With an unparalleled daily active user base, Facebook has enjoyed over a decade of data collection, providing brands with the reach and targeting capabilities they've always dreamed of. But the days of Facebook being the #1 player in the social advertising space are long gone.
As more and more brands flocked to Facebook to leverage their ad platform, the implications have been detrimental to all. The costs of ads have skyrocketed as more brands have competed for space in the news feed. It's an auction system, after all. And organic reach is now essentially nonexistent. Don't even get me started on the data mining. Unless you're Gryzzl and Leslie Knope exists in this universe, it's not cool.
So, what about the other platforms? Have we forgotten about Pinterest, Twitter, LinkedIn, or YouTube? And what about content syndication platforms like Outbrain? Their targeting capabilities are nothing to laugh at, and the costs are pretty similar. (LinkedIn is the only exception here, as the cost to advertise starts at $10 per day minimum, but this is really the only platform where you're guaranteed to reach the C-suite or industry-specific employees if you're in the B2B space.)
How do I know? Well I've used them all.
As a social media manager, I've always been keen on testing other platforms and their targeting capabilities. Like that old adage says: don't put all your eggs in one basket. I was pleasantly surprised by most of them, too, which is why I almost always recommend another platform when it makes sense in a comprehensive social media advertising strategy.
If you're a Facebook ad user, you'll know one of the best features of Facebook is the pixel. Well, Pinterest, Twitter and LinkedIn have pixels, too, so you can track conversions just as you would on Facebook.
Pinterest is hands-down the second best choice, in my opinion. You can upload custom audiences like email lists AND create Lookalike audience, while bidding on either keywords or interests/demographics. So if you're selling wine, you could target people who search for "wine" or you could target people interested in wine. Ah-mazing.
Instagram may even still be a good option if you don't have a super-specific target audience. Although the ad platform is technically managed through Facebook, you can get more cost-effective results and reach if you advertise natively on Instagram within the app.
So if you're relying only on Facebook ads to reach your audience, it's time to re-think your strategy. After all, Facebook is getting rid of a lot of useful audience targeting options in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Don't get left behind.