The Rules Have Changed Again
Now that Facebook is a publicly traded company it has a responsibility to its shareholders which entails, among other things, turning a profit. To this end Facebook has started doing things a little bit differently.
This is likely why it decided to roll out “promoted posts” this week. Facebook says that Fan Page users are only reaching a small share of their Fans when they post a status update. It is unclear whether they are intentionally preventing posts from being seen by all Fans or are just offering a way to help get your post seen by more of your Fans. But either way, Facebook says ‘Promoted Posts’ are a great idea.
So, of course, they are charging for them.
That leaves businesses and marketers wondering whether it is worth their time, effort and money, and perhaps most importantly, scratching their heads to understand how it works.
Fortunately, unlike the complicated Facebook ad system with its “bidding” process, the new ‘Promoted Posts’ feature is fairly straightforward. You can set a budget and choose whatever price you want to pay. Just click the “Promote” button clearly visible in the status update box. For example, a $10 budget will help you reach a few thousand of your Fans directly.
It remains to be seen how well this new ‘Promoted Posts’ feature will be embraced by marketers and whether or not posts which are not promoted will still be received by Fans of pages. If Facebook has chosen to significantly limit a page from reaching all the people who ‘Like’ a page, this will likely result in a huge backlash from users. However, if all they are trying to do is help businesses reach more of their fan base, and offering them a simple method for doing so, then I think this will be a big revenue generator for the world’s largest social media network.
Posts that are eligible to be promoted include Page posts you’ve created in the last three days: status updates, photos, offers, videos and questions. To promote a past post, click the Promote button just below where people can add a comment, select a budget and click Save.
If you need to, you can change your promoted post’s budget. Do this by clicking on the “Promoted for $X” button, selecting the pencil icon next to Budget and choosing your new budget. Then click Save. Your new budget will go into effect immediately.
Once your promoted post is live, it will appear in news feeds with a “Sponsored” label on the bottom.