It was late night and rainy weather in Amsterdam when we finished our meeting. We decided to push a little harder this "content-marketing-thing". Even though we had blog and posts we struggled to get traffic, so we had to come up with something. Somewhere at the end of the meeting I asked my colleague and friend:
"Why don't we try out facebook advertising?"
We had a facebook fanpage with nearly 1200 likes, so that seemed like a good idea. However, we barely had any experience with boosting posts, and he said;
"That should not be too expensive. Let's give it a try!"
We jumped on it, right then and there... and ohh my God, we did so much stupid stuff. But you shouldn't, so here's a guide to avoid the mistakes we made.
That's something we knew we had to do, but that's also something that is easier said than done. Basically, we came up with different target audiences based on location and interest. We set up the campaigns and waited for the results. After a day or so we'd see the results and eliminate the poorly performing audiences.
That sounds great but here's what to avoid:
You might have heard - just like us - that the X way to write things, or Y is the perfect headline, but the reality is that there's no such thing as "the-perfect-headline". It can differ based on the topic, the audience or other things happening in the world. Therefore the only way you can figure out which is the best is to test it.
In the beginning we would craft a headline and stick with it - that is not effective. Now we've figured out a better process using the following steps:
Visuals are an important part of social media. This is what catches people's attention. But this is also the point where we made our biggest mistake. Especially with Facebook, you can: a) upload an image and write a link or b) post a link and a preset image will automatically load.
But. There's a big difference between these two.
The image you upload separately might look cool, but if someone clicks on it, it will only show a bigger image in Facebook's image viewer.
We ended up getting a lot of clicks, not on our site but on the image. That was definitely not the goal.
So we learned our lesson and started to post links using the preset images. Those got more clicks, sure. (Update: I guess facebook also realized this issue so they made it easier to post these link-type images. Just copy and paste a link to share and you'll see the new feature.)
Changing the link's preset image is a point where most of us never get to, but then we discovered our magic trick. We started to test different images and measure their click trough rate.
Disclaimer: Being a designer helped a lot at this part.
After a few iterations we realized a 267% increase in our CTR by using a certain type of image.
I believe there are at least 4 reasons.
Boosting posts on facebook to accelerate your content marketing engine can be an effective method, if you use it right. Here are some of the key recommendations that worked for us.
Test everything and test quickly. Use images, not as a separate image but as part of your link, and use our magic trick if you wish.
If you're not familiar with design tools, feel free to reach out and I'll be happy to send you the template I use. If you liked this strategy and it worked for you, please write about it in the comments below. Also, write down if you have other power tactics that work. To get more useful stuff like this, subscribe to our newsletter. Also, if you want to learn about App Store Optimization, we just started a free email course, make sure to sign up for that.