Pay Per Click v Pay Per ImpressionIn the world of social advertising, which is using Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or Google Adwords, there is always the debate as to whether you should use the Pay-Per-Click (PPC) or Pay-Per-Impression (PPM) method of payment for your ads.

And, it is an excellent question with no certain answer.  But to help us decide, it is important to first know the difference between the two methods.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC)

PPC requires that you pay for every click on your advertising link, regardless of whether the person clicking the link purchases or takes the required action.  Most services implement an auction for the cost per click, usually ranging around $2.50 – $5.00 per click.

As for the different social networks, I have found that Facebook is the lowest in the PPC category and that LinkedIn tends towards to have a higher cost per click.  Google and Twitter tend to fall somewhere in the middle.

Pay-Per-Impression (PPM)

PPM is very similar to PPC, however, you will pay for each impression (usually based upon 1000 impressions) that your ad receives.  There needs to be no action taken by the person seeing the ad for there to be an associated cost.

Which should I use?

Over the years, I have found that each method is well served for specific tasks.  If you are looking to use an ad strictly for branding purposes, and want as many people to see the ad as possible, a PPM strategy is probably the way to go.  It will afford you the largest audience and most networks will optimize the number of times your ad will be seen by your target audience.  If you are requesting that potential customers take some action for some type of reward (Click here for a coupon), then I would suggest using the PPC method, as it will better serve your target audience.

Regardless of which method you choose to implement for your advertising campaign, it is important to realize that no social marketing campaign can operate on a “set it and forget it” schedule.  You need to make sure to optimize your ad for its click-through ratio as well as for the number of clicks v. the number of impressions to ensure that you are reaching your target audience.

Have you been advertising on social networks?  Which method works for you, PPC or PPM?  Any secrets to share?  Feel free to sound off in the comments.

Happy advertising!



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Pay Per Click or Pay Per Impression?  Do You Know the Difference?

5 Steps to Pay Per Click Advertising That Works

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