The Top 4 Barriers to Unifying Your Search and Social Ad Strategies

August 30, 2018

Omnichannel marketing causes many brands to look at their programs as a set of disparate disciplines—SEM, SEO, content marketing, social marketing, email marketing, etc. And, each discipline often has its own department, budget, and strategy, even though customers only see a single brand.

Advertisers are increasingly coming to understand that a good way to tackle the challenges inherent in omnichannel marketing is through a unified strategy, one that combines search and social into a single blueprint. Here are what our survey of digital advertisers identified as the top obstacles to overcome in reaching the goal of an integrated program.

1. Search and social silos

Separate departments for search and social mean separate staff, managers, budgets, and strategies—resulting in teams that rarely communicate, even when they might be sitting right next to each other in the office. This lack of collaboration can result in mismatched or conflicting campaign messaging, and lead to internal battles for shared resources, such as IT, engineering, budget, or creative.

2. Attribution ‘turf wars’

When search, social, and other marketing channels operate in silos, it creates organizational knowledge gaps and makes it more difficult to agree on how to attribute credit to each touchpoint on the conversion path. Social tends to benefit from a first-click attribution model because it’s typically used to create awareness at the top of the funnel.

A last-click model, on the other hand, will provide search with most of the credit for a conversion. Changing to an attribution model that applies equal or partial credit to each channel could threaten each department’s budget or organizational standing.

3. Lack of a shared budget

As the saying goes, ‘follow the money.’ Successful paid search and paid social marketers operating in different departments and with separate budgets are understandably protective of their dollars.

Search may enjoy the largest share of the digital marketing budget. However, social is increasingly carving out a larger share. As long as search and social strategies and campaigns are isolated from each other, the competition for budget dollars will continue.

4. Incompatible metrics and goals

Search and social marketers each speak their own language around key performance metrics (KPIs) and campaign goals. A social brand awareness campaign may use Facebook to increase the number of followers or the length of time followers spend on the brand’s Facebook page.

Conversely, an AdWords campaign may seek more conversions by increasing click-throughs to the website or improving the cost per click (CPC) of specific keywords. It’s difficult to measure a unified search and social campaign’s ROI when metrics don’t line up.

Learn more

To learn the emerging best practices that brands are using to solve these challenges, download Unifying Your Search & Social Ad Strategies. Or, if you’d like to learn how Marin can help, request a demo today.

omnichannel marketing

Maria Breaux

Marin Software
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