If you run a Facebook page, you’ve seen it…
That pretty little button that tells you something along the lines of “boost your post and reach 50,000 people in your area for just £4.”
50,000 people for just £4?! Sounds amazing, doesn’t it? Even if you had a 0.1% conversion rate, you’d acquire 50 brand new customers! To reach that same amount of people through traditional TV, print or radio ads, you’d need to sell an organ or at least remortgage your home.
That’s why Facebook’s ‘boost post’ option is oh-so tempting; it’s cheap as chips, better value than traditional marketing and it takes just two seconds to do. Coupled with the fact that Facebook’s organic reach is dwindling and EVERYONE seems to be experimenting with Facebook ads, you may as well give it a go – even just the once to see what happens, right?
Well no, actually. Boosting your Facebook post is a really stupid idea.
If you’re considering hitting ‘boost post’ DON’T DO IT. And if you’ve done it before – DON’T DO IT AGAIN. It is a gigantic waste of money and you’re essentially being conned.
Don’t get me wrong – I love Facebook advertising.
In fact, it’s actually one of my favourite parts of being a digital marketer and (not to toot my own horn), but I’m pretty good at it too. And I know that when Facebook ads are created and implemented the right way, they can be extremely effective and generate amazing results for your page.
It’s just that boosting your post isn’t the right way to do it.
Facebook Advertising Tools
Before I explain the right way to do it, I first need to tell you about Facebook’s various advertising tools, of which there are three to suit everyone’s different requirements and digital skills:
- Boost Post – This is kind of like the easy/beginners level of Facebook advertising. It allows you to, very easily, promote a specific post on your page by clicking a couple of buttons.
- Ad Manager – This is Facebook’s intermediate advertising tool, which allows you to create various campaigns with various objectives.
- Power Editor – This is the expert level for those who run a large number of Facebook ads simultaneously. For example, I run about 200 Facebook ads on a daily basis and Power Editor allows me to create and manage them more easily.
So, what’s wrong with Boost Post?
Boost Post, although it is most definitely the easiest option when it comes to Facebook advertising, it is not the most sensible. As it is very much for beginners or inexperienced social media users, it does not have the in-depth features of Ad Manager or Power Editor. It does not allow you to properly set campaign objectives, target your audience specifically and does not give you full creative control of your ads, whereas Ad Manager and Power Editor do.
The boost post option is therefore not optimised for ROI. It’s Facebook’s way of taking financial advantage of bloggers and business owners that don’t know much about online advertising.
Here’s what it DOES do
When you click on boost post, the only campaign objective you can select is for post engagement. This means you’re paying money to get more ‘likes’ and ‘comments’ and ‘shares’ on your post. So, when you go through with boosting your post, you’re likely to notice a little flurry of activity and see the numbers increase significantly.
These numbers create an illusion that you’re getting great results from boosting your posts, leading you to continue doing it and pouring money mindlessly into the Facebook machine.
But once your campaign is over and the engagement has slowed, there is no end benefit for your Facebook page, other than a few hundred more likes or comments on one individual post.
Likes, shares and comments are not a measure of success and will not pay your bills. Goals are more important. Leads are more important. Sales are more important. That is where your focus should lie.
By using Ad Manager or Power Editor instead, you can select from a whole range of campaign objectives, as the picture below illustrates. This allows you to be a lot more strategic with your Facebook advertising, measure your results and get return on your investment.
As mentioned, the boost post option is extremely limited when it comes to targeting your audience. And when you make the switch to Ad Manager and Power Editor, you’ll be absolutely stunned by the infinite ways in which you can target and create a customer profile. You can create an audience based on location, gender, age, education level, kind of job, place of work, interests, other Facebook pages they like, how many kids they have, if they donate to charity – the list is almost endless.
Facebook has gathered so much data on its users, and using Ad Manager or Power Editor allows you to really see the breadth and depth of info they have on all of us. (I’ll not lie – although it’s professionally beneficial, I find it personally terrifying.) This is perhaps the main benefit of advertising on Facebook and the boost post option does not give you access to any of this.
Furthermore, the boost post does not give you full creative control of your ad. In Ad Manager and Power Editor you can play around with the imagery and wording of your ad, as well as the format, to get it exactly right.
You also have access to some stock imagery too – which is extremely handy if you don’t have your own images or your own stock subscription.
If you plan to carry out some Facebook advertising, do it the right way by using Ad Manager and Power Editor – the optimised tools that allow you to make money, rather than just spend it on ads for the sake of it.
I’ll be honest though – Ad Manager and Power Editor do require a bit of getting used to and if you do not have the digital skills, you might find it hard to get your head around how they work. If this is the case, contact me. Not only will I answer any questions and provide guidance, I also provide Facebook Ad training at all levels and can help you get better results.