role of organic vs paid social media

Understand The Role Of Organic vs. Paid Social Media – That You Must Know!

Have you been trying to contemplate and understand the role of organic vs. paid social media? Don't worry, we have got you. In this article, we will help you understand their respective roles with what really these terms mean and how effective they are, and what could they result for your business and promotions.

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The way businesses sell their brands has changed as social media has evolved. Whenever it comes to using social media for business, nevertheless, the biggest question is either to concentrate on paid social media advertising or organic social media marketing. One must employ both of them as the solution. Both are critical to the success of your company.

With 3.79 billion users on a daily basis, social media is an excellent tool to reach out to a company’s target demographic. It’s a fact that social media platforms are demanding businesses to invest in sponsored social media in order to reach their target audiences and expand beyond their present followers. It’s critical to realize that both organic and paid social media are required for real achievement.

Both organic social media and paid social media come under the same roof of advertising and promotions. But at the very same time, they have their own advantages, which one should be conscious of in their marketing strategies.

In this detailed article, you’ll also understand their pros and cons, helping you analyze which one is better and suitable for your business venture.

organic vs paid social media meme
Credits: Adespresso

Especially after the Covid-19 pandemic, digital marketing has surpassed traditional marketing. People now would first check a product’s price online and then evaluate the prices compared to traditional shops. Hence, this is where the doors of organic media marketing and paid media marketing open and come into the picture.

Both organic media marketing and paid media marketing can be used for your advertisements and promotions. Sometimes one could use either of them or use both simultaneously for better results. But understanding how to do it matters the most for gaining effective results.

So what really are organic social media and paid social media? Let now dive into this comprehensive article for your better understanding of these terms.

Let’s begin!

What Exactly Is Organic Social Media?

Any material or content which is free –  posts, photographs, videos, memes, or stories that all people on social media publish on their feeds are referred to as organic social media.

This is an excellent approach to attract potential clients without having to pay for advertising space. Organic social media helps you to establish and connect with both new and existing clients, whether you produce and publish blogs, share helpful pieces, or share other people’s postings.

Paid social media postings on social media have become more popular as a means of attracting new customers. With the strength of sponsored promotions, businesses may better reach their existing audiences and reach out to new ones. But one should never consider organic media marketing less effective. Organic content, despite the growing popularity of paid social media, is still crucial. To sustain a strong social network, brands must strike a fine balance between paid and organic means. 

Learning how organic growth may benefit your business and assist you in attracting and retaining clients is extremely important in this digital marketing.

It’s also crucial to keep in mind that your organic social media postings combine to develop a social network. They help potential consumers decide whether or not to do trade with you by validating your brand–and more and more people are turning to social media to learn about businesses.

organic social media
Credits: Leoniconsultinggroup

Whenever you post organically on your social media platforms, you open the doors of an organic reach. This means that a part of your following is organic and is not simply bots. Having and retaining an organic following is crucial as they are meant and expected to stay connected with your business and services for long. 

Your organic following will also help you to get exposed to a new type of audience as they tend to share your posts and consider the relevance and how will would your post will benefit their friends, family, and relatives. And if you are successfully adding hashtags that are relevant and trendy, you will organically get exposed to individuals who follow the same hashtags. This is why hashtags are extremely necessary and should be the shadows of what your services and goods are.

Organic social media is generally used because;

It assists you in customer support – Being organically present in digital marketing is essential as it helps in better customer support and increases the trust and credibility of your brand name.

Share engaging, instructive, or inspirational material to build consumer connections – Being organic means sharing what is required to be shared. Your social media manager will be aware of your audience’s tastes and preferences and will plan the posts accordingly. This way, you build consumer connections abundantly.

Engage clients at various points of the purchasing process – Flexibility comes into the picture whenever you are organically posting your posts. You can connect and touch your customer’s buying decisions whenever possible with organic social media.

Create a brand voice and personality – If you choose organic social media, you are adding up to your band’s voice and personality. Despite results that might take a little time with organic social media if compared to paid social media, at the end of the day, you are establishing a virtual personality in your audience’s minds. This is you retain customers and increase your brand’s goodwill.

Benefits of Organic Social Media:

1. Organic content builds Your Business

Consumers that connect with companies organically through sponsored promotions should be rewarded with a favorable experience. Why would you want a page that never posted anything interesting or important? Why would a company spend money on recruiting customers just to lose them due to poor content?

Your organic online presence is comparable to your website experience in several ways. Consumers will bounce if your website is not up to par. Customers will unfollow, unlike, or ignore you if your organic material is inadequate.

