In the past week, I have received many questions about how our team uses the Facebook “boost” feature for our clients. The boosting feature has a bad reputation, mainly because you can get much more granular with targeting and maximize ad spend within Ads Manager.
But, what if one of your regular posts takes off? Do you utilize the promoted post option in ads manager or put boost behind it? The promoted post option is generally a better choice. However, if you use boost in a smart way, you can see wonderful results. Below is how we successfully use boost for our clients and how you can, too.
How to Effectively Use Facebook Boost
The reason that marketers do not generally like the boost function is because they tend to expect the same results that you would get by setting an ad. This is a totally unrealistic expectation that will not be met.
What you need to do is shift your thoughts from, “How can the boost help this post?” to, ‘‘Does this post perform well enough on its own to utilize boost?’
You discover that answer by setting up parameters that a post must meet organically.
Set Up Boosting Parameters
In order for a boost to work for you, it must already be a highly engaged post. In our experience, if you boost something that is not already highly engaged, the results will be less than noteworthy.
What we look for is engagement from about 4% (variable) of the total audience reached (which you can see in business manager). So, If our client has 10,000 followers and our post reaches all of them (it won’t), we would look for 400 engagements. Once the post reaches 400 engagements, we can then add $10-15 to boost the post.
Now, it might sound like a daunting task—looking at every single post for each of your clients and how well each post performed—but it actually gets pretty easy. You will start to see a trend with your posts.
For example, one of my clients almost always reaches 4,000 of its 30,000 followers organically. So, if a post reaches roughly 160 likes, we are ready to add a boost behind it. Since we are continuously tracking posts, these are generally easy to spot (160/4000 = 4%).
How to Set the Budget
When we are going through the introductory phase of signing on a client, we go over a strategy. That strategy includes (for social) a posting schedule, an ad strategy, and a boost/promoted post strategy.
In the boost/promoted post strategy, we ask for $100 a month, but rarely exceed $45. (Note: We do not charge the full $100 if we only spend $45; our clients are only charged for what is used from their $100 monthly allowance.) This budget focuses solely on engagement, as does the boost feature.
If your parameters are set correctly, a client who posts to Facebook every weekday (20 times a month) should see three posts or less that reach these parameters. Remember, as your client’s page grows, so will the parameters.
So, if the number you set starts to be too easy to reach, hike it up a bit. Check your follower count and your average post reach often and adjust accordingly. If you are not adjusting for your client, you are doing them a disservice.
What We Expect from Boost
Now, with ads, we are generally looking for a conversion (which are variable depending on the client). But, with boosting, we are solely looking for engagement.
For instance, if the client reaches the 160 engagements and we add $10-15 to boost to friends of friends, or a highly-targeted geographical area, we are likely to see that post reach 600+ engagements, sometimes reaching well over 1,000. And we always aim for $.01-.04 CPR.
Sure, getting likes from 160 of our followers is wonderful, but getting 440 additional engagements from people who do not follow us (yet!) is even better. These people are very likely to like our page and convert to a customer down the road.
This also gives us the opportunity to engage with people who commented on the post. This way, we can create social media relationships with people who otherwise would have not ever engaged with our brand.
If we wanted a conversion, we would absolutely set this up in Ads Manager or Power Editor, but we simply want engagement—and boost makes it so easy.
How has boost worked for you in the past? Do you use the function the same way that we do? Let us know in the comments section below!