Facebook Ads vs. Boosted Posts: What’s the Difference?
Here’s what you need to know about the differences and similarities between Facebook Ads and Facebook Boosted Posts and which option is best suited to accomplishing your business' objective.
What Are Facebook/Instagram Ads?
Facebook Ads are paid advertisements that are created through the Facebook Ads Manager. These ads run on both Facebook and Instagram placements ( you can choose to run placements on either or both platforms). This tool comes with a plethora of customization options to choose from: various ad types; objectives, and targeting mechanisms. Within Ads Manager is typically where advertisers would deploy their funnel and strategies.
What Are the Different Types of Facebook Ads?
There are many different types of Facebook Ads to choose from, including photo ads, video ads, carousel ads, slideshow ads, instant experience ads, collection ads, stories ads, and playable ads. Here’s what you need to know about each type to give you a better idea of what Facebook Ads has to offer:
- Photo Ads: Photo ads, while one of the most basic ad formats, are still one of the most effective. These ads can generate a significant ROI by increasing exposure to your products and services at a lower cost. Photo ads drive Facebook users to brand websites.
- Video Ads: Video ads can either appear in-stream, in-feed, or in stories. In-stream video ads appear while users are watching other videos. In-feed video ads appear while users are scrolling through their feeds. In-stories video ads appear while users are tapping through their Friends’ stories.
- Carousel Ads: Carousel ads feature up to 10 images or videos within a single ad, each with its own link so that users can learn more and shop for the specific product featured in each component. Alternatively, you can use Carousel ads to explain a process, highlight the features of a single product, or simply engage more with viewers.
- Slideshow Ads: Slideshow ads incorporate photos and videos for fast-loading and immersive content. Slideshow ads are quick and easy to create, making them great for brands on a budget since they limit production costs and include free video editing tools and music for you to use.
- Instant Experience Ads: Instant experience ads, formerly known as Canvas ads, include everything from photos to videos and carousels. These ads can function as an instant storefront or an instant lookbook to promote brand awareness through storytelling as well as customer acquisition.
- Collection Ads: Collection ads feature a primary image or video along with three additional images that appear in a grid format. These ads are ideal for promoting showcase products, as users are taken directly to a product page where they can learn more and make a purchase — all without leaving the app.
- Stories Ads: Stories ads work similarly to the Instagram format wherein promotional content in the form of a photo or a video is placed in between temporary “Stories” from friends. These ads are particularly effective since they are fullscreen and completely immersive.
- Playable Ads: Playable ads allow users to interact with an app or game without actually downloading or buying anything. This is a great way to show users what your product is all about and convince them to make a purchase or a download based on the experience.
What Are Facebook Boosted Posts?
Facebook Boosted Posts allow you to effectively “boost” an existing post and promote it to an audience of your choosing. “Boosting” expands the reach of your ads by adding to your budget; the larger your ad budget, the larger your potential audience will be.
This advertising option doesn’t utilize Ads Manager, and therefore, doesn’t offer the same level of customization.
What’s the Difference Between Facebook Ads and Facebook Boosted Ads?
Facebook Ads and Facebook Boosted Posts both offer different ways to advertise on the world’s most popular social media platform. Facebook Ads come with many different formats and customization options to choose from, whereas Facebook Boosted Posts come with a single format and limited customization options.
However, they both require spending through either a daily advertising budget or an overall campaign budget. Generally speaking, Facebook Ads often require more intensive research for optimal results, but you can see a significant ROI with either option.
Which One Is Better: Facebook Ads or Boosted Posts?
Now that you know the differences between Facebook Ads and Facebook Boosted Posts, you’re probably wondering which one is better for your business and will drive the best results. Here’s a breakdown of the pros and cons of both Facebook Ads and Facebook Boosted Posts so that you can maximize the ROI.
Facebook Ads: Pros and Cons
Here are some of the pros of using Facebook Ads to advertise on the platform:
- Offer a wide range of different advertising formats
- Allow for advanced targeting
- Provide tons of customization options
Here are some of the cons of using Facebook Ads to advertise on the platform:
- Require more of an investment in terms of time and money
- Require more extensive testing
- Can require agency assistance to maximize success
Facebook Boosted Posts: Pros and Cons
Here are some of the pros of using Facebook Boosted Posts to advertise on the platform:
- Offer simple and straightforward options
- Require less time and money
- Don’t require when you choose your best-performing content
Here are some of the cons of using Facebook Boosted Posts to advertise on the platform:
- Don’t offer as many advanced targeting
- Don’t offer as many creative placements
- Allow for limited room for customization
How To Use Facebook Ads
Using Facebook Ads for the first time can be confusing, which is why ECG is here to help you create effective ads that generate real results. Here’s a quick rundown of how the process works.
- Choose your advertising goals. Depending on what you’re trying to accomplish with your advertising, you can choose between different objectives like brand awareness, reach, traffic, engagement, app installs, video views, lead generation, messages, conversions, and store traffic. For example, if you’re a brand new company, you may want to focus on building top-of-funnel brand awareness. However, if you’ve just launched a new product line, then you may want to focus on things like site traffic, lead generation, and conversions.
- Name your campaign and make any necessary declarations. Next, you need to choose a name for your advertising campaign. You also need to declare if your content is related to credit, employment, housing, social issues, elections, or politics. Finally, you can choose to perform A/B testing on your campaign to better understand the content and strategies that provide you with the best results.
- Set your campaign budget and schedule. After that, you need to decide how much money you want to spend on your campaign and how long you want it to run. You can either choose a daily budget or a lifetime budget. Then, you can either choose to make your ad live right away or choose a different start date along with an end date. It’s also a good idea to set a campaign schedule based on when your target audience is likely to be online in their local time.
- Select your targeting mechanisms. Facebook offers a host of different targeting mechanisms to choose from. For example, you could choose a Facebook custom audience that consists of people who have already interacted with your brand on or off Facebook. You can also choose a target location, age, gender, language, interests, shopping behaviors, and more.
- Choose your ad placements. Facebook Ads, also known as Meta Ads, serve more than just Facebook — they also serve Instagram and Facebook Messenger, which means that you can choose to have your content appear on these platforms as well. You can also choose for your content to appear on different device types (mobile or desktop) and operating systems (iOS or Android).
- Create your ad. Finally, it’s time to create your ad by choosing your ad format, adding text where needed, and uploading creative. To get the most out of your ad campaign, partner with ECG.
How To Use Facebook Boosted Posts
Using Facebook Boosted Posts is much more straightforward than using Facebook Ads. In fact, you can quickly boost your best content in just a few simple steps:
- Navigate to your Facebook page.
- Choose the post you want to boost.
- On the bottom right of your post, select “Boost Post.”
- Complete the details for your ad, including your desired audience, budget, duration, and payment method. When it comes to choosing an audience, Facebook can recommend an audience for you or you can manually create one using specific traits. The same goes for setting a budget. Facebook can recommend one for you or you can set your own. Finally, you set the duration of your boost campaign and select your payment method.
- When everything looks good, select “Boost” to immediately boost your post and start seeing more followers, likes, comments, and other interactions.
If you’re still not sure whether you should use Facebook Ads or Facebook Boosted Posts, reach out to the Facebook marketing experts at ECG for a complimentary marketing audit and consultation to learn more about how we can help you maximize your success with Meta’s diverse advertising options.