The world of social media advertising leads to more than $31 billion in annual global spending. It’s big business, and there’s a lot at stake when you’re creating advertising content.

When you’re spending a lot on social ads, if you’re not getting much to show for it, of course, it’s going to be problematic.

The goal of ad spending on social platforms is to spend smarter.

From creating the best video ads and paid content to tweaking your audience on a regular basis, there are a lot of things you can do to maximize what you spend on social media. We talk in more detail about the topic below.

Be Extremely Focused In Targeting Your Audience

If you aren’t already putting a big chunk of your time into creating hyper-focused, highly targeted audiences for your ads, then it’s going to mean your results aren’t as good as they could be.

If you’re trying to reach your entire audience, you’re wasting your budget.

Facebook’s ad platform is one of the best to start to develop and reach core audiences. You can actually use some of that information to help you maximize your spending on other platforms too.

You can use interest targeting on Facebook to find people based on the content they’re sharing on their timelines as well as the brands they’re connected to.

Audience behaviors help you target social users based on intentions they might have. The demographic and psychological audience elements help make sure you’re serving the appropriate content to the right people.

You can then save your audiences so that you can optimize settings in the future and reuse these audiences in future campaigns.

When you have custom audiences, it’s also helpful for A/B testing.

Since Facebook owns Instagram, you can use the same targeting on that platform.

If your goal is maximizing your return on investment with your social ads, it’s better to start with a highly targeted but possibly small audience. Then if you’re not getting enough clicks from that, you can start to open up the criteria a bit until you see traction in terms of clicks and conversions.

Starting small is going to help you keep your spending down while you figure out what’s working.

Use Video Ads

Video ads, to put it simply, are more memorable than static images and text. When you use video ads, it can also improve your quality score. When you pay per impression, you can optimize your CPM.

To do this, make sure that you’re focusing on a story and working to elicit an emotional response with your video ads. Don’t just try to make a sale.

Videos that are all about the facts or don’t evoke emotion tend not to generate shares. You want your customers to feel moved and entertained.

You have around 10 seconds with video ads to get the audience’s attention, so make them count and get to the point fast.

Make Sure You’re on the Right Platforms

If you’re not advertising on a platform where you’re targeted audience is actually spending time, then you’re not going to be maximizing your spending, no matter how great your ads are.

Don’t try to run ads on every platform. Find one or two that are a good fit for your business and tend to be most relevant to your particular audience.

Every platform has its own strengths and weaknesses to think about too.

For example, Facebook has billions of monthly users, and it’s a good place for prospecting and retargeting.

At the same time, Facebook’s downside can be that it’s hard to gain visibility because the audience is so enormous.

Instagram is a visually-driven platform where users tend to be highly engaged and also motivated to buy. Pinterest can be good if you want to raise brand awareness and also if you have specific products you hope to promote.

Optimizing Your Quality Score

Quality score is a term that’s known by different names depending on the platform. On Facebook, it’s the quality score. On Twitter, you’ll see it as a Quality Adjusted Bid.

No matter what it’s called, it’s an important metric for optimizing your budget.

When you have a good quality score, it’s going to get you more impressions but at a lower cost for each engagement. If you have a low-quality score, you may incur a higher cost for fewer impressions.

How do you improve your quality score?

The best way is to promote only your best content.

If you aren’t sure, start with posting content organically, and you can A/B test to see what performs best.

Use a Combination of Remarketing and Segmentation

When you remarket on social media, it’s a smart strategy because you’re reaching your website visitors who didn’t already take action on a platform where they’re spending time. It’s possible to double conversion rates with remarketing but at the same time reduce costs overall. You’re targeting a high-value audience—users who have already interacted with you.

There are different ways you can approach remarketing and segmentation, and you’ll have to experiment to find what works best.

For example, one option is to retarget people who ready your blog. At the top of your funnel, typically, a user’s first visit is their only one. With social retargeting, you can get them back into the funnel by grabbing them when they’re on social media.

Another segment to experiment with is retargeting your previous buyers. You can segment these customers through the frequency of their purchases and the last time they bought from you. A third approach is using other channels.

A visitor might already engage with your brand through other paid social campaigns, so you can retarget them to a landing page with an offer that’s higher in the funnel process.

Finally, make sure you’re paying for what’s relevant and matters. Getting a like on social media just isn’t that valuable to you.

You also need to align what you’re paying for with what your goals are.