Posted on Apr 05, 2021 by Imaginal Marketing
Red alert for brands! Facebook might look free—and it might act free—but Facebook is NOT free.
Yes, you can publish posts on your Facebook brand page for free. But if you want anyone to see them—even the people who like your page—you have to pay to boost your posts. Facebook has been “pay to play” for brands for years, and you can’t beat them. So, you have to join them.
The upside of boosting posts is, Facebook has incredible targeting tools that let you choose your perfect audience. Once you master the skill of targeting your audience, you will start to see more comments, clicks, page likes, purchases and new guests coming from your posts. Even if you’re not tech savvy, you can strategically boost salon posts on Facebook. Here is our step-by-step guide.
NOTE: For best results on Facebook, post about 2-3 times per week, and boost every post, every time.
Once you have published your post, or scheduled it to publish at a later date, click the blue “Boost Post” button on the bottom right corner.
You are taken to a page that lets you choose your boosting audience, duration, and budget.
Since you know your potential clients better than Facebook, you (not Facebook) should customize your audience. Choose the option “People you choose through targeting.” In our example post, we are promoting a blog about the Botanical Repair product line. So we’re selecting an audience likely to be interested in that topic.
Audience selection starts with GENDER. The majority of people on Facebook likely to be interested in this topic are women, so we will limit this audience to women. Then we choose AGE. Hair care is pretty universal, so we think this topic would appeal to women of all ages: 18+.
Then we choose LOCATION. Always pick the radius around your salon that people realistically travel to get to you. In our example, the salon’s two locations have guests who drive up to 25 miles to visit them, so that is our boosting radius.
REMINDER! Your goal for social media is to get people to come to your salon and buy your services and products. For that reason, you must make sure the audience is geographically limited to people who can do that. Getting likes and comments on a post is awesome, but if your engagement is coming from people in a different state or country, those people will never come through your door. That’s why this aspect of targeting is super important: Everyone who sees this post should be physically close to you.
We continue with audience selection to Detailed Targeting. One of the best ways to target an audience is to choose people with similar interests to the post you are promoting. We are going to choose from the “Interests” field. This is a blog post about Aveda hair products so we’ll choose the interests “Aveda,” “Hair care” and “Hair products.” This gets us a potential audience of 280,000 women within 25 miles of the salon who show an interest in those topics.
Down at the bottom of this field, Facebook lets you know whether your audience selection is effective. As you can see here, it is. (Good job!)
NOTE! In general, when creating your boosting audience, you want to think about your ideal guests and what other brands they like. Do your guests rock Louis Vuitton bags, live in Lululemon Athletica gear, love shoe shopping at Saks Fifth Avenue, and buy groceries at Whole Foods Market? All those brands (and many more) are options you can choose. This is the type of targeting that gets your posts shown to people similar to your existing guests.
“Interests” is just one of the “Detailed Targeting” fields. You can browse the Detailed Targeting drop-down menus to see what other options exist. Here are a couple others to consider:
Demographics: Financial. You can choose people whose household income is in the top 5-10% of your chosen area.
Demographics: Relationships. Choosing women who are “Engaged” are great for posts about bridal services, updos, or special event makeup.
Click the “Suggestions” and “Browse” options in the “Detailed Targeting” section to see the many ways you can target your audience.
Now we move down to the section marked “Automatic Placements,” which is toggled ON automatically. We’re going to switch it OFF and here’s why: This section shows different platforms besides Facebook where you can run this boosted post. Your post is optimized for Facebook and not these other platforms, so if it shows on Instagram, there’s going to be a link people can’t click. (The Instagram box is also checked by default, so make sure you un-check that box as well.)
Also, the audience you just chose has a potential to reach 280,000 people on Facebook—but not these other platforms. So you would possibly limit the audience you just targeted.
(Not to mention: we think getting targeted posts in our Messenger inbox is just kinda creepy.)
We don’t want to boost this Facebook post on Instagram because in our experience, when you boost one post on both platforms, Instagram drains the majority of that boosting budget, so the post doesn’t effectively reach that super targeted audience on Facebook you just created.
If you want to promote this post on Instagram, you can. To do that you’d create a separate post optimized for Instagram, and post it and boost it on Instagram. That’s two separate posts, boosted with two separate budgets on two separate platforms. You will get the best results that way.
(Boosting a post on Instagram is almost identical to boosting on Facebook, except the initial button looks different. Click the “Promote” button on your post to boost on Instagram.)
Now we move on to duration of time the post will run, and how much you want to spend. We recommend running your posts for 4-10 days (start with 7), for a couple reasons. One: the Facebook algorithm takes up to 4 days to “learn” the audience that’s actively responding to your post, so after 3-4 days, Facebook starts to help your targeting become even more effective.
Two: this post is being boosted, and will show on people’s news feeds 24/7. Some people are on Facebook every day while others only use it on occasion. Boosting for at least a week will ensure many people in your targeted audience will potentially see your post, even the ones who only come onto Facebook every few days.
(NOTE: The exception is when you have a time-sensitive post promoting a particular date or event coming up soon. Your post will still be shown to your selected audience during that time, so don’t worry if you can’t run it for more than 3 days.)
For budget, we recommend $10-$25 per post so it is seen by a good cross-section of the audience you just built. Depending on how large your market is, you can play with this budget.
When you have made all these selections, double check all the parameters you just set for boosting your post. If they are all correct, click BOOST, and you are done.
Boosting posts takes a few tries to get familiar with it, so keep this guide handy! We promise, it will become second nature. Once you start seeing the results that targeted boosting makes for your social media presence and your bottom line, you will wish you had started sooner.
And remember, any questions, your friendly social media experts at IM are standing by.