We started in the era when exposure was free. Any Ukrainian gal like myself could rank in Google organic or get known on Facebook or Twitter by just being active and helpful.

In many areas (and for personal branding) it still remains true but we do see the trend and the difficulties we are facing:

  • Facebook page presence is moving to almost 100% ad-driven;
  • Twitter is so cluttered that it takes much more time to get noticed there,
  • StumbleUpon is still more of a lottery than an effort-play

All is quickly moving to an obvious future: Brand presence on social media should be re-enforced by paid ads. But what if you own a small business and can’t afford big budgets?

Well, as the one running a small personal business, I think I know some (not all) answers: To win the game with corporate budgets you need to get smarter, pickier and more targeted.

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To continue our “Build traffic without depending on any ONE tactic“, let’s try and learn social media advertising on a budget. To keep these chats easier to follow and less cluttered, we’ll tackle one social media network at a time. And we’ll start with the social media advertising pioneer: Facebook

Disclaimer: I have never done Facebook advertising for clients and my experience is highly personal (not professional)

Step one: Facebook Ads to Get Page Likes

Note: Before paying for Facebook ads (from your small budget) make sure your page looks complete and trustworthy: You need a cover photo, a good profile pic, About info, website link and of course solid shares. For content inspiration to post on your page, sign in ViralContentBuzz.com. Good page content will result in more likes from the ads!

If you have a brand new Facebook page, you can’t do without advertising it for likes (aka people who become followers). Facebook page doesn’t have too many flexibility when it comes to acquiring friends. You can:

  • Invite your friends (you can’t afford to make that too often though; maybe once in three months)
  • Pay for ads (think of $100 a month as the minimum budget)

Targeting your ads tighter is a good idea to make the most of a small budget. I usually target by country to limit spammy likes (I am from Ukraine and if I don’t take offense, people outside of US and UK can deal with that sentence either :) Nothing personal, but we are dealing with small budgets here). The combination of highly relevant tags and highly selective locations work well for me in terms of getting quality likes for less.

Facebook Ads to Get Page Likes

Step two: Facebook Boosted Posts: Fight for Higher EdgeRank

When you already have some following, you can re-locate that budget to Boosted Posts.

Now, to make sure you understand WHY: Facebook won’t show your brand updates to your page fans because they believe PAGE updates are of less value. So, even if you have fans, they are most likely to never see your page updates. That’s when Facebook Boosted Posts come in handy: They override Facebook’s default EdgeRank behavior and shows your page updates to MORE fans*.

*Boosted stories work both ways: you’ll get a few new PAGE likes as well as higher interaction with your update. Targeting “fans and their friends” has worked better for me in terms of meaningful interactions

Boosted stories

You don’t need to boost each and every story you post on your page. I tend to use (the combination of) the following criteria when deciding if I need to boost or determining the budget:

  • Is it a very important update for our followers?
  • Is it likely to have meaningful interactions (ask a good question in the update if you are looking for interactions)
  • Is it timely and may result in some excitement?

I wouldn’t boost photos as they usually do very well on their own.

Now, the MOST important tip when it comes to boosting page updates: ALWAYS interact with the post comments (like and reply) AS THE PAGE. Remember: Interactions (back and forth) boost your page EdgeRank (next time those people you interacted with will have more chances to see your page update for free!)

Spend money wisely: Make the most of each boosted post!

More traffic tips from the chat series

Please share your experience with Facebook ads! Do they work in any niche!

 

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Ann Smarty

Founder at MyBlogGuest
Ann Smarty is the founder of MyBlogGuest. Feel free to contact her if you have any questions about the platform.

One Response to “The Small Guys’ Guide to Facebook Advertising #myblogguest”

  1. Adam Donkus

    Thanks Ann I will hopefully be able to participate in the chat with a little frequency, but love these wrap up posts.
    The Key nugget I got was the idea of having a minimum budget of $100/mo just for boosting posts.

    Reply

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