your followers and those they share it with. 

“Paid social media” refers to any sponsored marketing or advertising initiatives on your social media business accounts. Paid social media costs money to get your content in front of your followers and reach an audience beyond your followers.

Organic and paid social media are distinct marketing strategies that work best for various objectives. It pays to understand their pros and cons for a comprehensive strategy that balances awareness and conversion.

Understanding Organic Social Media Marketing

Understanding the purpose of organic social media for your business is a good place to start. 

Consider a prospective customer who has just learned about your business from a friend and looks it up on social media to discover your most recent posts are from two years ago.

To make matters worse, you only have a small number of followers. They’ll likely write off your company as a one-person business and wonder if you’re still in operation. On the other hand, you’re more prone to win a prospective customer over if you’re active on social media, sharing a variety of thought-leadership content, customer support help, new product releases, etc.

Organic social media is a long-term strategy that helps you hold the attention of new and existing customers long enough to gain their loyalty. Having constant and active audience engagement lets your audience know you’re up and running and prepared for business. Organic social media is a means of offering customer support. 

Another important purpose of organic social media is to build relationships and increase your brand reputation. In a survey of 1,000 consumers, 58% of respondents said they first visit a brand’s social media accounts before going to its website. This should suggest that your organic content is the first point of contact with customers when they visit your social media pages. 

With more and more consumers turning to social media to learn about brands, organic social media combines to create what is effectively a social website. They help boost your brand reputation in the eyes of prospective customers who are weighing whether or not to do business with you.

Examples of organic social media include organic posts and content marketing (posts, links to articles, videos, infographics etc.). These may be created by your business or shared by a similar business.

Best Practices for Organic Social Media Marketing

Before setting the motion for organic social media, keep in mind the following:

  • Promote your brand. Be intentional about branding. How do you want your audience to perceive your business? What information do you want to leave at their disposal? Check your social media platforms to see if your content reflects these things. If not, develop content that highlights your work and your values. Be sure it’s prominently displayed at the top of your social media profiles. You have a great chance to reinforce your brand with your organic content. 
  • Make the most of your uniqueness. As you cut back on sales pitches and advertising, use the time to promote who you are. Humanize your brand. Display the people who make up your company, corporate principles, and interests.
  • Cut back on your promotions. Ads are the place for sales talk. Of course, it never hurts to provide an occasional exclusive promotion for your devoted customers. However, these advertisements must be interspersed with informative material to build viewers’ familiarity, confidence, and sense of connection with you. Concentrate on providing information your followers and potential customers find beneficial rather than trying to convince them to purchase. Use your organic content to inspire, educate, and share your story. 

Recommended: How to outsource social media for small businesses

Understanding Paid Social Media Marketing

Unlike organic social media, where you patiently build your audience and wait to be discovered, paid social media is a sure bet to instant visibility. Although there is no way to ensure engagement, there is a certainty for a rapid, wide reach and a fast way to get your business in front of your ideal customers.

As the popularity of paid social media is growing, businesses are making marketing investments with paid social media, and customers are increasingly making purchases as a result of seeing social media advertisements. 96% of marketers report spending money on video ads, and 91% say they are happy with their social video marketing results.

Paid social can seem intimidating if you’re starting, but it can be a valid approach to raise your business profile, build brand awareness, direct more people to your website, and improve sales.

You should utilize paid social media to reach a large audience, reach a completely new targeted group, employ precise targeting, leverage your finest content, and enhance site traffic. 

Examples of paid social media include Influencer marketing, branded content, display ads, and social PPC. 

Best Practices for Paid Social Media Marketing

The following ideas will help you maximize the effectiveness of your social media advertising strategies:

  • Keep your promotional content brief and straight to the point. This doesn’t mean your content should be bland. Find a to combine these two qualities into your content — short and attention-grabbing. Get your point across fast while delivering a message that will connect with the audience you are aiming for. Video advertisements should not last more than 15 to 30 seconds. It’s essential to keep your video or messaging brief and direct so that people who may not be familiar with you or actively seeking out content from your brand can easily connect with your social media ads in their Feed. 
  • Social media ads are very successful because of their targeting. Target the right audience. Amazing results can be achieved when combined with the correct audience and the right messaging. When determining your ideal audience, consider your consumers’ locations, demographics, interests, and where they hang out online. 
  • Add a clear call to action. Make it obvious, so your audience knows what action you want them to take. Calls to action don’t always result in a purchase. They might result in a video view, subscription, sign-up, or a redirect to check out more of your content. Use action verbs such as “shop,” “visit,” “purchase,” “order,” “download,” “Subscribe,” “learn more,” “find out how,” etc., at the beginning of your calls to action to get your viewers or visitors clear on what to do next. Encourage them to “buy now” if you’re looking to increase sales. Add a time-limited special offer to create a sense of urgency. 
  • Don’t settle until you get what works for you. Try again if your first attempt proves unsuccessful. Try different messaging strategies, images, and calls to action to improve your outcomes. 

Cae Study:
We used Facebook Ads and Google Ads to Drive Over 6 Figures in Sales for a B2B Brand. Read More

Pros of Organic Social Media 

Below are the advantages of organic social media marketing.

Requires less or no cost

Organic social media does not require immediate payment to get started. It is free. It only requires a great deal of time. You will have to spend a little money if you’d have others manage your organic social media. 

Whether it is handled by a dedicated team, outsourced to freelancers or agencies, or integrated into the regular duties of some employees, the work required to interact with your social media audience and create posts for your feeds would be what would incur a cost. 

Apart from this, posting on any social media platform like LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook wouldn’t cost you a dime. 

