When you consider there are almost 3 billion social media users today, it’s easy to see how social media is a huge audience pool for brands to market to.
In fact, your brand most likely already has Facebook Business (it’s almost impossible to run a business without it) and you probably already grow your organic feed by sharing posts.
Unfortunately, organic social reach for businesses is on the decline in place of more content from family and friends. This means that posts from people we know are prioritised over posts from businesses.
Basically, businesses now have to pay to be seen.
How do you pay to be seen? Promoting, sponsoring, or boosting your posts is an incredible way to leverage paid social media advertising.
What is Boosting?
Boosting is when you pay for your post to reach more people. The post itself has already been shared to your own page, but by boosting it you pay money for it to reach people it wouldn’t ordinarily reach. You can identify a boosted post by the “sponsored” label.
It appears in your feed the same as any other post might do, so it doesn’t interrupt scrolling or necessarily feel like an ad.
Considering the organic appearance of businesses is declining, there’s a good chance you’ll have to promote your posts in order for your followers to see your post at all (even if they follow you and like your content). And the two platforms that are best for this are Facebook and Instagram.
Facebook is the biggest platform to boost your posts on with more than 2 billion people logging on each month. It’s quick and easy, and there are fewer targeting choices than in a Facebook Ads campaign, which includes parameters like hobbies and buying habits.
What you do get to decide is if you want to speak to people who already like your page, target your followers’ friends, or use custom targeting. You can then choose your budget and duration, and Facebook will actually show you the expected reach for those inputs. You can also choose multiple objectives when boosting a post.
You don’t even have to enter the intimidating Facebook Ad Manager to boost one of your posts, which makes it perfect for the DIY business owner as it doesn’t take expert Facebook knowledge. That said, Facebook boosting still requires a strategy.
Hot tip: Create value for the customer. Since this will appear as they are scrolling through their personal feed, you don’t want it to come off as a sales pitch.
Promote an Instagram Post
On Instagram, you’ll first be asked why you’re promoting this post: More profile visits? More website traffic? More promotion views? Select the one that applies to you, then choose from three targeting options, and voila!
Once you’ve boosted, the post actually shows up under your Facebook Business Manager, so you can see both your Facebook and Instagram boosted posts in the one place.
“If you have a blog that you’ve put time, effort, or money into then it deserves to be seen.”
Instagram is also good at telling you which posts have already gained a lot of interest or traction and make a suggestion to boost that post. Why? Because it has already proven with your audience to be successful, so it will most likely also perform well with a wider audience.
Hot tip: Instagram tends to have success with sponsored giveaway posts, so try offering a prize next time you boost on Insta.
Tips for Boosting
- Decide on a clear goal. It might be more traffic to your website, more page likes, or simply raising brand awareness.
- Experiment with different demographics.
- Narrow your audience to be specific and relevant.
- Always experiment with different posts, then record and compare results.
- Use boosting in conjunction with paid social advertising.
A real-life example of the power of boosting: Genesis Health and Fitness had a 32% increase in conversions from social since working with us to create on-brand creative and copy to engage and deliver results. We used sponsored post content as part of our social media strategy to increase their engagement and conversions.
Boosting Versus Ads
Whereas a boosted post is an amplified version of something you’re posting on your page anyway, an ad is generally a targeted campaign to meet objectives. An ad has a specific goal to a highly targeted audience including their hobbies and buying patterns in addition to the expected location and age.
A boosted post is like the baby version of a Facebook ad. The cost is pretty low when you consider the literal thousands of people you can reach.
It’s designed to drive engagement in the form of comments and likes and increase awareness from your customers for a low price. It is also a brilliant way to get your content out to the masses. If you have a blog that you’ve put time, effort, or money into then it deserves to be seen. Boosting it through Facebook or Instagram is a great way to get the relevant audience onto the page.
Boosting should always be a part of running your business on social media. It’s fast to do, already mobile-friendly, and you get bang for your buck. It should support your higher-level advertising campaigns that have a more in-depth strategy due to the wider capabilities of Facebook Ads Manager.
The most successful campaigns often use a blend of boosting and paid advertising. The tracking of data, interpretation and adjustments take expertise. Luckily, that’s what we’re here for.