About five weeks ago, I quit my job--the ultimate "never do this" move. Why? Because crying out of frustration every day about a job happens to fall into my "life is too short" category and I decided I was entitled to a one-time exception to the "never quit a job without having a new one" rule. So here I am, five weeks later, licensed by the state of Maryland to do business as McGary Associates and trying valiantly to land a new job (McGary Associates is merely a side-gig, not my plan for full-time employment. BTW, if you or anyone you know are looking to hire someone with my skillset, here's my resume ; ) ).
So what does Facebook have to do with this story? Well, I figured that the time was as good as any to see how effective Facebook's $7 promoted personal post feature was, so I created the "hire me" tab on my website, wrote a post about my situation on Facebook, and ponied up $7 to promote it. Unlike promoted posts for Facebook pages, for which they have multiple price points and options, promoted posts from personal profiles only come with one option: pay $7 to "promote this post to move it higher in friends' news feeds and help them notice it."
The result? I have to say I was impressed...and if you read this blog regularly, you know it pains me to admit that. Within minutes, personal messages were flooding in with questions and offers to help. Even today, five weeks later, I received two more emails that resulted from that post. I've also scored a new client, gotten a bunch of good leads, and (fingers crossed), one of these days may even get a job offer as a result of that post.
Would the post have had as much impact if I hadn't paid the $7? Anecdotally, no--I've never received that many responses to anything I've posted on Facebook....granted, I'm not usually announcing that I'm unemployed. But according to Facebook, the post had 2.9 times as many views because I paid to promote it, with 35% of views being organic and 65% being as a result of the $7.
Would I pay to promote just any post? Definitely not. But for specific cases where you're trying to get the word out to as many people as possible and/or have a specific call to action, I think $7 is a pretty decent deal in terms of the return on that investment. So if you're participating in a fundraiser, looking for a job, selling your house or the book you just wrote, I'd definitely recommend trying it.