August 1, 2012

How to promote posts on your Facebook page

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6 tactics for getting into your fans’ news feeds

Target audience: Nonprofits, cause organizations, foundations, NGOs, social enterprises, businesses, Facebook members.

John HaydonIn May, Facebook rolled out a new Facebook page feature called Promoted Posts as a way to help you increase exposure for your organization’s page updates.

Promoted posts are labeled “sponsored” and show up in the news feeds — both Web and mobile — of people who like your Page. When fans interact with the post, it’s then shown to their friends.

You can promote any of your most recent posts by selecting “Promote” at the bottom of the post and following these instructions:

1Mind the gap – Facebook allows you to promote only your most recent updates over the past three days. This means you should really be aware of how your content is performing each day so you don’t miss out on an opportunity to promote a post that happens to go viral.

2Always be analyzing – Facebook has made it easier than ever to know how each update is performing with real-time data located right underneath each update (as shown at below).

3Get notified — One easy way to be alerted about updates that go viral is to use Hyper Alerts. This is a third-party tool that allows you to receive instant notifications about your page updates.

4Have cash on hand – Make sure you have a discretionary budget for promoted posts. This way you don’t have to miss an opportunity to promote a post because you had to wait three days (see No. 1) for approval to spend $25.

5Promote awesome – If you publish content that people can’t help but talk about, it means that your ad dollars will go further for each promoted post. In the example above, I paid $15 to reach 7,000 people, but as those people talked about the update, a snowball effect started, resulting in 10 new fans, 816 comments, 119 post likes, 35 shares.

6Know thy plan — Just because an update goes wildly viral doesn’t mean you should spend money to promote it. Ask yourself if promoting the post makes sense in terms of your goals and branding.

To be very clear, Promote Posts is not meant to replace having a smart strategy or working hard to get to know your fans. They’re simply meant to enhance what you are already doing right.

How are you using Promoted Posts (if at all)?John Haydon delivers social web strategy solutions for “the quick, the smart, and the slightly manic.” Curious? Then connect up: Contact John by email, see his profile page, visit the John Haydon blog, follow him on Twitter and Google Plus or leave a comment.

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  • Bev Barnett

    Have you seen any evidence of Facebook squashing delivery of posts within the first three days, supposedly to “force” the page owner to opt for promoted posts? I’ve had someone ask me about it – I can’t see her stats to know if what she’s interpreting is correct, but she’s telling me her views and shares have dropped significantly during the first three days, then seem to rise again. Is there any validity to this?

  • jdlasica

    Looks like there have been more and more complaints about this from brands, suggesting that there’s something to this.