If you are one of the many business owners that now use Facebook to promote your business online you have probably used the Facebook boost post on one, many or all of your advertising campaigns. In turn, you probably had hoped that you would see a huge increase in activity on your page and as a result a huge increase in people wanting your services.

Well sadly it does not work like that. If anything it is a detriment to you, as it could be costing you hundreds if not thousands of euros.

In 2012 Facebook introduced simpler ways for you to advertise, prior to this Facebook’s advertising tools were still in their infancy stages. They introduced the “Promote Post” button. With this option, you could create a campaign right on your Facebook site and you would never have to leave your page at all.

Later on down the line, Facebook changed the “Promote Post” into “Boost Post’. There were a few changes but it served the same purpose, creating a way for you as an owner to spend your marketing money and reach more people with your Facebook Posts.

Due to organic post reach being watered down over the past few years (and for some, there is barely any reach at all) many business owners are now turning to the “ Boost Post” option because it’s a quick and easy way, however, it is not a smart way at all.

How Facebook Boosting Works

The basics of it are, you will find a post that you want to advertise and click “ Boost Post” You will then select an audience how much you want to spend, how long you want the ad to run for and then finally click “Boost”.

All Facebook has done for you is to create a new ad campaign with the sole purpose of achieving a high post engagement. This is not the best way to advertise on Facebook at all; in fact, this is a very lazy method.

Why You Should Not Boost Your Posts

Facebook will optimize your ad depending on which objective you choose.

If you choose “website clicks” then Facebook will optimize the post and enable you to get as many clicks onto your website as possible. If it is Website conversions you have selected then Facebook will look at everyone that has already been converted and will try to reach similar people first.

However, if you just Boost the post then all Facebook will do is just optimize the post for more post engagement, which means it will be optimized for more likes, comments, shares, etc. Even if you supply a link in the ad Facebook will still optimize for engagement and not link clicks.

Limited Targeting Options

If you look at Facebook boost post targeting there are three options

1.    People who like your page – advertising to all your fans

2.    People who like your Page and their Friends – advertising to all your fans and all their friends.

3.   People you choose through targeting – advertising to a specific target audience you choose.

Let’s analyze these fully:

People who like your Page:

If you do not have a very high number of Facebook likes on your page (most won’t) then you are immediately wasting your time and money.

People who like your Page and their friends:

It does not matter if you have extremely relevant fans because you will still be wasting your money, because the Friends of Fans category can have millions and millions of members and many or even the majority will not be relevant and will not be in the appropriate your service area, as their friends will live all over the country and even in different parts of the world.

Facebook will not be able to find the most relevant people, and it is impossible for you to add an additional layer of interests to make it more specific.

People you choose with targeting:

This sounds amazing in principle, however the options that Facebook give you are very limited. You cannot use detailed targeting to reach people who are interested in both Interest A and Interest B either. Also, you can’t include or exclude your page fans or Custom Audience from your targeting.

And finally, you cannot control the “ placements” of the ads you pay for.

No Control Over Ad Placements

When you are boosting posts, you cannot select where you want the posts to show. The only options that Facebook will give you are Desktop News Feed and Mobile News Feed.

Facebook will try and optimize your post for you, however, it will try and achieve this in the cheapest way possible, it will even ruin your overall campaign results by doing this.  It basically just wants to show you that you’re getting a lot of engagement however this does not always translate into results.

Let’s have a look at an example, let’s say you are promoting an upcoming event and you want to sell tickets for it. If you choose to advertise on Mobile News Feed and Desktop News Feed, Facebook might, unfortunately, push as much as 99% of your advertising budget to the mobile news feed option because its less expensive than the desktop option.

The conversion rate on mobile is usually 2 to 3 times lower than on a desktop. This tends to be lower because Facebook sees it as an inconvenience to fill in all the information on mobile. However if the website is not mobile-friendly the conversion can be even lower.

If you select the multiple placements option, you’ll be getting a lot of mobile traffic that very rarely converts. Therefore if you want people to come to your event, then you need more overall conversions than overall likes.

Facebook also allows you to run Instagram advertising directly inside Facebook Ad Manager. If your primary objective is post engagement then I suggest adding Instagram as an ad placement so you can get likes on your Instagram page and reach people that are not fans of your Facebook page.

My advice to you is unless you have an unlimited advertising budget then STOP using the boost button. The audience you actually want can be reached in a much more effective way by running ads in the Ads Manager from the back end of Facebook.

Yes, this process is longer however you’ll be able to select an exact campaign objective, you can also target direct the relevant demographics for your service, and have absolute control over where to show your ads.

What taking these necessary steps will achieve is saving you a huge amount of wasted advertising costs and you will see a greater return on your Facebook advertising campaigns.

In conclusion, what you should really want from your Facebook advertising campaigns is not just to accumulate a high number of likes but you want your audience to be converted into customers, you want them to take action and you as the owner should do everything in your power to achieve those results in the most effective way.

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