Boosting a post will help you reach a larger audience. That audience can be people who already like your page or everyone on Facebook. When you boost a post to your existing fans, it appears higher in their news feed so they are more likely to see it. You can also use an existing post as an advertisement to a targeted audience on Facebook.
Now, the goal of a boosted post is the same as an ad. You want to pick something engaging and interesting in hopes that people either interact with it or click through to your website. As Facebook continues to grow and focus more and more on advertisements, it's evident the model is becoming pay-to-play. This is a GOOD thing, as paying a little money will eliminate a lot of competition.
If you want to compete, even though you've already identified a group of fans, you may need to boost posts to get their engagement. Boosting is done from your fan page.
Let's use this post. This went out to all of our fans, but they may not have seen it. I may also decide that I want to use this page post for other people on Facebook. You should be posting often, and you do not want to promote just any post. When deciding on which post to boost think about two things:
1) Can this post convert to business?
2) Does this post generate a lot of interest?
If one of these things is true, then it is great to promote. If both of them are true, then you would be a fool not to.
The first one is obvious. If a post is about a property you are listing or a reason for somebody to hire you, then that is the most direct line to business, so boost away.
The second is less obvious to a new user. Facebook posts are mean to give you publicity. Posting does that. A good post functions like wildfire. If you like, share, or comment on a post, your friends see that, and if those people do the same, their friends will see it, and so on. The reach of that post will multiply like wildfire. If you recognize that a post has that potential, then think of boosting the post as tossing some gasoline on the wildfire.
If you boost a post without that potential, then you will boost a post that has 10 interaction to have 100. Whereas if you boost a post that can get 100 interactions independently, it will now have 10000.
To get started, I'll choose Boost Post in the bottom right-hand corner.
Here you'll get a pop-up window. Please note, depending on how many fans you have, you may see a different screen. But the configuration should be the same regardless.
At the top, we have the option to modify our audience. In this case, Facebook has preselected to show this ad to people who like our page, and their friends. This is usually the option that most people select when getting started boosting posts. You can also choose people through targeting, which I'll do now. Facebook is going to show us an audience. This is similar to what you saw in the Ads Create tool.
In this case, they've pre-selected a default audience of men and women between 18 and 65, located in the United States. That's an extremely large and broad audience. We can go through and select countries, age, gender, interests, and even name the audience that we define. Once you've got that dialed in, choose Save, or in this case, I'll choose cancel to leave this window. Now, with most everything on Facebook, as you modify your criteria, the estimated reach will change. In this case, we have a very broad audience, so this reach is very small. If we want to reach more people that we care about, we would change our targeting.
Now I'm going to go up and reselect people who like the page and their friends. You'll notice that the estimated people reached changes. This bar indicates that our targeting is much more specific. The further the line is to the right, the more specific our audience is. You'll also have the option to adjust your budget.
You will see that we can change the duration for how long we want to boost this post. It's pre-selected to 3 days, but I could change that from anywhere from 1 to 7 days. That's the length that this post will run. It will divide your money over the course of the days you choose. You can see here it says $200 over 7 days, which would equate to $28.57 per day. Facebook automatically does that calculation for you. You can also change your payment method, and then once you're done, you'll select Boost Post and your ad will be created.
I'm a big fan of boosted posts. They're easy, and depending on your audience, an extremely inexpensive way to gain attention for your message. If you have a large fan base already, use boosted posts on your most important content to increase exposure. Just because your fans like your page, doesn't mean they'll see your content. Facebook still limits what's in their news feed.