2. Validity is boosted by organic social.

Users frequently visit the brand’s social media page after seeing an advertisement on social media. You’re most certainly missing in followers and engagement if you don’t have an organic social media plan to supplement sponsored efforts. People will visit your social profile to check what others are saying about your company, so an organic plan may help with word-of-mouth marketing. With 89 per cent of people trusting online reviews written by other consumers as much as personal recommendations, and 81 percent of people saying they’re influenced by what their friends post on social media, an organic social strategy is critical to establishing a positive brand perception and share-of-voice. If you don’t have an organic plan in place that strives to provide material on a regular basis, communicate with users, and respond to consumer delights and concerns, the customers you’re targeting through advertising efforts may doubt your brand’s legitimacy.

3. Once followed, organic social media is the only method to actually interact with potential clients.

While sponsored efforts serve to raise brand awareness, organic efforts let you engage with your audience on a deeper level, which may have long-term advantages. Paid marketing has a lead-to-close rate that is 100 percent greater than social media marketing. One of the reasons organic social media marketing is so powerful is that it allows companies and customers to learn about one other at the same time, as both brands and consumers publish and share material that is essential or relevant to them.

Furthermore, if potential buyers who discovered your company through sponsored advertising have questions, they may contact you directly via social media. Using sponsored strategies also allows you to learn more about the audience that responds best to your messages. You’ll be better equipped to promote an organic message that corresponds with your target audience’s interests and demographics if you grasp these approaches and their effects.

4. Organic social media is a low-cost, long-term answer.

When it comes to marketing your brand on social media, no matter how big or little your company is or how much money you have, everyone starts at the same place. To be effective on social media, you don’t need a big budget; the most effective social media accounts for companies are those that generate the smartest, most transparent, and attention-grabbing material – not necessarily the largest spenders. In this approach, your social media strategy’s reach and success are only limited by your company’s and marketers’ inventiveness.

Engaging with your social media audience in natural ways, such as answering questions, offering or reacting to criticism, or just initiating a conversation about your business, makes it simpler for your company to build a solid, long-term reputation.

5. You’ll always be behind if you don’t start your organic growth immediately.

If you haven’t begun organizing your organic social content yet, you’re already behind the curve: 91 percent of companies are active on several social media platforms, 65 million businesses have active Facebook Pages, and 84 percent of B2B marketers use social media in some capacity. The silver lining is that there are a plethora of great social media tales and campaigns out there that you can investigate and learn from to assist your company in developing a smart social media strategy before diving in.

Because social media is such a powerful platform for people to decide which companies to support, your social media presence should not only appeal to your present audience but also look and sound like your commercials.

Few guidelines for organic social media

1. Strengthen your identity

When it comes to brands, organic content is a fantastic way to promote it.  Try analyzing what your customers know and feel about you, and how they comprehend you. Make sure to check if your posts have everything your targeted audience is looking for. Add value to your posts by highlighting your values. 

2. Limit your advertising

Save all the money and your sales pitch some other time. Rather, let your brand speak for itself. With your organic material, you may tell tales, educate, and inspire others. However, these commercials should be interspersed with excellent information that helps viewers learn to know, trust, and engage with you. This is very essential as customers can sense the brand’s reliability and credibility time-to-time.

3. Enhance your individuality

Make use of the chance to show off who you are while avoiding sales chatter and marketing. Share the passions of your brand and discuss your future plans with a little wit. Try standing out from your rivals by providing what they are not. Try connecting with your customers in a unique and humourous way as if they remember it always for a lifetime.

4. Post what’s relevant and what’s needed

Organic posts are posts you deliver as per the demand and taste of your customers. Make a plan of plan with scheduling your posts at the right time. Winning the interests and attention of your customers at the right moment and at the right time is the key. Post what’s required by analyzing what your customers are looking for. Settle only for the good.

Now, what exactly is paid social media?

On the other hand, paid media, often known as paid media advertising, is an outbound marketing approach that encompasses any marketing campaigns that you pay for. Paid media encompasses things like paid search advertisements, retail ads, display ads, social media ads, and more in the digital world.

Here are 2 examples of paid social media;

paid social media
paid social media

All of these advertisements are designed to put you in front of the right audience at the right moment. You may segment and arrange these advertisements effectively to attract impressions from your desired demographic if you have everything planned.

Paid media is a component of a brand’s overall strategy to boost traffic, sales, and conversions via clicks, and hence money. Media is an important part of a digital campaign for brand recognition and profit growth. Media serves as the conduit and real estate via which the brand message is communicated and promoted. 

Paid, earned, and owned media are the three categories of media.