Organic social media might be your best option if your business is on a tight budget. Maintaining an organic social media presence with the right strategy and attention can be inexpensive and yield outstanding results. 

Builds credibility and social proof 

As you continue filling up your social media channels with great and interesting content, you’ll gradually build up your following. Customers, prospective buyers, industry influencers, and those simply interested in your line of business will begin to gravitate toward your brand. 

A growing social media following serves as social proof: any business with a sizable audience must be doing something well. It enables you to open your business identity and allows people to fully understand what you’re all about, thereby reinforcing your credibility. 

It can also position your business as a thought leader and as a voice worth listening to. 

Offers access to helpful feedback and direct engagement with customers

Organic social media is a great approach to regularly interacting with your customers. Engaging frequently with your audience will help you better understand your customers’ pain points and gain invaluable insights for proffering solutions. 

Moreover, organic social provides a 360-degree customer feedback channel, empowering you with helpful information for successful and improved transactions. 

Responding directly and satisfactorily to customers’ concerns and questions will give them a personalized experience and further strengthen their loyalty toward your brand. 

Cons of Organic Social Media 

Below are the disadvantages of organic social media marketing.

It can take a long time to produce results

It is one thing for a user to follow a business account on social media and quite another to engage with their posts. Growing organic social media is a full-time job. Producing meaningful results requires time, investment, energy, and effort. 

It can be much more draining if you don’t have a dedicated team or agency you outsource to. 

Effective is not achieved in a snap. Building an audience and getting them to engage with your posts takes time. 

Ever-changing social media algorithms can negatively impact your organic social media 

Social media algorithms sort posts by relevancy and potential engagement, not by publication time. This might deter the visibility of your posts, especially if you’re trying to increase your following. 

Since the success of your organic social media campaigns depends on your ability to get your content in front of both current and prospective customers, understanding the algorithms underlying these platforms is vital. But social media algorithms aren’t always simple to understand, and even if you do, there’s a strong possibility they’ll change. 

The constantly changing social media algorithms may even go so far as boosting other posts to your audience while suppressing yours. 

Case Study:

18X Return on Advertising Spend and Over $3 Million in Sales for an Online Store. Read More

It is not demographic-specific 

Because organic social media does not target specific demographics, there is a high possibility that some of your audience wouldn’t find your post relevant. 

You cannot share your post with your preferred demographics since you can only reach your immediate audience and the people they share it with. The immediate reach of your organic social media efforts is only as far as your followers take it.

Pros of Paid Social Media 

Advantages of using paid social media to grow your business

It produces immediate results 

Paid social media is an effective way of gaining a large audience’s attention. It is direct, and the result is immediate. 

Unlike organic social media, where you start from scratch and work hard to retain your followers, in paid social media, you don’t have to worry about creating posts that align with the social media algorithm. All you need to do is post content and have them immediately in front of your customers. 

It targets a specific audience

Paid social media gets your post in front of your desired demographics. It enables you to connect with the audience you trust would be receptive to your content and extends your reach beyond your followers.

Social media users can be sorted by factors like region, age, gender, or interests, and as a result, you can display relevant ads in their social media feeds.

It is budget-friendly and measurable 

Paid social media is budget-friendly; it can be set up to fit almost any budget. It uses the pay-per-click model, meaning you only have to pay if people view or engage on your paid social media content.

Measuring effectiveness is easier with paid social media. You’ll always have access to a variety of current metrics once your ads are up and running, including impressions, click-through rates (CTR), engagement rates (ER), cost per click (CPC), etc. You can then fine-tune your strategy by determining which channels, demographics, influencers, and copy/design strategies work best for you. 

Recommended: Best sites to advertise your small business online

Cons of Paid Social Media 

Disadvantages of using paid social media marketing.

Returns are not guaranteed 

The possibility of losing money exists in paid social media, as with any other investment. 

If you run a small company and lack the knowledge and expertise required to coordinate your paid social strategy successfully, you may find yourself wasting money that could be better spent on other types of marketing. 

Case Study:

18X Return on Advertising Spend and Over $3 Million in Sales for an Online Store. Read More

It requires consistent monitoring and optimization

Understanding how to structure your paid social media messaging requires much attention. You must continuously monitor, analyze and adjust your messaging to understand your ads’ performance and get the most out of them. 

Paid social media is frequently only as successful as the work you put in. And that will take up a good deal of time.

It has a high level of competition

Paid is crowded and hence highly competitive. You’ll have to learn the ropes and be on top of your game to make tangible results. 

Bottom Line – Organic vs Paid Social: Which Should You Choose?

Both organic and paid social media are beneficial depending on your business. Even though it’s simple to weigh the pros and cons of paid versus organic social media for small businesses, the truth is that you should be using both. Or you can start with organic social media if you can’t yet go with completely paid social media. 

Generally, one approach might fit your budget better or be more successful. To effectively market your small business, exploring the two options is crucial.

About Sociallybuzz

Sociallybuzz is a leading social media marketing, management, and digital advertising agency for small and medium-sized businesses. With over 12 years of experience, we know how to create and execute marketing campaigns that will help you grow your business. Our social media agency has created successful targeted social media campaigns that acquired our customers more leads, sales, and revenue.

Check out some of our case studies:

  1. 10.57% Conversion for Our Client Leveraging Google Performance Max. Learn More
  2. We used Facebook Ads and Google Ads to Drive Over 6 Figures in Sales for a B2B Brand. Read More
  3. 18X Return on Advertising Spend and Over $3 Million in Sales for an Online Store. Read More

Since 2009 Sociallybuzz has been helping small businesses win; we have a team of experts who know how to use social media and digital advertising channels to reach and convert your target audience anywhere on the internet.

Get in touch for a free consultation call

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