When Facebook became a publically traded company their priorities were forced to change. They needed to make money. To do so, Facebook needed to find a way to make advertising on the site more profitable for businesses. Not only did they need to make the site generate revenue, but they also wanted to maintain the integrity of the user experience.
The result has been multiple changes to the algorithm, which limits the amount of information you see in your newsfeed. As a user, you now only see the top posts or posts that the algorithm deems as something you might be interested in, because you have engaged with posts from certain users in the past.
What this means for businesses is that Facebook became a “pay to play” platform. The bad news: You may have noticed that only somewhere between 5-15% of your fans will see your posts on your page and the only organic way to get exposure is if others like or share your post.
The good news: With the “boost your post” feature, Facebook now allows you to pay to have your post show up in the newsfeed of all your fans and their friend’s pages. Or, you can set the post to be shown to specific cities and age ranges that fit in your target demographic. The result is that Facebook advertising has become one of the least expensive and most effective options in the online advertising space.
Often, you are paying 25 cents to 75 cents per click, compared to $1-5/click with pay per click advertising through Google Adwords. If you are finding that your Facebook fans have slowly stopped engaging with you online, or if you have added Facebook fans with the good intentions of reaching them, but have become frustrated with the lack of sales and traffic coming from the platform, you may want to try boosting a few posts. Even $50/week could make a significant difference in your business.
HERE ARE SOME GENERAL GUIDELINES TO DECIDE IF FACEBOOK ADVERTISING MIGHT BE EFFECTIVE FOR YOUR BUSINESS:
Are your customers primarily isolated to certain cities?
If you can target 80% of your potential clientele within a city, you should be considering running Facebook ads. That same $500 you would sink into a weekly newspaper ad could be used to completely saturate your neighboring zip codes online. This is great for both online and brick and mortar retail stores and services.
Are you currently spending money on untrackable advertising?
Often we find that companies tend to spend their marketing dollars the same way for years on end, without ever really questioning the return on investment (ROI) they are receiving from the ad, because, “it’s just what they have always done it.” We met a business owner recently who was still spending $20,000 a year with the Yellow Pages. These marketing dollars could be much better spent!
Do you lack organic website traffic?
Often when businesses lack organic website traffic their impulse is to invest into pay per click ads (PPC) that show up on top of the search results. While this is a way to advertise your business and generate traffic to your website, you are actually spending up to 8x as much as you would for a click from Facebook. However, the Facebook lead will be lower quality since the website visitor was not actively looking for your product or service. Running both campaigns simultaneously and tracking conversions will allow you to most effectively invest your marketing dollars. Often, it takes multipe touches before converting a sale, so Facebook ads allow you a relatively inexpensive way of targeting people to see your messaging multiple times in a month.