There’s a lot of tips and tricks that businesses can use to market their businesses on Facebook Pages. Businesses use scheduled posts, contests, ads, promoted posts, and a variety of other strategies to provide strong, relevant content to the right users and increase engagement.
One of the best tools you can use to hit users with highly relevant content is one not a lot of businesses know about. This tool is Facebook’s dark posts.
When it comes to increasing engagement on your posts, testing content, and showing users the specific, targeted messages and content, dark posts are one of the most valuable marketing strategies you can use on Facebook.
What Are Facebook’s Dark Posts?
Dark posts are, essentially, unpublished posts. They don’t get published to your Timeline or in your followers’ feeds organically. These posts can be status updates, images, videos, links, or an Offer. They will only be shown in users’ Newsfeeds, and they do not appear on your own Timeline.
Dark posts are only shown to certain, targeted users, and are created through Power Editor and our software here at AdEspresso, which makes the process even easier.. This has several uses that can make a big impact for your overall marketing.
Facebook’s dark posts are accessible to all Pages on Facebook, and they work as part of Facebook’s ad system. They are often most effective when used in the Newsfeed. These are different than posts that are just targeted to certain audiences.
Just a quick note: Facebook’s dark posts are completely different and separate from shadow profiles.
The Advantages of Using Facebook’s Dark Posts
One of the biggest advantages you can get when using Facebook’s dark posts is the opportunity for really accurate message testing.
Releasing unpublished posts is a great chance to test your content before it ever runs. You can test which posts you’d want to promote, and what content will even perform well on your own timeline organically.
You can test content without blowing top dollar, as you could if you were running an entire campaign. It’s an accurate preview of the results you could get.
Dark posts also give you the advantage of delivering highly-targeted and really relevant content to specific users. Delivering relevant content to the right audience, especially considering low organic reach, can be crucial to advances with your marketing on Facebook. Again: these posts won’t show up on your Page’s timeline, so you can use that to your advantage, too.
With organic reach down, it’s a challenge to get any content to your users. It’s especially hard to ensure that your content will be well received by the audience who sees it. Dark posts have the option of being extremely targeted posts, showing up only to the audience you want to them.
This presents the opportunity to potentially increase engagement—the users seeing the relevant content will be the ones most interested in it, and thus most likely to engage with it.
How to Create & Run Dark Posts
You can only create and run dark posts on Power Editor. Here at AdEspresso, however, you can do it right from our site, making it easier than ever.
If you’re using Power Editor, which will take longer and can become more complicated, you’ll select Page Posts in the navigation bar.
You’ll then choose to create a new post. Create the post, and at the bottom, leave it on the automatic ad distribution option where it stays as an unpublished post. This will keep your content as a dark post and run it as such. Keep in mind that with Power Editor, you can only create one post at a time, and you have to monitor them separately later—this takes a lot more time and effort when it doesn’t have to.
With AdEspresso, our software makes the process infinitely easier—you can even create all the variations of the post you want at once to save you time.
Here’s how to create and run dark posts through our software:
With Ad Espresso, all ads created are automatically dark posts. That alone makes the process infinitely easier for advertisers. We find split testing and message testing to be crucial to the success of long term campaigns, so we wanted to make dark posts easy to create, run, and monitor.
From the Dashboard, you’ll see the option for Ads Design, where you’ll get to create your dark posts. Fill out the information necessary.
You’ll see that you can create and add multiple headlines, ad texts, images, and URLs all in one screen.
This simplifies the process—AdEspresso will provide you with all over the combinations and variations automatically, instead of you having to create each one individually and wondering what combinations you may have missed. You upload all the content at once and AdEspresso does the mixing and matching for you—you just have to review it once it’s done.
Once the dark posts are created, you can monitor their success through our Ads manager. Once you’ve had them running long enough, you can evaluate their success based on the message testing you’ve completed, and choose to either run ad campaigns off of them or post them to your timeline.
Low organic reach can be such a big struggle for businesses and Pages on Facebook—dark posts gives us a chance to combat that, allowing us to target users with content that is more targeted and relevant to them.
We talk a lot about split testing on this site, and one of the biggest advantages of dark posts is the ability to test messages (including split test messages) before they’re ever distributed—as posts or as ads. You can get an idea of how they’ll perform without blowing large budgets. Add that to the ability to deliver highly targeted messages to the right users, and it’s easy to see why dark posts are a dark horse in Facebook marketing– and a tool that marketers should use if they aren’t already.
How will you use Facebook’s dark posts? Have you ever used them before? What results did you get? Share your experiences in the comments below!