October 31, 2013 by thesmallmediumdenver
An integral part of building any Facebook Fan Page presence is using the network’s Ad Campaigns to build an audience. Without an audience, your quality posts and content may be seen by only a handful of users. Essentially, it’s like having a gorgeous billboard in the middle of the ocean instead of having one along side a busy interstate.
I continue to work with various size businesses on building and maintaining a Facebook page beneficial to their products and services. The business owners often ask: What are Facebook Ads?; What do they look like?; Who sees them?; and How will they help the page? These are all valid concerns, as the term, “ad”, means different things to different people, especially those new to Facebook. Not to mention, ads are presented differently on the social network than with other online media.
In this blog, I’ll discuss a few items that better explain what it means to promote your page with ads, including costs and results. As a social media manager, I continue developing better examples and explanations to use when discussing a monthly ad campaign and budget, and I hope to communicate some of them in this article.
Overview of Ads and Promoting with Facebook
Let’s address the common questions, starting with answering what are Facebook Ads and promoted posts and how do they look. Ads look like those seen during a google search, but appear on someone’s Facebook timeline instead of a list of results. Another variety of promotion includes the promoted posts, where people outside of your Fan Page network see individual posts made from the page. While people may not “like” your page, you pay for them to see a specific post of yours pop up in their timeline.
With regard to the question of who sees them, that will vary depending on how you customize your ad or promoted post. You can customize a specific range of users fitting your demographics needs, or you can choose to promote towards friends of your connections. Either way, paying for promoting your Fan Page is the best way to reach new users and potential clients, otherwise your page content will remain viewed by only your existing connections.
If you plan to use your Fan Page as a marketing tool, not just a stagnant site, then creating a budget, of any size, for Facebook advertising is the most efficient way to expand your audience.
General Strategies for Facebook Ad Campaigns and Boosted Posts
If your Fan Page is in its youthful stages of existence, or its been around but needs an audience boost, then you’ll need to promote your page. This can cost as little as a few dollars for one day, or hundreds, to thousands, of dollars on a monthly basis. I have more experience with small business owners, thus I’ve seen success with $25 to $300 a month towards ads. Of course, larger businesses spending more than that will see far greater results, but any size budget can benefit a Fan Page, especially when it’s actively updated with quality content.
Facebook allows you to customize your Ad Campaign, including starting and ending dates vs. a continuous campaign, and setting criteria for the audience you want to attract. The criteria can include gender, age, location, and interests of users you wish to see your Facebook Ad.
A second method of paid Facebook promotion is to boost individual posts from your page’s timeline. A boosted post is also designed to give your page more reach, but with the intention of engaging with a single post vs. leading them to “like” your page. Engagement in your posts are important for your overall Facebook presence, thus boosting a post can produce “likes”, comments, and shares that help increase your overall reach.
When boosting a post, it is a good idea to make the post engaging by asking questions, opinions, etc. Not only do you want to promote your business, you want to be social with users. Boosted posts can also be customized to attract your preferred demographics, including promoting to friends of friends, or to reach users outside existing connections.
Overall Goals of Added Reach
In general, Fan Pages that have a larger audience to target may have an easier time promoting and advertising to gain “likes”, but the results are still relative to each business. A national clientele base provides a larger audience when using Facebook Ads, but a smaller audience base at a local level can still be beneficial. Like most things, you pay for what you get, so the more money you give Facebook, the more people they’ll expose your Fan Page to, regardless of the size of your potential audience.
When advertising and boosting posts, always keep your content in mind, including images your potential audience will see. Quality banner images are great to use in an ad campaign, and you can customize your ad to use several different images to be seen by Facebook users. Also, plan to make engaging posts during your campaign period, as this will be a good time for new connections to check out what your page has to offer.
Please leave any comments or concerns you have about using Facebook Ads and boosting posts. I’d love to hear your thoughts. If you’re a small business owner in the Greater Denver Area looking for assistance with your social media presence, contact John at 303.725.4702.