Are you looking for new ad options for your advertisers? Digital ad tactics offer so many ways to connect with audiences, and building the ideal campaign includes many layers. For advertisers eager to leverage social media for advertising, you can provide them with a strategy to meet their audience. But what about other social options that act more like display ads? Social display ads are another opportunity to expand reach and performance.

What Are Social Display Ads?

Display ads appear as images, videos or GIFs in the form of banners on websites and apps. Social media advertising involves using static or video ad formats on social sites. Both options offer ways to target specific audiences, and social display ads marry the two. They have the components that make a great social post combined with the reach of display ads outside of social channels.

How Do Social Display Ads Work, and What Options Are Available?

Social display ads take existing posts or ads from a brand’s social channels and present them as programmatic display ads. These campaigns run across the open web to extend the scale at a fraction of the cost. They provide efficiency and flexibility to advertisers because they run programmatically. This allows for greater control over segmenting, campaign budget, targeting, etc.

Social display ads are programmatically available on most popular social channels. Instagram and Facebook have become leaders in social display advertising. Other apps like Pinterest, Twitter, TikTok and LinkedIn are good options, depending on your client’s audience makeup. Social display ads, like banner ads, can include static images, videos or carousels. The content and objective of the campaign will help you recommend the best options.

The Pros of Social Display Ads

  • The statistics are in your advertiser’s favor. The number of consumers making purchases through social networks in the U.S. will hit 108 million by 2025. Social networks are now a favorite place for buyers to research brands and products to make informed purchase decisions. Close to 45% of people on the internet search for brand information on social media, and 55% of people learn about brands for the first time here.
  • Social display can be cost-effective and create more exposure to a business as part of an omnichannel campaign. With the ability to easily swap out existing social posts, you don’t need to spend additional time creating a new design.
  • Consumers have begun to ignore the banner ads and pop-ups they encounter while browsing, a phenomenon called banner blindness. Social display combats this by creating a more authentic experience. Because this type of ad appears as a social post, it feels more like content and less like a sales pitch. The results speak to this, with at least a 50% increase in click-through rate (CTR) performance compared to its traditional banner counterpart.

The Cons of Social Display Ads

  • Brands must have a consistent social presence to successfully deploy a social display ad campaign. The profiles need to be active with a strong brand identity and consistent posts to get the best results out of social display.
  • Advertisers must consider their audience before jumping into a social display strategy. With so many social channels, advertisers should choose where they spend their ad budget wisely. They should consider who the audience is, their interests, and where to find them based on these factors.
  • Social display ads require close monitoring. You’ll need to regularly check key metrics like CTR and impressions to get the best results. These insights will help you determine if you should swap an ad for a different post that may perform better. This helps identify the posts with a higher success rate and what content to avoid based on engagement.

Social Display Ads vs. Social Ads vs. Display Ads

So, why recommend social display ads as a complement or alternative to social or display ads? In most cases, they can all work together nicely in a multi-tactic campaign. Social display runs across the open web, extending reach for a fraction of the cost.

Another advantage of social display is that, since they run programmatically, you don’t have to get page access permissions, which can hold up execution. Also, these ads can incorporate geofencing, which is an excellent targeting booster for ads.


Ideas for Social Ad Display Campaigns

We’ve touched on some popular social channels your advertisers can use. Here are some campaign ideas to inspire your advertisers to explore those social channels.

  • Health and beauty products: Health and beauty products are great for social channels. Buyers want to see results and real people using the product. A video on TikTok or a reel on Instagram with a model using a moisturizer, lip gloss, hair volumizer, or whatever the product may be, is a great way to get a buyer to stop and watch the before and after. With the right targeting strategy, the ad will fit in with the content its audience expects on their feeds. The “Shop Now” link is in the ad, easily accessible for the buyer to get a closer look at the brand.
  • Entertainment: A local music venue that regularly has new acts needs to promote upcoming shows and boost ticket sales. Social display ads and programmatic buying can be hyper-specific about who will see the ads and where. If it’s a returning act, your advertiser can use footage from the last show to excite viewers. An image of the band could also entice viewers who love an experience over material things. The CTA to buy tickets shows up as a ribbon just under the image or video.
  • Home improvement and design: Pinterest is the ideal spot for home buyers and interior decorators to map out the vision for their next project. A user stumbles across the perfect end table they’ve been searching for to complete their midcentury modern bedroom. The “Shop” button is readily available and takes them straight to the product page. The advertiser earned that click by creating a quality pin with the most relevant tags and description and setting the proper parameters for a social ad. The post alone has value, and it becomes much more effective when the pin finds the right buyer in an authentic way.

Social Display Ads: Paving the Way for an Effective Ad Strategy

Display banners can sometimes miss the mark, which is part of why banner blindness is so pervasive. Social display ads flip the script and create an experience that feels familiar and engaging to users. They enhance a brand’s image and allow flexibility for your advertisers. Talk to them today about adding this ad tactic to their next campaign. You can get more insights on social media advertising by reading about this year’s trends.