Remember the days when you could pay no money and your posts would be seen by thousands? Unfortunately, unless you have cracked the code on an up and coming new app, those days are mostly gone. Anymore, you are lucky if 2-3% of your audience sees your posts. That is why, when content marketing, “If you wouldn’t put $5 behind a post, don’t post it”.

I understand that to many, $5 a post might seem astronomical and to some, it seems like not a lot of money. If you are one of the people who think that you could never put $5 behind all of your posts, ask yourself if you are just posting too much useless stuff and do you have a plan for your posts.

For a while with my podcast Instagram page, I was on a mission to put out content every day at 10 AM and 2 PM. I knew it was important to deliver good content and consistently, so I made an effort to get as much content out as possible. I quickly learned that this work was not being rewarded. Many of my followers weren’t seeing most of my content unless they had notifications or went right to my feed.

Luckily for me as a content marketer, I get to try out all sorts of strategies both on my projects as well as on customer accounts. Like many, I was often hesitant to put up money behind a post because I was running such tight margins. It wasn’t until I got good at getting results on ads for my clients that I had the confidence to promote my posts as well. Who would have thought, I get mad at people not listening to the advice they pay me for, but I too wasn’t taking the advice and putting it to work.

Using Colin’s Conversations page as a reference, without a promoted post, I would average 20-30 likes per post from my 2,000ish followers. When I started putting a dollar a day campaign behind the posts, within the first day I noticed a difference. On average, a $5 campaign will return 1,000 or more likes on a post.

How does getting more likes on your posts help you?

If you consume my content regularly, you will know that I often say that likes are a vanity metric and don’t do much for your brand. Though a “like” can not be deposited in the bank, it is a form of social currency. If you saw the same post on two different accounts and one had 4 likes and the other had 4,000 likes, which would you be more interested in going to check out more of their stuff? We all like to see the social proof, the same way when looking at a restaurant you are more likely to pick the place with more reviews than a place with just a few.

The other reason for getting this extra attention to your page is worth your $5 is because it opens doors. How? Especially with Facebook, if you run a promotion and people like your post, you have a full list of people you can now invite to like your page. You can simply click the likes under the promoted post and a box will pop up and you can invite EVERY PERSON who liked your post. This means they have already engaged with your content, like what you are doing, and there is a decent chance they will accept your invite and follow the page. Once they do that, they are now in your funnel and able to be targeted in many ways. With an Instagram ad, it’s a bit more difficult. You could follow their page or go to their page and engage with their content after they have liked one of your posts.

I will often spend a decent amount of time to go and like 3-5 posts of anyone who liked mine. When you like multiple posts or leave a few comments it makes people feel good and makes them wonder who you are. I always notice a rise in my page views on IG when I spend time going to other people’s pages and engage with their content. By responding with a few likes and comments in a row, you ensure you take up a good portion of their notification screen and assure that they see your brand name at a bare minimum.

Conclusion

You will be amazed at how many more eyes can be on your content if you spend a few marketing dollars. You don’t need to spend a ton of money in order to see a spike in attention. Spend time learning the difference between the different types of ads you can run for your content or get in touch with a content marketing or digital marketing agency/freelancer ASAP.

The sooner you start planning out your message with social media and utilizing the ads the platforms provide, the sooner you will be reaching your goals. There are a ton of ad spend strategies, but I always recommend starting at a dollar a day and move up when you get a bit of a buzz organically on a different piece of content. If there is not much response to your ad, chance the copy, image, and targeting, and try again.

I want you to take this away if nothing else:

You get what you pay for in life. Social media gives you a ton for free and asks nothing in return, but if you pay to play, the results will come much faster and you can save a lot of time of building the “buzz” with a few ad campaigns.