Once you've created your Facebook page for your business or community organisation, you might feel relieved that your hard work has resulted in a fabulous resource that your clients will flock to. Unfortunately, this is really where the work begins - promoting and creating a buzz around your page so that people will engage with it and hear what you have to say. Just as in the offline world, you need to promote and market your wares to people who are likely to follow through and buy your products or services, or hear and act on your message. Here are a few pointers to get you going!

First, some useful links:

  1. boost your posts
  2. promote your page
  3. measure your results - insights and advert manager
  4. a beginners guide to Facebook ads

Q&A:

1. If we boost our post, does it mean our message gets to more qualified customers?

You have a choice when you boost a post - select to either your existing fans and their friends (which may be a waste of time if your fans' friends are unlikely to be interested in your product, and may even annoy them) or to a targeted sector (you can choose based on gender, age, interests and location).
You should consider the alternative - promoting a post - to give you more control over targeting (more options in locations and interests). It just takes a bit longer than boosting, which is very simple.

Consider also promoting your page, where your ad can appear in the newsfeed and on the right-hand side.

2. How do we track our success other than a number appearing on our activity data?

If you have more than 30 likes, you have access to FB Insights from your profile page (tab up the top). But you can also click on the 'build audience' drop down and select 'advert manager' which will allow you to see all sorts of data relating to how well your ad is going. More here.

3. Do we continue to have access to this audience?

Only if they go and 'like' your page as a result of viewing the post. Then you have a chance of your future posts showing up organically (for free) on their newsfeeds (it isn't guaranteed, even if they 'follow' you).

4. Does this boost actual sales rather than just boosting popularity?

The short answer is - nobody knows! As you suspect - just because someone reads your post or likes your page, does not necessarily translate into your call to action - sales, volunteering etc. However, if more people read your post, presumably, like all advertising, the better the chance you have of making a sale. Particularly if you have targeted appropriate market sectors with your advertising - the people who are likely to want your product or like your cause. The more people who like your page, the bigger your audience is for future promoted posts (you can promote the post and it will go higher on their newsfeed). The more people interact with your posts (liking, commenting, sharing), the more Facebook will put future posts on their newsfeed organically.