Instagram and Facebook now have more than three billion followers combined, and it’s impossible to look at online marketing these days and ignore them. Not only can you use these platforms to advertise the traditional way, but you can also work with influencers with substantial followings who align with your brand. However, both options do have their pros and cons and might work more for a certain type of business/product/budget than another. Let’s take a look at both options and see which one would be the best depending on your business.

social media influencer marketing

Smartdreamers Web Illustration by Ana Hill

The Difference Between the Two Approaches

Social media advertising is when you use ads displayed on social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram. These could be image, text, or video ads. These ads will appear either as direct ads, sponsored posts, in your story timeline, or in your news feed.

Influencer marketing also uses social media most of the time, but specifically refers to when a particular personality is paid to endorse, mention, or even review a product. This can be done through their Instagram posts, personal blog, podcasts, Twitter posts, YouTube channel, or any other social media they might have a presence on.

The Pros and Cons of Social Media Marketing

When it comes to return on investment, social media advertising wins hands down. One of the best things about it is that you’ll only pay for results. It’s also a great option for people who have a small budget but is still scalable. It’s also easier to gauge results by using various analytics tools.

One of the issues with social media marketing, however, is that it can get competitive and complicated at times. If this is your first time dealing with online advertising of any kind, you could get overwhelmed by all the metrics, bidding, keyword research, ad creating, budgeting, targeting, and scheduling. This is why you should consider working with an expert firm who specializes in social media marketing if this is your first time around.

A specialized social media marketing agency will be able to help you find the right social media platform for your product/business, set up a budget, create eye-catching ads that convert, and monitor the results for you. They can also help you with other types of online marketing such as SEO and content marketing, so you can maximize your efforts.

The Pros and Cons of Influencer Marketing

One of the best things about influencer marketing is that it allows you to gain social proof immediately with a large audience you may have had no access to before. Working with the right influencer could send all of your signals through the roof, and could give all your channels a boost, whether it’s your website, mailing list, product page, blog, etc. It can also work wonders for building brand awareness and recognition fast.

The only issue is that the results are not always easy to monitor. There are also cases when the influencer doesn’t like the product. Finding great influencers takes work as well, and good ones aren’t cheap, so unless you have a sure shot, it can be kind of a gamble.


So, what’s the best option? Well, it all depends on what type of results you’re looking for, your budget, and your product. We strongly suggest you look at both options and see which ones would fit your situation the best.


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