Rightly or wrongly, what do Facebook’s advertisers value more: dark posts or boosted posts?
(The former, of course, are a way for brands to put content on Facebook without publishing it directly to their page, while the latter involves allocating their budgets to pre-existing posts in order to reach a larger audience.)
Some new research suggests that the choice is clear. Indeed, the average total spend per post for dark posts is $776.75 -- nearly twice as much as for boosted posts ($389), according to fresh findings from TrackMaven.
Additionally, the average dark post is active for 42 days -- nearly double the duration of the average boosted post (27 days), according to the content analytics platform.
Dark posting isn’t for every brand, however, and clearly favors the large over the small. The average Facebook page likes for businesses with active dark posts is 845,086, while the average Facebook page likes for business actively boosting posts is 592,797.
But brands may want to think twice about how they split their budgets.
In fact, boosted posts get more interactions than dark posts, TrackMaven finds. The average boosted post on Facebook gets 643 total interactions, while the average dark post on Facebook gets 559 total interactions.
What’s more, boosted posts see over nine times more organic reach and seven times more organic impressions than dark posts, on average.
To be clear, because businesses put more spend behind dark posts on average, they garner higher total reach and impressions on average.
But, because boosted posts see higher engagement -- and in particular, shares -- they reap a greater percentage of organic reach and impressions.
Dark and boosted posts -- and their associated costs -- obviously evolved from Facebook’s war on organic reach. Over time, this has made it less and less likely that brands’ content will ever make it onto users’ News Feeds.
“Now they narrow the scope to sometimes even less than 1% of your audience,” according to one savvy customer service insights specialist.With its research, TrackMave is trying to bring some clarity into competitor advertising strategies, so that brands have a better idea of where they stand on Facebook.