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Randy Hilarski
May 12, 2015

Promoted Posts for Lightning Fast Exposure

Use Promoted Posts to Boost Traffic to Your Blog Posts

You Need Traffic to Your Post Fast Why Not Use Promoted Posts?

You just wrote an amazing blog post. Do you sit back and just wait for the traffic to begin to roll in? Of course not, you use promoted posts. In this blog post I am going to teach you a few tricks to use promoted posts online that will leave your competitors thinking how did they do that? Since I am a firm believer in paid traffic this blog post will be about options for using paid promoted posts.

How we used Promoted Posts to Outrank the News Networks.

Back in April a huge event happened here in Panama. We had the Summit of the Americas. All of the Presidents and many dignitaries decended upon our tiny country. The government even told everyone to stay home and not go to work during the Summit. This Summit of the Americas was to be the welcoming of Cuba for the first time! We were excited because we knew there would be some great content to promote for our blogs in Spanish and in English.

There was one event that I knew would be a home run and we had to cover it. President Obama was going to visit the Panama Canal. So I wrote a blog post beforehand and just waited for Twitter to deliver me the first images. As soon as I had them I raced to publish the blog post. Now the trick is that we did not just publish the post, we used the Promoted Posts feature on Facebook immediately.

Promoted Posts for Quick Traffic and Sustained Traffic.

President Obama of the USA Visits the Panama Canal.

This was viral news so we knew we had to use the Promoted Posts feature as fast as possible to get the greatest benefit. There is one thing that we did that might be counter intuitive. We did not use the Promoted Posts feature in countries like the USA, UK and Canada. We chose to promote in English speaking countries that are low cost for clicks. We are just a small blog competing against CNN, Bloomberg, Yahoo News and the other online news organizations. The great part is that we drove over 550 visitors to the blog post that day. Initially the promoted post on Facebook sparked the traffic but the blog post still receives traffic to this day.

Using the Promoted Posts feature our blog post now outranks the Washington Times, Bloomberg and Yahoo News.

Promoted Posts for High Rankings in Google Search.

Our VIP Panama Tours Post sits atop Google Search and Google Image Search

 Did You know there is more than one way to use the Promoted Posts feature online?

There are multiple ways to use the Promotes Posts feature online. I have some personal favorites that you can implement immediately into your strategy. Everyone has heard of Facebook Promoted Posts but that is just the tip of the iceberg. Here are all the ones that I use.

  • Facebook Promoted Posts- Cheap, effective and super easy to use. This would be the first place to start but if it is simply to drive traffic to a blog post make sure to stretch every penny and first promote to countries outside of the USA, UK and Canada. Difficulty Level (Novice) Cost (Low)
  • Twitter Promoted Tweets- This method can deliver super targeted visitors and spark viral sharing. Target users audiences, for example your post is about viral marketing. Target someones users like Gary Vaynerchuk. Most of his followers would be interested in such an article. Difficulty Level (Intermediate) Cost (Medium)
  • StumbleUpon Promoted Posts- This is one of my favorites because every view counts as a visit to your website! Stumbleupon rocks guys and gals. Once again target outside of expensive countries. The minimum cost per view is $.10. So if you want 1,000 visitors it will cost you $100. Difficulty Level (Novice) Cost (Medium)
  • Google Plus Promoted Posts- Every one who follows me knows that I built my business using Google Plus so it makes sense that I mention this feature of my favorite social network. This only works for Google Plus pages, you must have 1,000 followers. When you promote your post it shows up on Adsense properties and when hovered over expands out to your full Google Plus post. It looks very nice and professional. Difficulty Level (Advanced) Cost (Medium-High)
  • Real Time Bidding Promoted Posts- For those that have access to online ad platforms you can implement audience buying or retargeting. Over time you build an online audience of people interested in a specific subject or rent audiences from Forbes or Datalogix (Big Data). This method is for those who are really serious. You use the internet display networks to drive hyper targeted audiences to your posts. Imagine you build a pixel code stable of 500,000 online users who are passionate about online marketing. You target them with banners and bring them to your posts. If you would like to do this contact us. Difficultly Level (Expert) (Cost Medium-High)

Tips on Using Paid Promoted Posts.

We all want to find a way to drive highly targeted traffic to our blog posts. If you are anything like me you spend a good deal of time sharing your articles across social, setting up the article properly for SEO and making sure the copy is engaging. Nothing stinks more than spending a few hours writing a great blog post and then getting very few visitors. So here are a few tips for those of you who are serious about using Promoted Posts to take your traffic to the next level.

  1. Target your visitors carefully. Since I am in the ad business this is what I do for a living. Take your time and set your targeting up so that you get the exact types of visitors to your blog post that you desire. If it is a blog post about news the types of visitors do not matter, but if you are trying to sell something your types of visitors matter greatly.
  2. Budget your spend appropriately. Be careful when setting up your budget spend on all of the platforms. It is easy to set your spend to ASAP on some platforms and boom you spend everything within minutes. For those that are new I recommend you set your spend to EVEN which means it will be spread out over time.
  3. Make banners or images specific to each platform. I know this sounds tedious but if you take your time and do this you will see better returns on your Promoted Posts. Also split test designs to see what the market prefers. This does not matter for StumbleUpon.
  4. Bring old blog posts back to life. Do you have an amazing blog post that you would like circulated again? Why not spend a little money and drive some paid traffic to it?
  5. Google loves websites that drive traffic to their content using paid traffic. Hint Google makes 96% of its revenue from online ads. I think it makes sense that they would give preferential treatment to content that utilizes paid traffic.

 

Over the years the old adage, “work smarter not harder”, has really begun to sink in. I used to be one of those bloggers that would spend hours sharing my content all over the internet. Not anymore folks, if I have a piece of content that I think should be seen I just pay the AdNetworks to bring in the visitors for me. I know that this can be cost prohibitive especially when you are first starting out, but believe me it makes your blogging efforts more effective and efficient. Using Promoted Posts to drive traffic fits in nicely with social media marketing and email marketing. Utilize every way you can to maximize your blogging exposure. Don’t forget to connect with me across social. All of my social media connections are below. Thank you for reading and I wish you luck on your blogging journey.

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Randy Hilarski is a US Navy Veteran who chose to move to Panama to follow his entrepreneurial dreams. He is the Co-Owner of High Impact Media Group Panama. They are a bi-lingual social media and online ads marketing agency catering to the English and Spanish audiences.
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  • Hi Randy,

    Good recommendations. I have personally used promoted posts on various platforms over the years. Sometimes my results are good, sometimes, not so much! I was struck in your article about the recommendations to lower cost by targeting audiences outside of the US, Canada and the UK. I had never thought about it in that manner before. I usually target all English speaking countries since that is the location of my potential clientele. But as I was reading your article, I started to think about all the expats from English speaking countries, who are also small business entrepreneurs and living in non-western countries. Thanks for the light bulb moment!

    Best,
    Deborah

    • Thank you Deborah! Go for it, I am a perfect example of an English speaking expat. There are plenty of us and the CPC rate is much less than other countries. One of my clients regularly get half a cent to one cent per click with FB ads. Thanks for the comment Deborah.

  • Hi Randy!

    Great article and I can’t agree more. If you need traffic, get some promoted post — and target the right audience. Yes, you may spend like a few hundred bucks (maybe thousands) but the ROI (if done correctly) would always multiple fold.

    Love this post and good find, Jan!

    • Hi Reginald,

      I agree, so much good information here, Randy really knows what he’s talking about here!

    • Thank you Reginald, our conversation the other day prompted me to write this post. Thank you for the inspiration!