Trends in Social Advertising: More Marketers Investing in YouTube

The world of social advertising has grown significantly in the last few years. New platforms have been introduced (hello, Reddit and Quora) and new updates/features have made placing ads on social easier, more effective, and more profitable. As a result, we’re seeing more marketers increase their investments in social advertising.

In this post, you’ll find stats from Hanapin Marketing’s (we’re a digital agency that places paid ads on search, social, display, programmatic, etc.) newly released report called The 2019 State of Paid Social. The data was gathered in partnership with TubeBuddy, Quora, Pattern89, and Tailwind. It represents 14 different verticals from hundreds of marketers, including feedback from both brands and agencies.

In 2017, 72% of marketers were spending less than 15% of their advertising budget on social ads. This year, that’s down to 59%. 9% of those marketers are spending MORE THAN 50% of their ad budget on social ads specifically. That’s huge! Marketers are most likely turning to social because CPCs (cost-per-clicks) in search continue to climb year over year. You can get more bang for your buck in social, so the investment increase makes sense.

Here’s a look at which social platforms marketers are currently investing in:

While Facebook is still King (for now at least - 26% of marketers plan to spend less in the platform in the coming year) when it comes to ad dollars, we’re seeing more investments in platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and Quora. In fact, the number of marketers investing in Quora has grown NEARLY 4X SINCE LAST YEAR! The platform has rolled out 5 betas just in the last 8 months and shows no signs of slowing down. If you’re looking for a new platform to test, this is a good one to try. (Sidenote - Hanapin just launched a Quora campaign for our new initiative, Hero Academy. With a $500 investment, you can test out the platform and you get to meet with a Quora Ads specialist to make sure your campaign is in tip top shape. A win-win in our eyes!)

YouTube is also getting some well-deserved attention now. 51% of marketers are planning to spend more in the platform next year and 65% of agencies plan to pitch YouTube to their clients. 

Google’s recent moves to make the platform more direct response-focused has had a positive impact on adoption. For example, lead form ads on YouTube now allow you to generate leads from videos just like Facebook does. One of the most attractive parts about YouTube ads is that most of the formats are low risk, high reward. A skipped ad can still boost engagement (and skippable video ads are the most effective ad format according to our research).


Here’s a look at how marketers will change their budget in the next 12 months:

The investment in Twitter was a little surprising to us at first. Typically, Twitter hasn’t been a favorite among marketers or very effective. But the platform has been redesigning for a better user experience. And there’s the argument that the investment could be that marketers are diversifying their investments in social. Meaning that it may not be that Twitter is more appealing than Pinterest or Quora or Linkedin, but rather advertisers are looking to spread their dollars across a wider variety of social platforms to mitigate the risk of a sudden deterioration from a giant like Facebook. 

The State of Paid Social contains much more than what you see above. It’s a comprehensive breakdown of social budgets, what ad formats are the most effective in each platform, what challenges other marketers are facing, what the next big thing in social is, and many other great insights that can be used as benchmarks for your brand and guidance on your marketing strategy for 2019 and 2020.

The data for the State of Paid Social was collected during a survey that ran publicly during the month of May and includes feedback from hundreds of marketers in 14 different verticals. The Report covers the following social platforms: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat, Quora, and Reddit. 

Get the Full Report >>

Jamie Newton
Sr. Demand Generation Manager
Hanapin Marketing

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