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Boosted Posts vs Facebook Ads: Which Will Get You More Sales?

facebook ads Jun 21, 2024
Boosted Posts vs Facebook Ads: Which will get you more sales?

Businesses worldwide are struggling to reach their audiences organically across Facebook and Instagram.

Chances are you’ve been spending some decent hours posting but it hasn’t been worth the time investment.

Unfortunately your posts only get shown to a fraction of your audience despite how good your content is.

This is soon going to get harder with Meta set to charge free accounts for reach.

If you want to get your offer in front of a larger audience fast, then you’ll need to invest in paid advertising.

When it comes to Facebook Ads, there are two types of paid ads you can run: 

  1. Boosted Posts
  2. Facebook (and Instagram) Ads

 There are distinct differences between the two that can significantly impact your results.

 Let’s break it down.

 

BOOSTED POSTS

A boosted post is a post on your Facebook timeline or Instagram profile that you pay to promote to a wider audience directly from the platform.

It’s an easy way to get in front of more people who may or may not your business.

When you boost a post, you’ll be asked the following questions to optimise the ad including:

  1. What you goal is e.g., more profile or website visits, more messages or sales etc?
  2. Who you want to see your ad e.g., new versus your existing audience?
  3. What is your budget for the lifetime of the boosted post?
  4. How long do you want to run the boosted post?

As ads experts, we’ve witnessed a lot of accounts that don’t get a lot of value out of using boosted posts, but we will go through some of the pros and cons through the lens of the user. 

 

Advantages of Boosted Posts

Visibility

Boosted posts are an easy way to help your content reach more people fast.

Ease of use

Boosted posts are simple to set-up directly from your Facebook timeline or Instagram feed. With just a few clicks, you can select your target audience, budget and ad duration in as little as two minutes.

Engagement Focus

The primary objective of boosting a post is to increase engagement metrics such as likes, comments or shares. It’s an effective way to spark conversations and interactions around your content.

Content-Centric

Boosted posts are based on your existing posts. This makes them tend to be more organic and native to the Facebook or Instagram platform. This may feel more authentic or familiar to your audience which may encourage them to interact.

Management

Boosted posts don’t require the cost of an expert to set them up (but you don’t generally make the return either). You don’t necessarily need an expert with Facebook Ads but it will certainly make the world of difference to your results. 

 

Disadvantages of Boosted Posts

Less Organic

Boosted posts still show as ads so your audience will know you paid for the reach as opposed to it happening organically.

Limited Customisation

Boosted posts have less control and customisation when compared to creating Facebook or Instagram posts within the Facebook Ads Manager (particularly when it comes to targeting and ad placements).

Less Creative Options

Boosted posts have limited options when it comes to the design of posts e.g., slideshows, carousels etc.

Testing and Optimisation

Boosted posts don’t have the ability to test and optimise audiences, placements and ad creative which means you can’t bring your cost per lead down and increase your results with tweaks and learnings over time.

AI Access

Boosted posts can’t access the AI features available in the Facebook Ads Manager that help you create improved graphics and text options fast.

The only time we’d recommend using Boosted Posts is to grow your Instagram following and Facebook or Instagram engagement. In our experience, these ads work well to direct people to your profile and follow or increase like, comments etc.

Posts boosted from an Apple iOS device will soon face a 30% surcharge – another reason to move to creating ads in the Facebook Ads Manager. Find out more here.

 

 

FACEBOOK ADS

Facebook (and Instagram) Ads are created in the Ads Manager. This software is extremely powerful. It gives you a number of customisation options including ad targeting, placement and creative that will help you better achieve your business goals.

 

Advantages of Facebook Ads

Advanced Targeting

Facebook Ads give you the ability to customise your audience targeting. You have three audience tools that allow you to target new and existing audiences to better reach your dream target market.

  • Core – target people that don’t yet know you. Audience defined by demographics, location, interests and behaviour.

  • Lookalike – target people that don’t know you. Audiences are created from a mirror image of your best performing existing audiences.

  • Custom – existing audience across your social platforms, website and email list (think retargeting).

Defining your audiences using these tools can significantly increase the effectiveness and relevance of your ads.

Diverse Ad Formats

Unlike boosted posts, Facebook Ads has a variety of ad formats to choose from including carousel ads, video ads, slideshow ads, plus more. This allows you to choose the format that best suits your campaign objective and creative assets.

Objective-Oriented

Facebook Ads are designed to achieve specific campaign objectives such as sales, lead generation, engagement, website traffic or brand awareness. Using Facebook Ads, you can better align your marketing strategy with your business goals.

Ad Placement

With the Facebook Ads Manager, you have greater control over where your ads appear across Facebook, Instagram, the Audience Network and Messenger down to things like the feed versus the story placement option. This allows you to tailor your ad placements to align with your audiences’ browsing habits and preferences.

Comprehensive Analytics

Facebook Ads provides detailed analytics for ad performance, allowing you to track key metrics such as reach, engagement, sales, cost per action and the Return On Ad Spend (ROAS). These insights allow you to measure the effectiveness of your campaigns and make data-driven optimisations.

Testing and Optimisation

Given you have more control over your audience targeting, placements and creative, this means you can test different elements of your campaigns to increase your leads and sales and reduce your costs – perhaps the most powerful feature of the Ads Manager. This in turn allows you to learn more about your ideal audience.

 

Disadvantages of Boosted Posts

Steeper Learning Curve

Given the capabilities of the Facebook Ads Manager and the results you can achieve, it has a steeper learning curve. This may require either getting training in the software or using an expert to run your ads. We recommend selecting either option to ensure your ads are set-up right from the start so you get the results you desire, otherwise you’ll end up wasting money.

Bigger Time Investment

Within the Facebook Ads Manager, the set-up will take longer especially because the ads are created from scratch rather than using an existing post. If you’d like to test different creative, you’ll also need to different creative variations.

Remember: the Facebook Ads Manager does have AI tools to help reduce the work required.

Ever-changing 

The Facebook Ads Manager has regular updates so it will require a little more work to keep on top of these changes.

 

WHICH STRATEGY IS RIGHT FOR YOUR BUSINESS?

Ultimately using the Facebook Ads Manager is the better option. Boosting posts is no comparison.

We only recommend boosting posts to grow your Instagram following as the return-on-investment simply isn’t there (they don’t convert into leads and sales).

 Consider boosted posts if you want to: 

  • Reaching an audience fast but aren’t necessarily looking to convert them
  • Increase engagement on a post
  • Improve visibility of your best posts
  • Promote competitions or giveaways

It’s always best to boost posts that are performing well organically. This will help push the boosted post to more people for a lower cost.

Whenever you’re looking to make money, invest in Facebook Ads.

 Consider Facebook Ads if you want to:

  • Generate more leads
  • Grow your sales
  • Grow your website traffic
  • Scale your business

Facebook Ads only has a more comprehensive approach to reaching and converting your audience, it also has more advanced targeting options, diverse ad formats and measurable campaign objectives.

The myriad of customisation, testing and optimising capabilities within the Ads Manager make it far superior in generating leads and sales at scale (at the lowest possible cost).

Deciding on whether to use Boosted Posts versus Facebook Ads all comes down to your business goals.

If you’re looking to scale your business, Facebook Ads is the answer.

 

IS YOUR BRAND READY FOR FACEBOOK ADS?

If you aren’t sure if you’re ready for Facebook Ads, we have created a Starter Checklist so you can determine your brand’s readiness before investing a cent. Download your free copy here.

Ready to get started with Facebook Ads? We offer a range of services from low-cost workshops to done-for-you management, to cater for all business stages. Find out more here.

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