As we begin to look to 2016 and think about how internet marketing may continue to evolve, there are a few trends most marketing experts are particularly drawn towards. As well as expecting to see a big diversification in the way social media is used for marketing, with platforms other than Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn beginning to become much more important, and a growth in the cost per action advertising sector, performance marketing is as area many people can see changing for the better and becoming a very appealing option for more businesses.
What Is Performance Marketing?
If you are not familiar with the term, performance marketing is a style of internet marketing where content expected to attract customers is placed on the web and evaluated and paid for by its performance in terms of generating specific actions – normally sales and leads. A subset of performance marketing a lot of people are very familiar with already is marketing through affiliates – where people perform marketing actions like promoting a product on their blog, social media accounts or via email, and make a commission on sales. Big firms like Amazon have been using this approach for a long time, but smaller companies also do very well with it and thanks to improved platforms and networks, like RevContent, created by marketing innovator John Lemp, it is becoming much easier to manage while keeping brand image firmly under control.
Why Performance Marketing Is Appealing in an Ever More Ad Saturated Web Environment
If you are an advertiser or marketer, you have probably seen worrying stats around the number of advertising messages the average internet user sees every day. Considering promotional messages in their email, on their social networks, their search results and dotted around the websites they visit, it is estimated that most of us see hundreds of promotional things every day. Add to that other forms of advertising in print, on TV, and all around us, and it is clear that just placing an ad is no longer enough – being seen is not even enough to create brand awareness anymore, because how can somebody be expected to form a relationship, mentally or financially, with every business name they see when they see hundreds per day?
Performance marketing is not just about getting online ads seen, but, as the name suggests, having advertising content that performs. Advertisers want that assurance – that the messages they are putting out there are being placed in a relevant and meaningful way, so they are going to be acted upon.
Why Performance Marketing is Easy to Manage
Another appealing aspect of performance marketing is that it can be very quick to place messages and get new ads onto relevant channels. This makes it very possible to manage advertising almost in real time, taking advantage of trending news, topics or concepts relevant to your products or offers and getting your latest deals and offerings in front of potential customers rapidly. Thanks to platforms like RevContent, this can all be overseen and implemented with a matter of a few clicks, giving advertisers the kind of control earlier incarnations of performance marketing just didn’t afford them.
Additionally, because performance marketing has very clear goals, it is easy to measure when these have been met. This makes quantifying things like ROI extremely easy. Advertising online with vaguer goals can be hard to measure – you may know how many impressions an ad has had on Facebook, for example, but you can’t assume everyone who had it loaded on their page even read it, let alone formed a positive opinion of your brand because of it. If you are geared only towards leads, sales or other distinct actions, you can tell in black and white terms whether your current tactics are effective, and of course, you only pay when the ads really do perform.
While performance marketing is by no means new, it is undergoing something of a revolution and is becoming much more viable for smaller businesses, as well as having many of its earlier drawbacks removed. This means that as we head into 2016, many businesses who are looking for a highly effective, highly measurable and transparent way to run campaigns are likely to start seeing it as a true marketing essential. Don’t be surprised if, if you had never heard of performance marketing until today, you could be a big advocate and user of these approaches by the end of the next 12 months!