using facebook promoted posts to boost your blog traffic
So, despite the fact that I "do" social media for my j-o-b, I've been pretty lazy about promoting my blog on social media. I mean, I didn't even really share posts on my own personal Facebook until a little over a month ago. I think part of the reason for that is 1) I wasn't sure if this whole thing really sucked so I wasn't quite ready to put it out there and 2) I didn't want this to be a blog that just my friends read. But, on the other hand, it is a little disheartening to write something you put a lot of time and thought into and then only 11 people see it. So I decided it was time to get a little traffic. I started slowly. About two weeks ago, I posted on my personal Facebook encouraging my friends to "Like my blog already." I got about 50 Likes off the bat, which isn't much, but it was enough to give me access to Facebook Insights, which are analytics (numbers/metrics) for your Facebook Page. You access your Facebook Insights via the admin panel at the top of your Facebook Page.
Insights will give you info on number of Page Likes (and new Likes), Post Reach (how many people saw your posts), and Engagement (how many people Liked, commented or shared). Insights will also show you specific reach and engagement for each post. You can go super in depth with your Insights and find out follower demographics and geography, see what times your Fans are online, and your best post types (links, photos, status updates, etc.).
So now that I had access to my Insights I could see how few people were actually seeing my posts. Starting with a super-low number of Followers obviously isn't the best, but coupling that with the fact that the average post from a brand page only reaches about 16% of Facebook fans meant that like six people were seeing my posts on Facebook.
So Facebook offers an easy an inexpensive way to "boost" your post and get it in front of some new eyes. I mean, there's nothing worse than posting something you think is blog gold and it turns out it's going into an Internet black hole. So I started dipping my toe into Facebook Promoted Posts about a week ago.
You choose the post you want to promote (the blog gold) and click the "Boost Post" button at the bottom right of the post. The minimum is $5, which, for me, got me a new audience of 700-1,400 people. Pretty sweet. You can choose to promote your post to People who Like your Page and their friends, or you can target other users by geography, gender, age and interests.
Through boosting just a few posts, my Facebook Page views are up like 2000% (which, lets be honest, wasn't hard to do) and my promoted posts have reached 1,200 people or more (who wouldn't normally have ever seen my posts). After boosting my first post, my blog traffic increased 418%. AND I've gotten 14 news Facebook Likes.
So, anyway, I'm a fan. I mean, see how that post up there with the adorable croc flipping the bird only reached 7 people? Yeah. Give it a shot on your blog and let me know how it goes!