Mmmm, Facebook Page Post Ads – one of the several other white meats of the FB advertising realm. A delectable combination of clever community management and calculating contextual PPC, Facebook Page Post Ads represent a powerful supplement to traditional social advertising that can help manufacture the warm fuzzy feeling of FB organic dominance many brands, understandably, covet. In simple terms, a Facebook Page Post Ad is an ad unit in the FB Ads platform that promotes a particular Wall Post made by a Page. Content cannot be doctored from the original Wall post (ergo its organic nature) and targeting capabilities are identical to those of reg’lar ol’ FB ads.
In their natural habitat (sponsored results), Facebook Page Post Ads look like this:
Facebook Page Post Ad
What looks like body copy is actually the editorial of the post pulled directly from the Wall (again, without the ability to alter). Beneath it is what looks like an ad image, but is really the original Wall post thumbnail (also prepopulated and un-editable), the headline, or title of the link shared in the wall post, and a simple display URL. Looks like a Facebook ad, smells like a Facebook ad – but is, in fact, a piece of organic Facebook Wall content promoted via the Facebook Ads platform. Marty Weintraub’s Undressing The Secret Of Facebook: Paid Organic Is The New Black provides a top-down look (pun somewhat unintended) at a “cocktail of paid ad units in Facebook that can drastically amplify organic prominence” inside of sponsored results. In this post, we’ll zero-in on 3 essential optimization tactics to help ensure both your organic Wall post and, by extension, Facebook Page Post Ad, totally scream (i.e.: perform admirably). Note: We’re moving forward assuming that the Community Manager is using a Page Post Ad to promote a Wall Post featuring a link to a piece of content, rather than just a “Hi, Community! How are you?” type-post. If you are planning to use a Facebook Page Post ad to promote a straight-up “Hi, Community!” post, Part I of this post is pretty much the only one that applies to you. But apply it does!
Part I: Editorial – “What’s on your mind?”
Drop in a link to your content of choice just as you would for any other organic Wall post. Thoughtfully fine-tune it by removing the messy URL string once attached and adding a bit of editorial that’s succinct yet informative, keyword-rich yet creative. You want to attract your audience while maintaining clarity and relevance. Speaking of your audience: while they do want to know “what’s on your mind,” the Facebook Ad platform only cares about the first 90 characters. Your editorial mimics the body copy in a Facebook Page Post Ad, and it does have a character cut-off, even though the organic side of Facebook doesn’t provide a “[#] characters left” ticker. Ninety characters – that’s what our tests prove you’ve got. So make them count. Remember when crafting this editorial to channel your inner community manager darling and PPC ad writing ninja. Aim for informative meets enticing: something that can stand alone like an ad, but is also clever, click-worthy, and cool enough for your community. (Since you’re without a character ticker, click over to LetterCount.com for lightning speed on-the-fly character counts. Jenky-lookin’ UI, but it gets the job done.) Exceed the character limit at your own peril. FB will truncate past 90 characters and replace with vague ellipsis.
Part II: Headline / Title – Yes, You Can Edit This!
Drop in a link. Let it attach. Click on the bold headline / title. Behold! An editable field not all community managers know can be played with. If you’re not crazy about the prepopulated headline Facebook pulls down from the content source, or if you want to test the popularity of the existing title vs. something new, go ahead and change it up.
Do your best to keep it to 70 characters, or face the ambiguously… noncommittal… ellipsis…
Part III: Thumbnail – Eye Candy with an Edge
This optimization tactic is pretty straightforward but can go overlooked. When selecting an image for your wall Post from the pre-populated thumbnails, choose the prettiest, biggest, most applicable one. This will be the graphical element of your Page Post Ad and should be chosen with care. Toggle through the thumbnails FB pulls down to find one that nabs up as much visual real estate as much possible, but don’t sacrifice relevance for size. For example, don’t choose an unrelated badge icon over a slightly smaller author avatar. Again – approach this from a contextual PPC perspective. If you have the option, pick an optimized image that will entice the click. Thirteen precious community members agree– she’s quite the dame. Happy Wall Posting / Page Post Promoting!