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$1 Facebook Ad Trick (Beat EdgeRank)

Recently, I’ve been quoted in a popular eBook about the $1 Ad Trick I learned from my friend up north Matt Astifan. People loved it, but they also had plenty of questions – so I made a tutorial video.

The main purpose of this technique is to spend as little as $1 per day, and get the content from your Facebook Business page in front of as many within your existing target audience as possible.

By default, Facebook uses something called EdgeRank – which basically just means they see how popular your content will be and show it to about 16% of your audience. If it’s getting a lot of likes and comments, your score goes up and more people see it.

We wanted to implement a way to reach a drastically higher percentage (near 100% of people who log on to Facebook within your targeting parameters), but didn’t cost very much at all. The solution was this exact strategy, enjoy!

Resource: Facebook Power Editor

UPDATE: Screenshot Example

Screen Shot 2013-11-11 at 10.17.18 AM

A few of you are having trouble getting exposure of your content after getting the ad approved. We wanted to include this screenshot to so you the results of what happens when you successfully implement this strategy.

Not only did our post get in front of 622 people, but the organic results were actually improved to 329 organic over 222 organic of the prior post.

Suggestions if you’re having trouble getting exposure.

1.) Increase your daily bid temporarily to “signal” to Facebook that you’re looking to get serious about advertising on the platform. This is anecdotal but several people I know who consistently launch Facebook campaigns do a large budget up front to get an ad some initial traction. It appears to work.

2.) You may not be in a “competitive niche”, but you may have an audience who has other targeting factors that include them in a competitive niche. As with all strategies your mileage will vary, but play around with different CPM pricing to see if one of them “tips” and starts getting your ad shown.

There is no evidence so far to support the idea that Facebook actually closed off this from working, but it is apparent to me at least that there’s a wide variety in the size, type, and interest of the audience that every one is trying this strategy on.

Contest Success Thumbnail

Comments

  1. Man that was GREAT, will for sure give it a try, thanks!

  2. Thanks for this video travis.
    Do you promote an optintab or do you promote a post which sends the people outside of fb to optin?

    • This method works well to boost visibility and engagement of all your posts. So that includes quality content, images (to get likes and extended reach), tab based opt-ins, contests both in or out of Facebook etc.

      It honestly doesn’t much that much if the traffic is in or our of Facebook in my experience. Of course, we’re fans of adding contests into the mix because they convert well and draw in the extended network of your fans.

  3. Bill Joyce says:

    Pretty neat. Very interesting, especially with under 1K like

    Please send more tips

    Bill

  4. Bravo Travis.

    In all seriousness, one of the best outlines and vid-tutorial I think I’ve ever watched.

    On-point advice, clearly covered, without any hype. Banking-it-forward, so to speak.

    Thanks again Travis,

    Michael

  5. Nice video Travis, thanks. Going to try this for one of my niche FB pages to make sure we get in their face! Getting more and more into FB ads, there is so much you can do.

    • Awesome Bill, keep in mind though that you don’t want to shove something down the throat of your audience.

      My pro-tip is to keep an eye on the frequency # inside your dashboard to make sure you aren’t hitting the same people too frequently.

      Feel free to report back on your experiences though.

  6. Very clear and precise tutorial. I’ve done something similar to this before back a couple of years ago but a lot of the Facebook ad interface has changed (such as the options and such forth) and I’m glad that you actually showed a working example that is easy to scale up and get results. I run a news blog and will try this to see if my posts receive more likes for them. I may start out with a $5/day budget and hopefully those 5k views will turn into at least 100 likes among all my posts posted for the day.

  7. It looks very interesting but here in Canada FB charges $1.90-3.45 per thousand views… What do I tweak?

  8. Done!
    Will let you know how it went.
    Thanks so much,
    Llyane

  9. i have tried this like 2 months ago

    1 $ a day and tried to get some clickbank affiliate sales and failed ..got traffic ..but nothing converted … if you can master conversion i suppose ..i dont have the money and time to split test etc …bahhhhh

    sheldon

  10. Hi Travis, Thank you for a very informative video.

    I have tried to work it out, but how do I delete a campaign in the power editor or is there another way?

    Many Thanks,

    Gray

  11. Hi, Travis
    I use the ad the way you instructed.
    My audience is between 8-900 people.
    However, I see 0 in the ‘ad reach’ – how do I know how many people get to see the posts at any given time?
    Thank you so much!
    Llyane

    • The same here. It seems, you can set up the ad this way, no problem. Except FB will not show it, unless you increase the budget to basically match their regular “Boost Post” option (where the minimum is $5). After all, from FB perspective, it makes sense. Who would use “Boost Post” option for $5 to reach a few hundred people who liked your page, if you could just run an ad for $1 and show it on their newsfeed that way?

