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Social Media Quickie: Paid Facebook Promotion

One of the easiest ways to get a large audience in touch with your efforts on Facebook is to make use of their paid advertising. While many people will be quick to complain that anything on the world’s greatest social network shouldn’t cost money they need to get in touch with the reality that no other medium allows you to potentially reach as large an audience as quickly or as cost effectively as social media does.

One thing that is necessary before one begins any kind of social media marketing, even the unpaid organic kind, is understanding that the metrics you get excited about – likes, comments, shares – do not necessarily equal sales, even if they do equal greater traffic and brand awareness. On Facebook there are a few different ways to do paid marketing; each of them has a slightly different benefit depending on the results you’re looking to get.

There are a few different ways to give Facebook your money, but basically it breaks down like this:

Sponsored Story –  These have been around for a while; may be being phased out. This type of paid promotion essentially relies on Facebooks data to determine which users interests or activities fall in line with your ad content and matches them.

Page Post Ad – A basic advert that can be shown to everyone on Facebook and gets additional paid distribution among fans. This type of ad specifically promotes the page, website, or encourages viewers to take an action.

Promoted Post or “Boost” – Just about any post can be boosted to get more visibility among fans, friends of fans, or a targeted audience.

For best results I encourage you to use this new knowledge responsibly. Not every post should be boosted! You need to develop a strategy that works with your (hopefully) already established social media plan and budget towards those goals.

How to make this all work for you…
Well. It’s going to take time and some experimenting for you to find not only what messages your audience best responds to but to also develop quality images and content to support those needs. Once that is done you’re ready to get serious about your ad strategy; these tips are only recommended for page admins that have a hand on the pulse of their audience and understand the basics of good content marketing — it doesn’t hurt to have at least a few hundred dedicated fans already either.

Create one or more stunning advertisement images that truly encapsulates the strength of your brand. Use these to do a low cost weekly Page Promotion campaign. Focus these campaigns on getting more traffic to your website or gathering new fans for the page itself. Set the budget for at least $2/day.

Assuming you are following a consistent and effective content marketing plan, simultaneously pick one to two posts each week to be your promoted/boosted posts. Generally you will want these to be posts that actually hype your services or products. Set the budget for each of these posts to be at least $5 per post.

Easy, right?
Now, you’re completely armed with everything you need to throw away a ton of money! Yay!
That said, let’s talk a little bit about best practices:

Only promote your own content. This means don’t pay money to boost a post from some other page; it also means that you only promote posts that link to a website you control.

Only promote good content. This means pay to promote things you know your audience will actually find interesting or useful.

Whenever possible promote content that has a powerful call to action – either encouraging them to pick up the phone or fill out a contact form so you get the leads you need.

Remember the 20% rule. Facebook doesn’t want your ad images to just be full of text. They will deny your ad placement if your image contains too much text.

Monitor your ads. This doesn’t just mean monitoring the results – this means monitoring the reactions from your fans also. There is no more easy way to throw away money AND lose fans than to over-promote. If you get comments from a lot of people complaining about the ads you might want to take a look at how much you’re tooting your horn and adjust it accordingly.

There will be a lot of learning to do if you are taking on your paid social promotion yourself. There is a reason why the people who work as social media managers do it as a full time job — because in order to do it right, it is! Take it slow, budget low, and learn as you go. You can figure it out and put those marketing dollars to work for you. It’s important to remember even paid promotion can take time, so be sure to stay focused on creating quality content and engaging your audience even if you’ve decided it’s time to bite the bullet and pay Zuckerberg his money.

Too much to handle?
Head swimming just thinking about this stuff? Don’t Panic! We can help!
Geeks Worldwide is proud to provide not only exceptional social media management services but also great social media training for business owners who are looking to take their brand presence in hand. Whether you just need some supplemental posting, or are looking to become the next social media superstar we can help!

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