The impact that any single marketer achieves thanks to paid promotion of a Facebook post isn’t typically made public.
Unless that marketer is the U.S. government.
Recently, a U.S. State Department program underwent scrutiny after spending over $US630,000 on Facebook marketing over the course of two years, in a P.R. effort to attract foreign audiences to its Facebook pages and posts.
So how much added reach did the U.S. State Department achieve when they did pay up?
In an audit of the Facebook campaign, the U.S. State Department Inspector General revealed that with paid promotion, two posts from earlier this year gained a 1,000% larger audience than they would have attracted as unpaid media.
This analysis comes from BI Intelligence coverage of social media marketing, which includes our recent report that can be downloaded with a free trial, “Earned Media And Social Media: How Marketers Can Get Beyond The Hype.”
Why did the U.S. government spend so much on Facebook?
The Bureau Of International Information Programs, like many Facebook marketers, found itself having to fork over much more money after September 2012, when Facebook made changes to its algorithm, which decides the posts that show up on user news feeds. (Facebook made similar changes more recently related to “story bumping,” which mean marketers have to compete with a greater number of older posts for user News Feed spots.)
The findings reveal just how high the stakes are for content marketers on Facebook as they try to decide whether to put dollars behind their content. If they don’t pay up, their audiences are significantly reduced.
This analysis comes from BI Intelligence, Business Insider’s research service. For access to our Social Media Marketing data, over 100 in-depth reports on the social media and mobile industries, and hundreds of charts, sign up for a free 2-week trial today.
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