  • Paid Media – It’s all about buying ads on other websites to get your marketing message in front of audiences you’ve never reached before. This may be done through social media, websites, blogs, and newspapers, among other platforms.
  • Owned Media – It is, as the name implies, the positioning of your brand in media platforms owned and controlled by your company. This covers all of your assets and own resources, such as websites, forums, and emails.
  • Earned Media – It is the room or exposure your brand obtains as a result of credibility, recognition, and word of mouth, also referred to as free media. You obtain ‘organic’ publicity without having to pay for ad space. This comprises press mentions, social media recognition, influencer content contributions, search engine optimization ranks, and more.

Learn all about paid social media by joining the best online digital marketing course available in the market.

Paid Pricing Models Types

Paid advertisements come in a variety of forms, each with its own set of aims and outcomes, as well as a variety of payment mechanisms. 

Below mentioned are a few commonly used models;

  • Cost Per Click (CPC) 

The Cost Per Click (CPC) model is one in which a sum is paid for each click received, regardless of the number of views or impressions. Automatic and manual bidding options are available for this performance-based statistic, allowing you to set a budget or limit your maximum bid amount.

  • Cost Per Mille (CPM) 

The approach in which a company pays per thousand ad views is known as Cost Per Thousand/Mille (CPM). This is true for banner advertisements, native advertising, and other forms of display advertising. 

  • CPC vs. CPM

CPC and CPM are the two most popular pricing methods today. The clicks and leads/conversions generated are what CPC is all about. It is performance-based and focuses on bidding. Conversion, direct traffic, and search marketing are all aided by it.

Benefits of Paid Social Media

1. Customer Retention Increases

A quality strategy does more than just drive traffic and convert leads. What you want to focus on is the long-term impact on viewers. Businesses that wish to establish a great brand must guarantee that their customers can relate to it. The articles you write and the ads you execute should convey a story about your company. The reason for this is simple: the longer your Impression lasts, the more unforgettable you become in the thoughts of customers. With the right social media advertising strategies, you may not only sell to clients but also get them to ask for more. Even clients who don’t convert right now will have your brand stored in their minds, ready to show up when they need your goods or services.

2. Extend Your Reach

Advertising on social media provides your company with immediate exposure. Because posts from friends and family increasingly take precedence, organic reach for marketers on social media is constantly falling — particularly on Facebook. Because of the enormous amount of postings, engaging with your audience is statistically unlikely.

Paid adverts, on the other hand, are guaranteed to appear in the user’s feed. Despite the bigger social platform’s cacophony, this allows you a direct window to increase leads, website traffic, and purchases.

Find out where your target demographic spends the most time online to maximize your reach.

paid social media - zeptonow

3. Boost Your Targeting

Paid social media advertising allows you ultimate control over who sees your ad. Each platform has a variety of targeting options. You may select psychographic characteristics such as interests, hobbies, personality types, and more in addition to basic user demographics.

Develop a lookalike audience that resembles your existing contacts or upload a list of contacts to target. This is an effective technique to simultaneously broaden and engage your desired audience.

You may also retarget Facebook users who have already visited your website. Install the Facebook retargeting pixel on your site, and prior visitors will see advertisements for your business in their News Feed.

4. Increase Brand Recognition

Advertising on social media is a low-cost approach to getting your company noticed. People will begin to identify your company if it frequently shows in the news stream. Recognition will boost your reputation while also encouraging interaction and purchases.

Consider the fact that 80% of Instagram users follow at least one company. At least 30% of people in this majority group have purchased a product they found on Instagram.

5. Make the Most of Content Marketing

The greatest approach to disseminating your finest material is through social media. More than 72 percent of consumers follow a business because they’re interested in its product or service, according to Sprout Social. Encourage your followers’ interest with instructive material that can turn them into qualified leads. Ads for content can help you generate online traffic, increase social media engagement, and enhance the ROI of your content marketing, in addition to coaxing leads through the funnel.

Few guidelines for organic social media

1. Begin with Your Goal in Mind

When you initially start creating sponsored advertising with Instagram, Facebook, or LinkedIn, you’ll be asked what your goal is. Your ad possibilities will be influenced by your decision, so think carefully. Understand who your targeted audience is and get started with that.

2. Select the Most Effective Ad Formats

Multiple ads and contents directed at the same objective make up a social media marketing campaign. That implies you may use a variety of social media ad styles to achieve your goal.

Each ad style has its own strengths, so you’ll want to pick the perfect one to get the best results from your sponsored campaign. Make sure to look concisely professional. Try standing out from whatever your rivals are doing already.

3. Make a Budget

After you’ve decided on your goal and social media platform, you’ll be able to see if there is a minimal ad budget that you must spend. This sum might be set per day, per click, or per impression. Social media advertising is a bidding war. You compete for the greatest ad spots on people’s social media feeds, sites, and stories. If you win the auction, you’ll be charged that amount for every subsequent click, view, like, impression, message open, app download, and so on.