      • Every niche will be different. It’s possible that everyone in your audience is also in a highly competitive niche.

        How big is your fan base? That’s also a factor. You’ll probably have to budget a few more bucks per day to hit size able percentage if your audience is bigger.

        Keep in mind that bid prices are a max, not a “this will 100% be spent every day”. It might be, but it might not.

        • Not sure if the niche is competitive, it’s just a generic ‘family’ niche. And the total number of people who’d be reached is only around 500 (USA and Canada). According FB, the recommended budget to promote my post to them is $4.90-$9.00 As of now, the ad reach is at zero. I may try to increase the CPM to $5. That way, I could compare the results with the $5 boost post option (I’ll see what the reach is and what the final cost is). It still may end up a better option than the Boost Post.

  12. Travis,

    You just gave me the final piece to the puzzle!

    Thank you very very very much.

    P.S Replacing the “Save” button with upload and download fields is downright diabolical!

    Yours enlightened,

    Brian

  13. Tried it step by step and the ad got approved by my first post got 25 views out of 597 (100% organic). We’ll try again and slowly raise the bid price to see if I can saturate each post.

  14. This just isn’t working for me. I have a daily budget of $2, entered a CPM of $1 and ads are approved and running, but just not being displayed! I’ve got a reach of 9 people in 3 days out of 2300 fans. It’s not exactly a competitive niche – I blog about sewing! Seems others are having the same issue.
    I’ll try increasing the daily budget and CPM rate, and report back. Maybe Facebook have caught on to this opportunity and brought it to a close.

    • We’re finding that this works best for people who are getting *some* engagement to start with, and just amplifies the effects.

      We’ve updated the blog post with screenshot proof that it works on our own Fan page.

      • I increased my CPM to $5, and even on popular posts with between 400-600 organic reach out of 2300 fans, I only then got another 30 from paid reach. It seems FB doesn’t want my money! It’s a mystery to me. Glad to hear its been working well for others.

        • Are you actually saturating your spend, or is Facebook just deciding not to show the ad?

          You may want to allow the ad to go global instead of to defined countries if you’re having a hard time getting exposure.

          • I’m only spending a few cents because although I have set a high CPM, my advert isn’t being shown. Only 2 paid reach yesterday. I have set up for my top 10 countries in terms of audience and my potential reach is showing as high – but still not working for me although my organic reach continues to be fairly good.
            Could it be time of day? My post goes live the morning. Would it be better later in the day? I wish there was a FB advertising rep I could speak to, to help me get better results for my budget.

          • Check your new insights dashboard. It should show you when your users are online. Try post about 2 hours before the peak.

            There are so many factors that could be influencing its ability to show though. Try the timed posting first, and make an engaging one to get some organic signals that it’s good content.

            I have noticed that people with content that doesn’t get much interaction, Facebook will either not show the content via a sponsorship or charge an absurd price for it.

  15. EPIC TRAVIS… once again mate, thank you very much… let’s catch up soon on skype…

  16. Hi, Travis
    Since I’ve used your type of ad, I am getting more LIKE’s.
    This is odd, considering that I’m advertising only to my fans.
    What are your thoughts on this?
    I also want to tell you that I finally started to see a reach and activity coming from the ad.
    Thanks so much!

    • When people like, comment and share your posts it will create new stories in the newsfeed of their friends.

      This gets you in front of a new audience and it sounds like the new audience decided to like you organically ๐Ÿ™‚

      • This is better than advertising to the friends directly, right?
        With over 100 likes yesterday I will not complain, but the thought keeps bugging me..
        Thanks, Travis
        Llyane

        • Correct, it’s better than advertising directly to friends because the new exposure is organic.

          A fair number of page owners complain of hate comments when advertising aggressively outside of their cored audience.

          People can get touchy about seeing something often when they haven’t liked your page, especially when it says “sponsored” in the corner.

  17. Brian Wideman says:

    Travis,

    Is this applicable for a page with over 350k fans? Or is this really only for smaller pages?

  18. This is genius. It’s genius cuz it’s simple, easy and autopilot! LOVE IT!

    -James Wedmore

  19. Linda Warner says:

    Hi Travis,

    I really appreciated the conciseness and clarity of this video. Thank you! I immediately put it in motion, 11/29/13 and it was approved rather quickly… but Facebook has not rendered the most recent post to anyone. Zip. I just now set the campaign day price to $8 with a $4 CPM to see if it moves at all. I used the countries US, UK, Australia, New Zealand. I have around 1,000 in those countries. The niche is same-sex marriage, which is not a “hot” market. Would love to know what I should modify next. $2/$1, $4/2, $5/2, 6/3 all did not work.

