• Are promoted posts on Facebook worth it?

    Are promoted posts on Facebook worth it?

    I’ve been using the promoted page posts function on Facebook for some clients’ pages recently. From my experience, is it worth it?

    First of all, let’s look at some of the debate that there was been around this.

    There was a social media furore a few months back whenever Facebook introduced the promoted posts function at the same time as some page administrators noticed that their posts were reaching fewer fans than in the past.

    Some (primarily Dangerous Minds) were quick to conclude that Facebook was deliberately restricting the number of fans who saw a page’s posts organically so that administrators would be compelled to use the promoted posts function. In effect, they argued that Facebook was artificially holding back posts from newsfeeds and only releasing them upon payment of a fee.

    Facebook strongly argued that this wasn’t the case (and this post on TechCrunch backs this up). Facebook said that it was just doing what it had always done – using its ranking algorithm (EdgeRank) to choose and present the most relevant stories in each person’s newsfeed in an effort to fight spam and protect the integrity of the newsfeed.

    Assuming that we believe the Facebook side of the story, are promoted posts still worth it?

    Here, in my experience, are just a few of the main benefits:

    If a fan doesn’t regularly click, like, comment or share posts from your page, your posts will be much less likely to appear in their newsfeed. This means that pages are in danger of preaching to the converted, or the already highly engaged. In some respects, this isn’t a bad thing. But you will probably also want to engage with and convert people who aren’t already highly engaged. Promoted posts can help you do this by ensuring that your posts do appear in the newsfeeds of fans who aren’t currently regular clickers, likers, commenters or sharers. But it’s best to carefully chose which posts to promote.

    This can be very useful for reengaging fans. Some fans may not have seen your content for a while – not necessarily because they are not interested in it. Promoted posts can help reengage them.

    Promoted posts are really quite inexpensive and can be great value for money. Depending on how many fans your page has, you can create quite an impact by combining high-quality, engaging content with promoting a post for as little as $10.

    You can choose the option of ‘friends of friends’ to see the promoted posts. This can be a great way to increase the number of fans your page has. If your fans are interested in the content you post on your page, the chances are that at least some of their friends will be too. I’ve found that a high quality post promoted to friends of friends can add a significant number of new fans to the page.

    Promoting allows you to turbo charge very important messages. If you have something really important that you need to tell as many of your fans as possible about, promoted posts can help you. I’ve tested this. I’ve posted important, engaging content without promotion and an equally (as far as it can be without being too similar) engaging, quality post to the same page with promotion. Whilst both achieved lots of engagement and a strong viral effect, the promoted post achieved noticeably more.

    That said, whilst promoted posts can certainly be useful, there is no doubt that the best way to use Facebook pages is still to post high-quality, engaging content that informs and entertains. If you post spammy, overly-commercial content, your posts will be as (in fact probably more) ineffective with promoted posts.