So select your ad campaigns accordingly, and make the best out of every penny spent.

4. Improve

There are several things that might affect the success of your advertisements. Seasonality, world events, time of day, new competition entering and departing the market, successful creativity, social network changes, audience targeting, and, of course, money may all affect your perceived Cost-per-Click (CPC) or any other statistic you’re tracking for particular outcomes. Try improving and learning after everything you have missed or did not achieve.

Organic Social Media vs. Paid Social Media

organic social media vs paid social media

Organic traffic is a long-term strategy. It needs time and patience to drive better results. But the impact here stays for long.  To score well, marketers must generate fresh content with relevant keywords on a fast-loading and accessible website which is responsive as well. Also crucial are engagement, links, and domain authority. When it comes to organic vs. paid traffic, though, both offer benefits and drawbacks. (As mentioned above)

Paid traffic is another viable alternative since it is generated by business users clicking on paid advertisements. Other smart methods include sending advertising to a specific landing page with a special offer or a conversion form for gathering data from visitors.

A pay-per-click approach aims to get a website to appear in a search term that contains one or more keywords that the company is bidding on. Prior to purchasing advertisements, you must first choose keywords, create eye-catching ads, and set a budget.

Both organic social media and paid social media are important for a business. If both are applied, examined, and executed well, results might end up being mind-blowing. For this to happen, it is important to note everything mentioned in this article. Make sure if you have a social media manager, he/she is managing the contents and postings thoroughly without a flaw. 

Social media is the new era of advertising and promotions.

How to make a paid and organic social media campaign work together?

Now that we know how both organic social media and paid social media are important in their own places and with their own characteristics and abilities, it is a prerequisite to making them work together if you are wanted to grow higher in your business game. Once you start combining these two together, we’re certain that the sky’s the limit.

Let’s understand how can you do them simultaneously;

1. Analyze Paid Ads Results in Order to Implement Organic Strategy

Any company wants to get the most out of its advertising budget, and it might be discouraging to find that you’re paying money on sponsored content but not getting any results. This could be depressing.

The goal is to successfully measure performance, which in this case means studying and analyzing data from the advertising themselves and applying that data to improve your organic social media approach.

This might involve analyzing which sorts of paid social media advertising are the most effective, experimenting with different ad copy to determine what connects with your consumers the most, and comparing how data differs across social media platforms.

2. Use the insights of the organic audience to reach out paid audience

Paid social ad campaigns might be challenging to target the proper audience due to social media platforms’ algorithms. Organic audience data can assist advertisers to get in front of their target customers in this situation.

Gender, age, region, and hobbies are examples of organic data that may not be available through ad managers. Once you have the information, you can put it to good use by determining the optimum audience for your advertising and determining whether there are any demographic disparities between those who click on organic postings and those who purchase from an ad.

3. Encourage your audience to engage with organic content.

Your sponsored advertisements must correspond to your social media posts in order to be effective. Where is where the relevance of your content comes into the picture. As a result, marketing material that has previously connected with your audience might be advantageous.

Furthermore, this method may help you get in front of your consumer on a more constant basis, and they will be able to recognize the value in what you have to offer because it is something they desire.

4. Make use of retargeting advertising strategies.

If customers are visiting your social accounts and not making any moves, it’s reasonable to assume they’ll need something more appealing to persuade them to do so. In this scenario, using retargeting advertisements that accomplish just that might be a fantastic idea.

Facebook advertising, for example, include a feature called Facebook Custom Audiences. By entering clients’ email addresses and targeting those folks with customized Facebook adverts, you may micro-segment your audience depending on your current client database.

5. Improve Your Strategies Performing A/B Testing

A/B testing is an excellent approach to improving your current strategy. There are several advantages to employing this method, including the ability to test two alternative versions of content to discover which one appeals to your target audience the most, as well as knowing which one has the most engagement or conversions.

This way, you analyze what is better and more profitable.


Both organic social media and paid social media are important and essential for your growth and profit. Now that you have understood both their advantages, it shall be easier for you to examine what’s better for your business at the moment.

We hope the above-emphasized article has been fruitful for your time and knowledge. What do you feel regarding the same?

Do let us know in the comments section below.

Thanks for reading!

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Digital Scholar

Digital Scholar is a premier agency-styled digital marketing institute in India. Which offers an online digital marketing course and a free digital marketing course worldwide to elevate their digital skills and become industry experts. Digital Scholar is headed by Sorav Jain and co-founder Rishi Jain, who are pioneers in the field of digital marketing. Digital Scholar’s blogs touch upon numerous aspects of digital marketing and help you get intensive ideas of different domains of digital marketing.

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