Boosting Posts & Advertising on Social Media

It’s very long.. very very long.. and very detailed.

Before we get started, it’s very important to know that there is a difference between a social media ad and boosting a post. A social media ad will not appear on your own page where as a boosted post will. With an ad you can be very specific on who you are targeting and it is quite advanced. Now don’t get me wrong, you can fine tune you’re targeting with a boosted post as well but it’s… basic.

When should I use one or the other? The answer to this question isn’t always an easy one. It really depends on what your goals are for advertising and what audiences you want to reach.

Lets start with boosted posts

To start, your page has to be set up as a business page, whether on Facebook or Instagram. You won’t be able to boost a post unless this is set up. You should also notice that your Instagram business page and Facebook business page are linked. This is because Facebook owns Instagram and Instagram will use your account details (credit card etc.) from Facebook to pay for a boosted post. You will also find all of your receipts for Instagram posts in your Facebook account.. but more on that later 🙂

So, a boosted post is the most basic form of social media advertising. They are created by putting budget behind a post that you have already posted on your page. If you have a business page set up, click into any post and down in the right hand corner you will see the word “Boost” or “Promote” depending on what social media platform you are on.

Let’s start with Instagram..

When you click on a picture you’ll see “Promote”.. click it, this will start the boosting process. If it’s your first time, it might direct you to sign in with Facebook. The first page is going to ask you where you want to send people..


Pick which ever one applies to you. The next section is going to ask you to select an audience.. this is VITAL! Instagram will give you an automatic audience based on your current followers, if you want to take the lazy way out, click that. If you want to target a specific audience for your brand, click “create your own”. Under this you will have the option to…

  • Name your audience
  • Choose their location
  • Their Interests
  • Age and Gender

For example, if I was a freelance make-up artist in Cork looking to promote the fact that I had appointments available on Saturday, I would do the following…

    • Name: Saturday Clients
    • Location: Local, 20km radius or target specific areas like Cork city centre, Blackpool, Mahon, Sunday’s Well, Blackrock, Ballincollig, Blarney etc.
    • Interests: Makeup, wedding makeup, fashion and makeup, makeup tutorials, beauty makeup, eye shadow, etc.
    • Age and Gender: 18 – 50 Female.



This will decrease the audience reach but it will be more specific. You could reach 5000 people with no set targeting and 2 people might be interested in your post. You could reach 500 people with set targeting and 50 people could be interested in your post. Quality over quantity. If you’re trying to grow your following by boosting posts, you’re going to want to attract an audience that actually has an interest in what you do and will engage with your content.

The next step is setting a budget. This is entirely up to you. Play around with it! For example I might say €5 daily for two days. Obviously the more budget you put on the post the higher the reach it will have.


The post on its own would only reach a very small portion of your current audience which could be as little as 1%! Boosting the post allows you to ensure a much larger audience of your choice sees the post in their news feed. Boosted posts are typically used when the goal is to achieve audience engagement such as post likes, shares and comments. However, if you’re looking for a more customized promotion option, this is where Facebook Ads might work better for you.

Boosting Posts on Facebook

Do people still do this? Ha!

So, scroll down your own business page until you find a post you want to boost. Again, on the lower, right corner you’ll see “Boost Post”. Follow the steps below:

  • “Add Button” .. this is optional. It will appear on your post if you want the audience to take an action like go to your website or send you a message. Using the same example as before I’m going to use a button to allow people to send a message book an appointment.
  • Audience – again Facebook will have a preset list for you. If you have made an audience on Instagram it is automatically linked up here so if you click “see all” you will find it in there 🙂

  • Set budget and choose duration – similar to Instagram.
  • Make payment and you’re done.

It is more or less the exact same as Instagram, very straight forward!

Now, let us move onto the advanced side of things..

Facebook & Instagram Ads

Facebook and Instagram ads are a more advanced way to advertise and will require a Facebook ad manager account. You can set one up here.  The great thing about Facebook ads is you can duplicate them to appear on Instagram as well so you don’t have to do the same work twice 🙂

Facebook ads offer the greatest number of options for advertising. The type of ad you choose to use will depend on what the goal of your campaign is. I will show you this in a second.

Another benefit to running ads over boosted posts is the ability to add an optional call to action button promoting actions such as ‘shop now’, ‘sign up’, ‘download’ and ‘contact us’ to name a few.

You can choose to have your ad appear like a post on someones news feed or an ad at the side of the page. I personally prefer the ones that look like posts.

Ok, let me bring you through the creating an ad process..

  • Step 1: Choose your objective (I’m going to continue to use the same example as above).
    1.JPG2I chose the “send message” objective because I want people to reach out to me to book an appointment. I then named my campaign and chose budget optimization (highlighted in the above picture). The Split Test is great for when it’s your first time creating an ad, you can test your image, your targeting and delivery and see what works best. Because I know exactly who my audience are, I chose to optimize my budget so I’d get the most value for my money. I then set my budget to €5 a day (big spender).
  • Step 2: Selecting your audience. You can create a brand new one or choose an existing. I’m going to use my existing one.
  • Step 3: Choosing your placement. This is where your ad will be shown to the audience. Facebook will have set up an automatic one for you going by who you defined as your audience or you can set up your own. As always I avoid clicking anything automatic as you have more control when you choose yourself.

(see all the freedom once you click edit?)

  • Step 4: Setting your budget’s start and end date. So, I’ve already set my €5 daily budget above, now I need to choose the duration. I’ve decided to choose Monday – Friday to allow people to book in their appointment before Saturday.
  • Step 5: You’re going to choose the accounts the ad will be posted to. If you’re like me you’re hooked up to about 7 different business pages ha! You need to chose one and also choose your Instagram account.7
  • Step 6: You need to pick the format of your ad. Are you going to have one image, multiple images, a video or a slideshow? I’m going to chose one image as an example.


  • Step 7: Is your ad set up. This will show you what your ad will look like. Take time to write out your caption, remembering to keep it short and sweet! We have the attention span of goldfish! .. (really wanted to say goldfishes there but I dunno is it a word? haha).


  • Step 8: Because I chose the message option, I now get to design my message template. Again, this is very straight forward 🙂


  • Step 9: Click confirm and you’re done 🙂

Simple! 🙂

One last thing I want to mention is receipts for your ads and boosted posts. These are obviously very important if you are using a company card to boost posts. To find them follow the below:

  1. On the top left hand corner of your ads manager account you will see the words “Ad Manager” click on this and then click on “Billing”.
  2. This will bring you to a list of all of your invoices.
  3. Click into anyone of these and you can download and print 🙂

As usual, if you have any questions, slide into my DM’s on Insta or drop me an email 🙂

Until next time,

April x



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