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Ultimate list of social media advertising tools

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This week, Jay Baer predicted that agency fees for social media will be $1.5 billion within five years. You might assume that’s solely the cost of managing and monitoring social media conversations—but there’s money to be made in social media advertising management, too.

If you’re an agency in this space, you’ll need effective social media advertising tools. Tools that help you maximize leads and returns from your clients’ social media ad spend. Tools that make your work more efficient. Tools that make reporting simple.

Here’s a survey of what’s available now. Many tools are still proprietary, e.g., LinkedIn has its own advertising network. We’re sure there’s more to come.

Facebook advertising

With more than 800 million users, Mark Zuckerberg’s brain child is not only a social phenomenon—but an online advertising one as well. Yet, try to manage your campaigns without using a 3rd-party tool and you’re likely to lose time, money and your mind.

  • Alchemy
    As one of Facebook’s original Ads API partners, Alchemy was the first in this space, allowing them to market, develop and innovate ahead of competition. In addition, social advertising is their sole focus, which means uncompromising expertise. With a license you get a 14-day trial. After that, you pay 2-5% of your media spend.
  • AdParlor
    Just because they boast large clients like Groupon, Sega and Ubisoft, AdParlor is suitable for the one-man or one-woman shop, too. Pricing models include install, cost per acquisition and Fan.”As consumer use of and time spent on social media sites increases, the opportunities for effective advertising become more attractive to companies in search of customers to connect with.” Lee Odden
  • Clickable
    Their award winning Facebook suite allows you to manage massive Facebook advertising campaigns, thus cutting down on time while improving ROI. A TechCrunh40 finalist and Ernest and Young “Entrepreneur of the Year.” Call for pricing.
  • Marin Software
    Basic package starts at a minimum $499/month spend, of which Marin gets 5%. But you get good bang for your buck: audience segmentation, targeting, image library, creative rotation and engagement tracking.
  • Keybroker Social
    This Facebook ad tool suite is unique in that it offers a free package. You get only 15 ads a day, but hey, not everybody needs 10,000 impressions a month to survive.

Other social media channels

Yes, Facebook is a behemoth in the social media world. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t diversify your social media advertising portfolio. There are other significant avenues out there that can provide you targeted audiences. Here are the other major players.

  • LinkedIn DirectAds
    DirectAds is LinkedIn’s own advertising network and allows you to target over 90 million professionals, including all C-levels at the Fortune 500. Ads are your typical short text with image and you can get started for $10.
  • YouTube Video Targeting Tool
    As the second most used search engine and online video advertising revenue expected to hit 5.7 billion by 2014, YouTube presents a huge opportunity for exposure. Create ads to appear beside or in videos. Run by Google, of course.
  • StumbleUpon Paid Discovery
    With millions of “stumbles” a day, StumbleUpon offers Paid Discovery for brands to have their content integrated into the stream of sites that users stumble to, based on their interests. Advertisers can target by interest, location and demographics. From $.05 to $.25 per visitor.
  • Twitter Promoted
    Newer to the advertising game is Twitter’s promotional arm, including promoted tweets – tweets labeled as promoted and broadcast to a larger audience, promoted trends, which appear at the top of the Trending Topics list on Twitter, and promoted accounts, in which Twitter suggests accounts that users don’t currently follow
  • Reddit
    Reddit allows brands to buy space in the sponsored links section of the social news website. In keeping with its younger, tech-savvier community, the site helpfully provides a cartoon by The Oatmeal to explain its advertising possibilities.
  • Digg Ads
    Digg offers a spot for web surfers to uncover new, interesting content, and its advertising options include sponsored article placements, display ads and content ads.

Other social media advertising tools

  • Flite
    This tool allows you to edit ads in real time, and then spread that message across your social network. For example, say foot traffic to your store slows one afternoon. You create a promotion and edit into your commercial video, then post on your Twitter stream. About $1 CPM.
  • Kontera
    Through Kontera’s “Social Boost” service, readers on thousands of different web properties are led to a brand’s social media account by hovering over a highlighted word in a blog post or article.

Your turn

What am I missing? Are there social media advertising tools I don’t know about? Share your thoughts in the comments. Brutal and all.

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