Facebook rolls out ‘promote’ button to more U.S. pages, provides details on how it works

Facebook is rolling out its new “promote” button for pages with more than 400 fans in the U.S., according to the Facebook Marketing page.

The social network began testing the feature last month to make it easier for pages to increase the reach of their posts without going through the ad dashboard. Although the promote button simplifies the process, some page owners will resent the idea of having to pay for distribution to fans they’ve already acquired. Facebook seems to be becoming more aggressive about monetizing pages, but the rise of Sponsored Stories and promoted posts also stems from the reality that there is an increasing number of stories competing for placement in News Feed. Pages, like users, are not able to reach all of their followers organically.

For page owners willing to pay to ensure that more fans see their messages, promoted posts have the benefit of displaying in fans’ News Feeds rather than in ad units on the side of the page. Facebook also says friends of the people who interact with promoted posts will be more likely to see the story in their feeds. The cost per reached fan seems to vary by page, but Facebook would not comment on what factors may influence price. The minimum spend appears to be $5, which can reach between 20 and 2,200 fans, based on different screenshots we’ve seen of the feature. This is a lifetime budget, not a daily budget.

Posts can be promoted for up to three days from when the post was first created. Older posts are not eligible for this type of promotion in order to maintain relevance in users’ feeds. Promoted posts, like standard posts, can be targeted by location and language.

User flow for creating a promoted post

After making a post, click the “promote” button. Set a budget.

Clicking “more options” brings up details about the duration of the campaign and how page owners will be billed. There isn’t a way to change the date and time of when promoted posts will run, but page owners can pause and restart the campaign manually. Page owners can change their billing method by clicking the gear icon in the bottom left corner of the dialog.

After clicking “save,” the promoted post will be reviewed by Facebook’s ad team before beginning to get paid distribution. In the meantime, the post will appear in other users’ feeds as it would normally. Once the campaign begins, page owners will see reach details on the bottom of the posts on their Timeline. Hovering over the metrics will provide further detail.

Clicking on the “promoted for $X” button will offer insights on how many Likes, comments, shares or other actions were taken after users saw a promoted post. Page owners will also have the option to stop the promotion from here.

Promoted posts will appear in fans’ News Feeds with the word “sponsored” at the bottom.

Image credit: Facebook Help Center