    I appreciate any insight you might have. Thanks

    • Have you been getting notifications that Facebook is approving your ads?

      I’d try removing the country restrictions before going crazy with the CPM and budget rates. What’s the starting size of your audience?

      • Linda Warner says:

        Sorry to have missed this Travis!

        1. Yes, got notification that the ads were approved
        2. I have 2, 278 likes, of which less than a 1,000 were from the target audience that I specified: US, UK, NZ, AU.
        I have other likes from Brazil and Argentina, but I was not targeting them in this.
        3. At $8 daily/4CPM, in over 24 hours, it has a “campaign reach” of 11, a “total estimated audience” of 300 and has cost 2 cents.

        Thanks so much and I appreciate the suggestion.

        I will lower the rates to $2 daily /$1 CPM and take off the country restrictions.

        • Sounds like maybe your most active users are outside of the tight targeting. I’d be curious to see how things change after removing the country restrictions.

          • Linda Warner says:

            Travis, that is correct. This was actually a cool exercise as I could see how my total audience was impacted as I added countries.

            So the actual number of people I have in US, UK, AZ, NZ was 300! And when I went into Ads Manager there was a message saying:

            “The audience you are targeting may be too small for your ad or sponsored story to receive any impressions” and they wanted $5.18-$10 for that crowd.

            I only had 300 that were in that target group!

            This message did not appear in Power Editor so good to check both.

            Anyway, I added back in all the countries, lowered it to $3/1.50 to see what happens. I will keep you posted.

            Question: I am not doing a “sponsored story” but is that what FB calls what we are doing? Thank you!

          • Yes, it’s basically just a sponsored post (sponsored stories can be several different kinds of things). This is like a hybrid between “boost post” and “sponsored stories”.

  20. GREAT idea Travis – thanks for sharing … meanwhile, my first event from Contest Domination is rocking! Love it!

  21. Linda Warner says:

    Hi Travis,

    Just wanted to give you the update you requested. So, I took off all country restrictions and includied all the countries where I have “Likes” – and then Facebook started showing it. I have it set at $3/day with a $1.5 CPM. I am getting some engagement, which is awesome. It still has only been shown to 749/2274 Likes. However I have 47 comments or likes and it only cost $1.42 so I am cool with that! To-date I have been sharing other Pages articles or articles that I found on the internet. I now plan to write my own content in upcoming weeks. I am hoping to get more people “talking about it” now, so that my original content might get more exposure. We shall see.

    Facebook recently acknowledged that “We expect organic distribution of an individual page’s posts to gradually decline over time as we continually work to make sure people have a meaningful experience on the site.” The issue I have with this is that if people don’t see it at all, how can Facebook assess it as “meaningful”? With your approach Travis, posts will at least get some exposure and we can learn then what is appealing and what is not, without breaking the bank.

    http://adage.com/article/digital/facebook-admits-organic-reach-brand-posts-dipping/245530/

    I appreciate your feedback, your staying with me as I sorted this out, and of course deep gratitude for your original post which was most excellent.

    Thanks Travis!

    • Love hearing that you’re getting reach and finding success. Just keep feeding your audience good content ๐Ÿ™‚

      We’ve been testing some new contest methods to spike engagement scores, get more page likes and most importantly generate leads.

      Hoping to post another quick tip style case study when we have some good contrasting information to share.

      • Linda Warner says:

        Hi Travis,

        Cool. I have yet to have a contest…. needless to say your product(s) are on my very short list for when I do. I look forward to reading your upcoming contest methods/engagement article!

        Best,
        Linda

  22. Linda Warner says:

    Hi Travis,

    I am wondering if you have heard of this error message.
    “Failed to create advert “Visibility Ad”: The campaign budget you’ve set is too low.
    You bid $3.03 but a daily budget needs to be at least twice your cost per click (CPC) bid or $6.06.”

    I was helping two friends with this and both got the same message yesterday.
    I am using CPM, not CPC, and second, the total number of likes on each of the pages was 176 and 153 respectively.

    I had the campaign at 6.06 and the ad cost at 3.03 (.03 higher than the highest amount Facebook estimated for the ad.)

    I got the CPC error message for two different people, looking at two different ads.
    I followed the exact same model I used for my page (which is working just fine).

    Any thoughts as to how to correct?

    Thanks

  23. Hi, Travis
    This trick doesn’t work anymore.
    FB doesn’t do it automatically, I have to manually change the ad to the creative of the newest post.
    Is there any way around it?
    Thank you so much!

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