One of my readers asked me question a few weeks back regarding Facebook: “how does boosting Facebook posts affect your organic reach after you stop boosting?” She had heard that, if you boost posts on Facebook, that it would affect organic reach thereafter, meaning, once you started to boost your posts, you’d have to boost them forever, or else you’d have no organic reach.
Let me just quickly say a word about boosting Facebook posts. You publish a post on FB, and after you do, you hit the blue “boost” button in the bottom, right-hand corner. Facebook will allow more people to see your post than you would normally get if you didn’t boost it, and the amount that will see it is relative to the amount of money you put into it. You can start at $1. On my page, for example, $1 will get me between 50-200 extra views.
So, I set out to find out.
First of all, I tracked my analytics for a week (organic only–no boosting). Then I boosted one post a day for the next week. Then I tracked my analytics for the week after (organic only, no boosting).
Here are the results:
The average reach the first week (no boosting) was 161 per post. The average reach the second week (organic plus boosting) was 224. The average reach the third week was 320.
So, I think it’s pretty clear that in this particular instance, there were no repercussions for boosting for an extended period, and then stopping. My organic reach in third week, in fact, was higher than my reach the second week, which was organic and boosted combined. This may be a reflection of what’s happening with Facebook’s algorithm, (It appears, from the word around the web, that Facebook’s algorithm has loosened its stranglehold just a little. Many people are reporting slightly higher organic reach these days. Phew, right?), or it could be something else.
What I thought was interesting was what happened to my posts after I boosted them. Turns out, after you boost a tweet, your ability to get organic reach plummets dramatically. In my case, I basically got zero organic reach after I boosted the post. So my advice is to give your post a day or so, maybe 24 hours, to see how it will perform, before boosting it.
What has been your experience with organic versus paid reach on Facebook? I’d love to hear.