Social Advertising - Meaning & Definition

Published in Marketing and Strategy Terms by MBA Skool Team, Last Updated: November 21, 2014

What is Social Advertising?

Social advertising can either refer to advertising about socially relevant issues or leveraging social relationships and social networks to promote a product/service and reach out to its target audience. In the former context, the advertising campaigns are created in public interest. For example, a campaign for road safety, the ‘No crackers Diwali’ campaign to arouse environment consciousness etc. The idea is to create awareness and make a difference. Social ad campaigns strive to educate people about the social issue and to convince them to adopt changes in their lifestyle to build a better future.

Social advertising, in the latter context, is advertising that leverages social information or existing social networks in its communication strategy. Social media has been established as perfect for content marketing that provides value to the customers- allowing blog articles, podcasts, infographics and videos to go viral on the internet! With more than 33% consumers citing social media as a way of discovering new and unconventional products and services, new-age entrepreneurs have skilfully used it to launch their ventures.

“I thought this would be just another coffee ad. But it turned out to be The Best Ad I’ve Seen So Far.”- reads the title of article showcasing the heartwarming Nescafe ad featuring a stand-up comedian. This post was shared on Facebook and twitter thousands of times- a clear display of customer advocacy- pretty much the ultimate goal for every marketing campaign! The idea is to create a strong human chain- exponentially increasing word-of-mouth advertising. While traditional publicity often tends to interrupt, social media goes beyond meaningless exposure to capture a consumer’s cognitive, effective as well as conative characteristics. Such a platform has been able to address everything from inducing trials for a product, breaking away from a negative brand image as well as educating customers about a whole new product concept.


Hence, this concludes the definition of Social Advertising along with its overview.

This article has been researched & authored by the Business Concepts Team. It has been reviewed & published by the MBA Skool Team. The content on MBA Skool has been created for educational & academic purpose only.

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