In the world of paid digital advertising, particularly for technology companies, there are a few things you absolutely must have before you start chucking money at a lineup of paid digital campaigns. Of course, you already know a few of these by heart. You need a killer website – and make it one that is mobile  and search engine optimized, engaging, and unique. You also need to have active social media channels, preferably run by someone who actually understands your business and value proposition, with a growing base of followers you engage with regularly. You also probably need a pro content team driving your message across multiple channels and platforms, and creating integrations with your larger brand identity.

But after that, what comes next for effectively getting your message, new solutions and products, and relevant news out to your growing follower base, while actively recruiting sales leads? Here are five top advertising platforms you should consider – and exactly how they fit in with your overall strategy to build a funnel of quality leads.

1. LinkedIn

LinkedIn is one of the first stops for rising and established technology companies alike, offering a traditional, reliable mechanism for engaging with target audiences and a straightforward business environment in which to do so. LinkedIn is a HUGE pool of professionals and business leaders – over half a billion users and counting. While smaller than Facebook and some others, it’s certainly more in tune with the types of decision makers technology companies want to engage with.

LinkedIn offers the ability to target audiences based upon geographic location, title or position, years of experience, skills, companies they’ve previously worked for, and a litany of other filters. Price minimums start around $10 for an average daily budget, so it’s accessible to a wide array of companies.

Also an important factor: The types of content you can serve up to your targets vary pretty widely across LinkedIn. Elements like sponsored InMail are great for sharing eBooks and white papers. Varying video and text elements, or sponsored content, let you showcase different parts of an overall campaign based upon which group of targets you’re reaching. LinkedIn is also pretty tops for driving event attendance via sponsored content – and with all-virtual events remaining the cornerstone of outreach for the next several months at minimum, you’re going to need a way to recruit for a Zoom networking event at some point, right?

2. Facebook

Oh, how we loathe and love Facebook in equal measure – but for business leaders, even in technology, you simply cannot sleep on Facebook’s ad targeting capabilities. Facebook is a great place to hit CISOs and other top decision makers, in the same place where they post family updates and (cringe) political opinions. Hey, love it or hate it, Facebook allows micro-targeting that is user-friendly and content-driven. Facebook is good place to nail a hypertargeted audience profile – where despite a smaller sample size, you’re far more likely to convert leads into actual sales.

Facebook is key for building customer loyalty over time, and as we know, 2021 will be the year of loyalty driven campaigns and programs, particularly across hard-hit areas of the tech industry. Facebook offers a cost effective route to conversions and a solid “midpoint” between what LinkedIn and more offbeat digital locales like Reddit bring to the table. Finally, if you have a strong content discipline that needs a place to shine, Facebook is where sponsored content can look just like organic content – but with a reach you could never replicate on your own

3. Reddit

Reddit’s ad offerings are unique in their super detailed, subreddit-level targeting capabilities. Reel Axis itself has several subreddits it relies on for unique, laser-focused direction within a community of ideal tech potential clients (one Reel favorite subreddit: “talesfromtechsupport”).

Again – narrowing the pool of who you reach with your solutions means you’re going to have quality of targets, but not necessarily quantity. And that’s okay. Embrace the opportunity to build trust with an authentic group of targets who have true potential for your brand. A note on Reddit: You’re more likely to reach highly technical influencers here – but probably not quite as many decision makers. That said, with a low cost barrier for entry (around $5 average daily spend as a minimum guideline), this is a good way to build an audience and add highly technical, specialized targets to the mix of who you’re reaching.

4. Quora

Quora’s unique “Q&A” style may have half the users of LinkedIn and a fraction of what Facebook offers, but this is a unique platform that actually lets YOUR solution become a literal answer to a potential target’s question. More “show,” less “tell,” Quora opens the door for your content and message to become part of an informative overall read, with ads placed in and around actual answers users seek out.

For true brand development points, your own team can contribute answers for highly relevant queries, bolstering your reputation above and beyond the ads you pay for. Quality content is the key driver of this particular route, so make sure you tailor content specifically for Quora – and look forward to a very intentional target audience and metrics that help you navigate to ensure you’re on the right path with your messaging.

5. AdRoll

AdRoll is highly beneficial in combination with any other platforms you use, as it is key for retargeting customers once they’ve visited your website or social channels. Retargeting is a cost-effective (and well, just plain effective) inclusion in your overall digital advertising posture, because it continually places your solutions and brand in front of targets well after they’ve had their initial engagement with your brand.

It can take up to 5 interactions with a brand or solution to actually realize a potential sale from a qualified target – so not doing retargeting when you’re building an effective digital marketing plan would be silly. As an add-on to any digital marketing plan, you can’t afford to skip this and leave quality prospects untouched after the first initial interaction.

If you find yourself still overwhelmed, take heart – it’s a big, wide world of options for digital marketing platforms, and there’s a solution for just about any and ever company out there, technology or otherwise. If you need a guide to walk you through it and suggest a customized multi-element campaign that will hit all the high points and take away the guess work, well…you know where to find us.

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