The Facebook Page Post Boost Experiment

Sunday, May 15, 2016
Before two weeks ago, I had been completely lacking in my social media marketing. Call it a bad attitude, rough spot in life, or thinking no amount of marketing mattered unless I was J. K. Rowling--my Facebook page, Twitter account, and Instagram were sorely lacking. I was still active on Facebook and Twitter thanks to my job with WOW! as social media manager, but my personal accounts were a mess.

While recovering from being sick and thinking about a blog idea I'd had for a couple months, I decided to get out of my self-induced rut and focus on these three social media accounts. And here's the great thing: the social media world is very forgiving. As soon as I was active again, so were my followers, friends, and page fans. And best of all, I was having fun! It was bringing back a spark for my writing life that had been missing for months (over 12 months actually). 

Okay, okay, so you probably decided to read this post because of the title--so yes, during this resurrection, I also decided to boost (for $$) a Facebook post on my professional page. (And you could LIKE it right now and join in the fun--no pressure--it would just make this little author writing this blog post so happy.) On a whim, I had asked my Facebook  fans (the people who like your professional page are called fans) what is some advice they follow day to day to make it through--do they have a saying or inspirational quote that helps them? The response was more than I could have hoped for. 

Facebook in all its wisdom also noticed that this post was getting more attention than most of mine do; and in my notifications, I was informed I could boost this post and reach a much greater number of people. I started thinking: What would it hurt to spend $20 to boost this post and try to get more likes on my page? I am getting ready to start a new project, and I need all the support I can get. So, I did. I spent $20 and boosted the post, which shows up as a SPONSORED post in people's newsfeed. You can also target whom you want to see this sponsored post, and I chose my friends and their friends. I did it this way because I was thinking two things: 1. new people might see their own friend answered my question so I would have a connection already  2. there might be people I know, but have not connected with yet on Facebook. 

I also decided to run a contest with this post. For the week the post was sponsored, if someone commented on a different post OR liked my page, they were entered to win one of my books or $20 toward editing. I put this contest announcement IN THE COMMENTS of the sponsored post, so people sharing their day-to-day inspirational advice would see the contest. I also put it on my private Facebook profile and on Twitter.

I am extremely happy with the results. I have 32 new fans (which I had been stuck on 939 for MONTHS), and the woman who won my book was a NEW FAN--one I did not know before this boost experiment. I don't have to tell you how every new person who will read your book is an opportunity.

Also I learned, people like to share advice and be asked their opinion. I don't think I would have gotten the same results if I would have simply said in my sponsored post: Like my page. Win a book. 

But best of all, I have my marketing passion back--and I'm planning more marketing ideas all the time. I'm sure if my publishers are reading this, they're saying: "Well, thank goodness for that!" If you have any questions about Twitter or Facebook pages or boosting posts, just ask in the comments below. 

Margo L. Dill is the author of three books for children and teaches classes for WOW! Women On Writing.

Are you a fan of WOW!'s page on Facebook? You can join it here


Sioux Roslawski said...

Okay Margo, this is from someone who is really NOT on Facebook in any way, shape or form: Do I reallyreallyreally need to get on Facebook--professionally--if I EVER get this book finished and if it's ever published?

Or do I need to get on it now, to build up my blog followers (from 3 to a higher number)?

Margo Dill said...

Yes, I think it is beneficial for all authors to build your social networks and connections before your book publishing deal!

Sara Codair said...

Do you have any advice for managing multiple social media accounts? I blog and tweet as an author, but my facebook use is solely personal. Having a third "professional" social media account seems daunting.

Margo Dill said...

If you create a professional page on Facebook, you can connect it to your Twitter account, so when you post on your FB page, it will automatically go to your Twitter account. There are also settings on Facebook profiles where you can connect it with Twitter, but not every post. Google this topic and you will find the latest way to connect these two social media giants but not double your work.

Sara Codair said...

That is helpful! Thank you!

MonetteChilson said...

I am one of the few humans on the planet still not on Facebook. Because I'm a writer, I do have a social media presence, but it's all Twitter and Instagram. Since I kind of don't know what I'm missing (other than the FB downsides I hear people complain about—people who they purposely didn't want in their real life finding them, the time suck factor, etc.), my question is this—in your opinion am I missing a irreplaceable marketing opportunity or is it ok to limit my social media to allow for more writing time? Would love to hear what you & other writers think of this existential question—to FB or not to FB?

Margo Dill said...

This is a great question. We are going to be publishing an article about this very topic in our next issue which is coming out in June. But to give you a preview, basically you need to ask yourself where is your audience. Since I'm not sure exactly what you write or who you're trying to reach , I'm not sure where your audience hangs out. If they don't really hang out on Facebook then you don't need a Facebook presence if you don't want one. So that's probably where you need to start. Where are the people hanging out online that you want to reach?

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