Paid Versus Organic Marketing: What They Are and How to Use Them

paid marketing

Both paid and organic marketing have a place in your marketing strategy, but what are they and how can you get the most out of both methods? Read on to learn more!

What Are Organic and Paid Marketing?

Organic Marketing

Organic Marketing is less costly than paid (hence the name). Instead of spending lots of money on ads, with organic marketing, you’ll find yourself expanding your social media presence and content marketing (like blog articles, videos, or social media posts). Old-school word-of-mouth falls under this marketing category, as does search engine optimization. Also worth noting is that organic marketing may be lower in cost, but it does take quite a bit of time to work this strategy effectively.

What will organic marketing cost me?

If you choose to incorporate this type of marketing into your strategy, you’ll likely pay for things like blog article writing/editing, video editing, social media post writing and management, and the tools to get them done well. You’ll also (technically) pay with your time, as organic marketing is all about building relationships— making connections on social media, responding to questions on a Facebook post, and creating effective videos that help your audience in some way.

You’ll find that organic marketing, although time-consuming, is necessary in helping you build the relationships that are critical to your long-term success as a business.

What does an organic marketing strategy look like?

People looking to purchase your product or service will likely find you through an internet search, or they could stumble upon you when seeking information. That’s why your blog, your search engine optimization, and your social media are important because they lead people to you through organic means.

organic marketing

To establish effective organic marketing, you’ll want to consider the following methods:

Publish SEO-optimized blog posts on a regular basis. These would not be braggadocious ads designed as articles. Instead, you’d want to write about the topics (related to your business, of course) that your audience cares about. Keep these articles consistent (1 or 2 a week), share them on your social media platforms, and make sure that you engage with the conversation that ensues in the comment thread.

Repurpose your blog articles in your monthly email newsletter so that you can reach people who may not necessarily be scrolling through social media.

When you post content, tag influencers or other brands and then evaluate engagement. Determine which posts bring the most attention and adjust your future content to meet the perceived needs of your audience.

Encourage referrals among your loyal customers. Typically, the recommendation or friends or family goes further than a paid ad.

Paid Marketing

Unlike organic marketing, paid marketing has a higher initial cost. It involves paying for ads, whether on social media or on search engines, and it takes much less time than organic marketing, with typically further reach.

paid marketing

What will paid marketing cost me?

You may be wondering what you’re paying for. Of course, as we talked about above, you’ll be paying to post ads in various places in order to reach as many potential customers as possible.

But there are other costs that are associated with those ads. Think of it this way, for each ad that you post — let’s say, on Facebook, for example — you’ll need to create a product or landing page so that interested customers can make a purchase. Depending on the size of your business, you may have a dedicated staff member or team for these projects. If not, you’ll need to hire a freelancer or company to complete these projects for you.

Also, you’ll need the tools to analyze the results of your ad strategy. Of course, these tools are worth their weight in gold as they allow you to determine your ads’ effectiveness and pivot your strategy if need be.

What does a paid marketing strategy look like?

Unlike the long-game of organic marketing that involves waiting on potential customers to engage with your content, paid marketing is a push — on your part — that gets quick results.

To establish effective paid marketing, you’ll want to consider the following methods:

Push out consistent and optimized ads and determine their effectiveness in helping you reach goals. Adjust ads based on analysis of engagement.

Determine which ads perform the best and put more money into expanding their reach.

At the end of your ad campaign, take another look at ads to determine your ROI, and adjust future ad strategies by using what you’ve learned from this campaign.

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Should you incorporate both paid and organic marketing?

The short answer? Yes. It’s a good idea to diversify your marketing techniques to reach a larger audience and get more predictability in your opportunity pipeline. Each person who engages with your brand is different, and different strategies may work with different folks.

Whether your blog article is the hook or whether your paid social media ad brings in a new customer — either way, you’re making a sale, so incorporate both organic and paid marketing into your strategy and tweak them until they work just right for your business.