When looking for new traffic sources, it’s important to find the right channel. The right channel means you have the right audience at the right price. For many years, Facebook was the dominant beast in this game, but with other platforms stepping in, their dominance is in question. Especially with the massive boycott of their platform by global brands. If you’re in media and driving traffic for yourself or others, you’ve probably questioned Facebook by now. But where do you go from here? What platforms are the best? In a bold move, TikTok is now offering $2,000 in advertising credit to try to gain market share from Facebook. Very tempating to marketers indeed. However when assessing TikTok ads vs Facebook ads, it’s important to look at all relevant factors.
Overview of Social Traffic: Watch out for TikTok
There are numerous platforms you can drive traffic on. Obviously Facebook is still a great source of traffic for many publishers and e-commerce firms, but in recent years ad tech among big social networks has been enhanced tremendously. Here’s a quick look.
- Facebook + Instagram, 3.6B monthly active users – as they do away with cookies and migrate to server-to-server communication for tracking conversions, it remains the #1 platform for many.
- Snapchat, 400M monthly active users – with the launch of their detailed targeting a few years ago, Snapchat attempted to mimic many of the features offered by Facebook. Many of our publisher clients found success with Snapchat traffic, but it resulted in lower CPMs. For some, it was worth it because margins were maintained. More on this below.
- Linkedin, 260M monthly active users – arguable a rising start for B2B firms, and the level of advertising is extremely high-brow. Cheesy ads on Linkedin just won’t cut it. Their ad intelligence and optimization still has a way to go.
- Reddit, 430M monthly readers – a favorite of Bernie Sanders, Reddit traffic is extremely cheap simply because there isn’t that much demand. It’s not that the audience is low-quality, in fact it’s probably some of the highest quality. But advertisers just haven’t crowded this space the way they are with others.
- TikTok, 800M monthly active users – a favorite of Gary Vee and the new beast on the block, second only to Facebook / Instagram in terms of active users. Given the amount of data they are collecting, their ad platform probably isn’t that far behind Facebook. Below we answer TikTok Ads vs Facebook Ads, which is better?
Cheaper Traffic = Less Revenue but don’t lose sight of gross profit.
When deciding on a platform our clients make the cost vs. benefit analysis every time. Gross profit must be positive and worth it. If you have an audience mismatch, or a fickle audience like millennial or Gen-Z, your cost of acquisition will go down, and so will your advertiser CPMs. But that’s not to say you won’t make money. Occasionally they may find a nugget of arbitrage in a new traffic source, but that quickly disappears and fat gross margins are ephemeral. Think of pursuing a new traffic source like a school of fish — the first one to go will have fat profits, then once others follow, profits get compressed. Keep this in mind when deciding on a platform. But also bear in mind that just because the CPM returns go down, doesn’t mean it’s not worth it. The cost of acquisition may also go down, often times further than CPMs do, making the channel pursuit worth it.
TikTok Ads vs. Facebook Ads: Which is Better?
It’s important to know that the answer here is “it depends”. When assessing TikTok ads vs Facebook ads, the answer comes down to whether you’re targeting a certain audience or letting the pixel do the targeting for you. Our clients have seen much success with letting Facebook’s algorithm do the work. It’s quite fascinating actually. They set-up their pixel, get some visitors, track events and interactions, and let Facebook build their audience from pixel data. However if you want to target millennials and Gen Z and have a very specific product offering for them, TikTok may be your best bet since that’s the platform those generations have migrated too. TikTok also offers a pixel that communicates back to the platform to gather behavior and event data, which is even more helpful given the audience you’d be targeting.
Factors to consider in driving traffic
- Product offering – advertising a home security system? TikTok probably isn’t the right place. Advertising the ability to invest a few dollars in a bottle of wine, TikTok is likely a good channel to test. Offering something extremely niche? Try a sub-reddit thread where your target audience lurks.
- Target audience – who are you targeting? Then ask yourself, where do they play on the internet? TikTok, or Facebook? Or Reddit? Maybe Linkedin if it’s a consultancy or accounting firm.
- Cost of acquisition – you may find the right audience on a certain platform, that leads to sales, but the cost of acquisition is too high. Engage a professional media buyer if that’s the case via a freelance platform like Upwork or MarketerHire.
- Targeting vs. Pixel – again, the heavy lifting is done by the pixel technology but if you want to target directly, we think Reddit is the best because sub-Reddits have very specific target audiences.
The #1 Factor to Consider in Media Buying
No matter where you deploy your cash, the most important factor is having the appropriate cash on hand to drive traffic and sales. Often times you will have a hot campaign, but not have the funds to deploy into it. There is nothing more frustrating than leaving money on the table, and in a sense that is what happens when you have a high-return ad campaign you can’t spend more on. Sign-up with OAREX today to assure you never run out of cash.