In 2014, the Facebook Boost Post button feature was rolled out for Page Managers and Advertisers to quickly show their posts to more people by advertising their post on Facebook's Ad Network.
For the unaccustomed, here's a quick summary of what Facebook's Boost Post button is about:
Boosting posts is an effective and inexpensive way to get more exposure for your content. It’s a simple and easy process - posts are boosted right from your Facebook Page - and you can boost a post for any amount you want. It’s a great way to get more people to see your posts, promote special events, offers and news, and to reach new audiences through targeting. [Learn more]
Now don't get me wrong, I'm a huge fan of Facebook's Advertising products. In fact, I would recommend any small business owner who's looking to get started with paid advertising start with Facebook Ads. But I also believe that to achieve good advertising results, you must adopt good advertising practices.
So here's why you should think twice before slamming that boost post button on your Facebook Fan Page.
1) Your campaign objective may be wrong.
Simply put, Facebook's boost post button has two default Facebook Ad Objectives - Post Engagement (Likes, shares, comments, video views etc.) and website visits. If your goal is to acquire more leads, inquiries or boost sales, you're less likely to get the result you want because Facebook will work towards spending your budget on the Ad Objective you've chosen.
2) Limited Ad Targeting Settings
Over the years, the Boost Post button has expanded its targeting capabilities due to advertiser demand (thank goodness). You can now pretty much target any audience as you would in Facebook Ads Manager or Facebook Power Editor. That being said, if you want to fully harness the power of Ad Targeting, I still suggest you use Power Editor because you have extra options such as the ability to quickly duplicate ads for split testing, or target newer placements like Messenger Ads or Mobile Audience Network. Sorry Boost Post Button, you'll still need to play catch up.
3) Poor Budget Control
I'm surprised the Boost Post button doesn't allow you to set a daily budget. Instead, they force you into fixing a certain budget over a certain time span. Luckily you still get to choose the number of days you want your promotion to run. Again, I'm guessing this feature is as such to make it as easy as possible for advertisers to see quick results on their "boosted campaigns". Also, if you use the Power Editor you can schedule down to the time you want your ads to show.
4) Limitations of the 20% Text Rule
When you post something on the timeline, often times we're not thinking of using an Ad Optimized Facebook Thumbnail, which adheres to the 20% text rule. Simply put, if there's more than 20% worth of text on your post or ad images when advertised, your reach will be limited.
5) You can only boost Published Posts on your Page Timeline
In Ads Manager or Power Editor, you can advertise posts or ads which are hidden from your Page Timeline. However, when using the Facebook Boost Post button, you can only promote posts which are visible on the timeline. Hence, if you wish to launch an ad to a specific audience which excludes your existing fans on your fan page, the Facebook Boost Post button may not be the best choice.
When is the Boost Post Button a good idea?
Now, it ain't all that bad. If you know the exact limitations of the Boost Post Button, and it fits your advertising goals, go ahead and use it. Here are a few scenarios I think using this feature would do your business little to no harm.
1) You're okay with the objectives of the campaign (Post engagements, Website Clicks)
2) You're okay with the Default Campaign Naming Structure of Boosted Posts. Remember, when you boost a post, Facebook automatically creates an Ad Campaign with a default naming convention for boosted posts.
3) It fits into your overall Facebook Advertising strategy, which you are aware of the ad targeting, budgeting, campaign naming and objective limitations and have a system for monitoring your campaigns.
4) And finally, having satisfied the above 3 criteria, you want to get traction for your posts quickly.
I have to hand it to big advertising platforms like Facebook and Google (hint: See Google Adwords Express). They know the best way to acquire new customers (i.e. people who spend on ads) is to get them to try the product as quickly as possible and to see results. What better way to entice new customers than by making a product so simple and easy to use, as well as help them reach their objective of 1000 likes on their latest post? Something we all can learn when we try to build our own products and encourage product adoption.
Now, on to you. What are your thoughts about the Facebook Boost Post button? Did it work for you? Did you find this article useful? Leave a comment below or share this article with a friend or colleague who might benefit from this.
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