Your Guide to Understanding Digital Marketing: Social Media Advertising

phone with social media apps

Social media can be complex. You post often, write engaging copy, and have creative graphics, but you still aren’t getting the number of leads you’re after. This is where a paid ads strategy will help you break through the social media noise, reach your targeted audience, and gain qualified leads. 

Social Media Advertising vs Social Media Management

Social media advertising is a digital marketing technique that lets you advertise on any social media platform. The biggest difference between social media management (organic posts) and social media advertising is you are paying to place your content in front of a specific audience. 

There are tons of social media platforms out there, and chances are you’re probably already familiar with most of them because you use them yourself. Major platforms include Facebook, Snapchat, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter. In this article, we’ll be going over advertising on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. 

How It Works

With social media advertising, you’re paying to reach those who don’t currently engage with your page in an effort to gain new followers, boost engagement, or generate leads. Similar to most other digital marketing tactics, with social media advertising, you can target your ideal customer in many different ways. You can target by location, interests, brands that a person already engages with, demographics, and behaviors. On Facebook and Instagram, you can even build custom audiences based on your website traffic, email lists, and so much more.

With this targeted approach, you’re grabbing the attention of users who are interested in the products and services you offer. This approach eliminates the painful issues of spending money on advertising and not knowing who’s seeing your ad. Now let's explore the differences between platforms and how your brand can benefit from each.

Facebook & Instagram

Facebook is still the most popular social media platform, with over 1.4 billion users and over 900 million visits a day. It has the most in-depth data available to target users. For Instagram, it is the most visually engaging platform and commonly used by those ages 18-24. It’s one of the top-growing social media platforms, with more than one billion people using it every month. Since Facebook owns Instagram, campaign creation for both platforms takes place in the Facebook business manager. 

As we mentioned above, you can build custom audiences by layering Facebook’s data with your business data, and creating what is called “lookalike” audiences. Facebook and Instagram advertising are fit for both small and large B2B and B2C companies because of the detailed targeting and different types of advertising options. These options include photo, video, stories, carousel, slideshow, collection, instant experience, messenger, and lead generation ads. With Facebook, you can select objectives such as brand awareness, traffic, engagement, messages, and more. Depending on what you are promoting, you can create an ad to match. It’s also easy to fit this advertising method into your marketing budget, as you set a daily amount and only pay when users click on your ads. Your budget can also easily be adjusted based on your results. 

With so many different options, you can determine the perfect campaign for your goals and target your ideal consumer. Almost any business can benefit from Facebook & Instagram advertising due to its large platform and different targeting options.  


LinkedIn is the top social media platform for B2B companies and is far more business-oriented than Facebook and Instagram. There are approximately 560 million users, and of that, 40 million decision-makers. While its advertising platform is newer and not as in-depth as Facebook and Instagram, it’s continually updating and adding new features often.

Since LinkedIn’s market is so niche, its targeting options are based on an individual’s professional information, such as role, company, industry, and seniority. There are only three types of LinkedIn ads; Sponsored content, sponsored InMail, and text ads. LinkedIn’s advertising options aren’t as in-depth as Instagram and Facebook, but it still has a variety of options for you to reach your ideal customer. 

If you’re a B2B company that focuses on marketing toward business professionals and decision-makers, consider adding LinkedIn advertising to your social media techniques.

Whether it’s Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, or another platform, social media advertising is an excellent way to craft a detailed campaign to reach your target audience. Using social media advertising alongside other digital marketing methods, such as PPC, creates an even more targeted effort to capture qualified leads quickly.

UNANIMOUS is a full-service branding agency based in the heart of the Midwest—Lincoln, Nebraska. They have partnered with clients to develop strong brand alignment through strategic marketing, creative design, engaging websites, and compelling video projects of all sizes. UNANIMOUS is known for collaborative partnerships and works with various clients nationwide. The agency prides itself on rhyme, reason, and results.

Contact UNANIMOUS to learn more: or 402.423.5447