Ever wondered if that little “Boost Post” button on Facebook is worth it?
While I don’t claim to be an expert on the matter, I have used the boost button on a number of occasions, to varying degrees of success.
At the end of the day, the jury is still out on whether it all actually worth it or not. Sure, my posts have been seen by a LOT of people, but I’ve never actually reached any of the targets I’ve set, so I can’t really say it worked.
I’m not even 100% sure I agree with the need for the Boost Button in the first place. In the good old days, you wrote a post on your page, and it was seen by everyone who liked your page. Simple. Now, your post is only ever seen by a small margin of the people who like the page.
Facebook uses some complicated formula to determine who gets to see it and who doesn’t. The more likes you get, the more that formula lets people see your post. (No idea how that formula is worked out. If anyone knows, I’d love to find out).
If you want to increase the odds and the reach of your post, you have to pay for the privilege. It’s Facebook advertising on a micro-scale, for a much smaller outlay.
You choose a budget, starting at about $5 per post and going up to several hundred. You can choose to target friends of friends, or you can target based on age, location and even sex. The targeted options obviously cost more money.
My first time boosting, my $6 budget seemingly lasted forever and resulted in over 3000 views for 112 new likes to my Facebook page. I was promoting a new competition on my blog and had set a target to reach 3000 likes within a month. A big ask, sure, but I was offering a $200 prize if we reached it. My return on investment (ROI) was about 5c per like.
Since then, I’ve tried a couple of other smaller boosts with mixed results, leaving me to believe it is the actual post subject that matters most.
My second boost was more mundane – a 5 star review on my book, Vampire Origins to a mostly female, young adult audience in the hopes it might organically boost sales. It didn’t.
I then hit upon my most successful Facebook boost. For about $12, I boosted a competition offering the chance to become a character in book 2 of Vampire Origins. Targeting it again to the female young adult audience, I reached more than 12,800 people. However, in terms of actual click throughs, there was only 58 people who went through to the competition. Not the highest ROI, but still, it was 58 people I may not have reached without it. And they did only cost me 20c per click through.
My last time boosting, I again went the whole targeting route, setting a $25 budget, which was sucked dry in a single evening. Most disappointing of all, it only reached 3000 people for 25 interactions. My ROI was $1 per interaction – much higher than any of the previous attempts.
So why did the last attempt have such a bad return? I was again offering prize money – $200 to sign up for my newsletter. Perhaps it was the fact that they had to navigate away from Facebook and fill in a subscription form. Then again, they had to do the same for the Character Competition, and that had a much better ROI.
So does it work?
Well, in a word, yes. But you really do need to boost the right post. And that in itself is a science – finding the type of post that Facebook users will naturally respond to. The true measure of success is a post that goes viral, with people sharing and spreading the word themselves.
I haven’t got there yet. But if I had the right post, I’d probably try again.
One of the unexpected benefits I saw was a flow on effect to my other posts on the page. All of them have had a reasonably significant increase in reach.
How about you? You’ve obviously come to this page because you’re searching for information about the Boost Button. In fact, this blog post is the most searched for and highest ranked post on our website. That tells me there are plenty of people interested in finding out more about it.
Join the conversation and share your experiences.
Have you used it?
What kinds of posts have you tried?
Having read my experience, would you bother trying it for yourself?