The Emergence of Pinterest and Instagram as Must-Have SMB Ad Tools

At this point in time, every SMB advertiser knows the importance of social media. Facebook has become a crucial part of any company’s web presence, and Twitter is growing in importance. Some may even choose to leverage those platforms’ paid ad models to help expand their audience beyond their existing customers.

Marketers have gotten used to Facebook and Twitter, and now have more social media options than before, which is good news for SMBs. This summer alone, Pinterest and Instagram launched advertising APIs that will help brands better identify their prospects on the platforms. And while these new channels aren’t emphasizing SMBs at the moment, their tools will be available to smaller advertisers soon enough. It’s time for SMB marketers to look into these channels and learn how to leverage them within their overall ad plans.

Small retail brands have been extremely successful taking advantage of Pinterest and Instagram profile pages to build awareness and a following. So while features like buy buttons are slowly rolled out for major advertisers, all SMBs that sell directly to consumers, whether a retailer or manufacturer, must have a presence on these two channels.

More importantly, SMBs need to observe how these channels work, and what kinds of consumers are in touch with them. Both are visual, relying on deeply engaging image, photo and video content to reach consumers. With that in mind, it makes sense to use these channels as real-time focus groups on creative, and use those learnings to shape future campaigns. Furthermore, SMB advertisers can learn valuable information about the demographics and interests of their prospective customers, and then apply those findings to their marketing across channels.

As the Instagram and Pinterest platforms continue to evolve and expand their scale, AffinityX will keep a close watch to ensure we can help our clients bring their SMB customers into these exciting new channels.