A business that does not advertise is a dead one.
It is like staring at a lady in a bar with the lights off. Hoping to get her attention.
She, unfortunately, cannot see you, and therefore, she cannot decide if she likes you or not.
Why else would you open a business and not put in the work required to attract the set of people who will make the business profitable – customers?
Technological advancement in recent times has caused a shift in consumer behavior. This makes it necessary to integrate a well-thought-out digital strategy as you seek to thrive in the marketplace.
There are a couple of online advertising platforms in Nigeria. And in this article, I will answer the question, “Where do I advertise my business online?”
..And a bit of, ‘how to advertise your business online in Nigeria’.
How to advertise your business online in Nigeria.
How to advertise your business online in Nigeria.
Let us start with…
This is a platform you can use to advertise your business online.
You probably go on WhatsApp every day. And just like you, your audience does too. They use it to communicate with their friends and families, and with a great strategy, you can reach them successfully there.
How does it work?
Simply take pictures of the product you have for sale, post a compelling but short write-up on your status and attach the images on there.
People from your contacts will see this, and anyone interested will reach out to you.
There is, however, a downside to using this platform to promote your business; firstly, your ad’s reach is limited.
This is because only people on your contact list and those with your mobile number will see the ad.
Secondly, you need to keep growing your contact list and have them save your mobile number. This is the only way they can see your status update.
Register Your Business Profile on Google.
A client of mine saw a rise in inquiries and visitors to her business after she set up Google my business profile on Google. She was amazed.
When you register your business freely on Google, your business Profile would appear when people search on Google business related to yours, yours included.
This way, your business is online for people to stumble upon.
To register your business on Google, you’ll be asked to fill in some other vital information.
To register your business on google, click here
Here are a few of its advantages:
- It is Free.
- It can help your customers get your physical location.
- You can display certain things about your business that are useful to your customers. Such as your description, hours of operation, a call button, and photos.
- You can have reviews and ratings. This helps build trust for as many that search out and find your business.
- Gain insights about your customers through the Google insight tab available and also be able to use the Google analytics tool to understand the traffic to your sites.
There are some disadvantages of only using this as a means of advertising, and the most striking is that… You don’t have control of your audience coming in.
In a way, it is similar to a billboard. You can only hope that as a viewer sees it, he’ll be interested enough to engage with you.
Not to worry, the next option gives you a wider reach.
Classified Sites –
This is an easy option when it comes to advertising your products online.
Classified sites are platforms created to allow business owners to list their products for people to come and see them.
These platforms give you room to display your contact details, and interested individuals can reach out to you.
Consider these platforms as an exhibition.
Most of the people who come here are window shoppers, they would stop by your stand and see what you have, and if the offer is good enough, they’ll reach out to you.
Furthermore, the ad creation process on classified sites is simple. You signup, and enter in all the details (picture, description, etc.) of your products.
…But there are also downsides to using this system. One, you have no control over your results.
Other businesses have their products posted here as well, so you will have to fight for the attention of the buyers with hundred similar ones.
Most of these businesses will probably be selling the same product cheaper than you.
So while this is an okay place to start since it is free, you should consider the other options as they will serve you better both in exposure and control.
Secondly, if you run a service-based business, getting clients will be tough with this approach.
Sponsored Post on Blogs
This shouldn’t be new to you. You must have seen some posts on some top blogs where the intent is to make sales. Sometimes, they are tagged ‘sponsored’ or ‘sponsored post’ at the top.
These posts are created by other businesses. Such a business would pay the blog owner an agreed price for the content to be posted on the site.
This can be a successful way to advertise, but it is still a limited one.
Limited in the sense that :
- The business owner must be sure that the traffic to the blog is relevant for the kind of service or product he/she sells.
- There is no way to track how successful this means of online marketing is.A business might get sales from this process, but the overall cost might be detrimental to the Business. Successful advertising should be measurable.
(Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.) – As of June 2018, over 25,000,000 Nigerians above 18 use the most popular Social media website of all – Facebook.
What does this suggest to you?
This strategy works for any kind of business, whether you sell products or services.
Or if yours is built to be of service to other businesses.
The truth is that…
And I don’t mean posting your products on your timeline until all your friends get tired of you…or spamming all the groups you belong to until they remove you, No!
I also don’t mean having social media handles on these platforms and making posts on them, hoping that someone will miraculously see them.
Although having a handle is a good start, as it will be the channel that’ll you’ll use to advertise on these platforms.
It involves using social media to reach the audience that needs what you sell and make profits from them.
Using social media as a marketing channel (I’ll focus on Facebook now) allows you to target your prospects by…
- Demographics(Age range, marital status, e..t.c ).
- Geography(their location)
Among many other things, This helps you show your advertising campaigns to only those interested in seeing them.
Think about that, if you want to sell a book on building a business, you can easily set up your Ads to target only those who are interested in entrepreneurship…
Even going as far as reaching people within an age range living in a city where you know they are more likely to respond to your Ad positively.
You could also target people who have visited your website. (This could also be a particular page or a combination of pages on your website).
Have you ever searched for something on Jumia, and then you see their ads targeting you all around?
This is what we call retargeting. And it is a possibility for any business that wants to try it out.
Here are specific reasons why you need to start using Facebook Ads to advertise.
- It is, by far, the quickest and most reliable way to advertise on the internet.
- You have control over who sees your adverts.This means that you can target people likely to be interested in what you’re selling, be it a service or a product.
- There are unique ways to target your audience.This helps save you time and the money you’ll have spent looking for new sets of audiences for new ads.
- You are in charge of the traffic coming to our site.So rather than wait and hope that someone stumbles on your site through a google search, you can attract them in.
- You’ll pay far less for marketing on Facebook in comparison to the results you’ll get from using them.This price is in no way compared to using traditional marketing channels that are extremely expensive.
- Paying for your Facebook ads is easy.
- Everything is measurable. You can analyze everything. This helps you find out what is working and what isn’t.You can go as far as knowing who checked your site, your service page, or whatever, where they stopped. This helps you re-strategize for better results.
So how do you get started with that?
- Step 1. Go to business.facebook.com and create a business account.
- Step 2. Connect your Facebook page to your ad account or create a new Facebook page (if you don’t already have one).
- Step 3. Create an Ad account to use for your promotions.
- Step 4. Connect a payment method to your ad account.
- Step 5. Create your ads.
While the technical parts of setting up your social media advertising campaign are simple…
Here’s a full guide to how to run a successful Facebook Ad as a beginner
If you are serious about promoting your business, then you should be investing in Social Media Marketing… For me, it is the best way to get new customers.
You need to, however, understand the science behind running successful Ad campaigns. Otherwise, you will give Facebook your money without seeing any returns on investment.
I have shown you a number of ways on how to advertise your business online in Nigeria. Whichever way you choose to advertise you depends on you. What is most important is that you do.
Remember, a business without advertisement is a dead business. You cannot get the attention of anyone in the dark.
Drop any questions you have as a comment, and I will reply as quickly as I can.