If your Facebook advertising has not been producing the results you would like to see, you may want to consider using text-based sponsored posts. These are long-form posts which are simply blogs or perhaps landing pages which are embedded within the main body of one of your sponsored posts. Rather than sending readers to a blog on your website and then re-targeting them with ads, so as to narrow down your group of potential buyers, long-form sponsored posts are intended to maintain engagement with your users by providing compelling content on Facebook.
Within the first few lines of text in such a post, the user should be prompted to continue reading with a See More link that takes them to additional content. It’s a fallacy that the average user will only stay engaged with content for a few seconds before getting itchy and moving on to something else. It has been adequately demonstrated in a number of surveys that when users are truly engaged with content, they have no problem consuming long-form posts which will occupy their attention for several minutes.
There are a great many companies which still believe that shorter Facebook Ads are more effective, but the truth is that a well-constructed and well-written long-form sponsored post will generally outperform any of the shorter ads. These long-form sponsored posts are capable of lowering your cost per acquisition, generating more authentic conversations, and producing higher numbers of sales conversions.
It’s also worth noting that Facebook announced last year that it would begin to favor ads which contain content that causes users to continue to comment, click, share, and interact on Facebook. With all that being said, here are two types of long-form sponsored posts you might want to try.
Present a problem and a solution
A good way to make use of this kind of long-form sponsored post is to immediately identify a pain point that many readers can relate to. After identifying this pain point, you can then provide a ready solution for the situation. For this kind of post to be effective, you simply have to identify whatever problem it is that you’re going to solve, and then provide a compelling reason for the reader to click on the See More link.
Next, you need to state the core benefits of your solution, and when doing this you should keep in mind that benefits should not be confused with features that talk about the product or service, but which instead focus on results which accrue to the customer by using that product or service. Let the user know how they will benefit by using your product, and what they will learn or discover by using it.
Now you should identify your business as an authority or expert in the field which creates a solution to the original problem. In order to instill confidence in users that your business is the one to work with, you need to present evidence of high-profile brands you’ve worked with before, demonstrate where your business has been featured in the mainstream media, or possibly to make reference to your high volume of subscriber numbers.
Another good tactic is to spell out exactly how your product or service is different from that of your competitors, and why it should be chosen. Anything that makes your product or services unique from your competitors should be identified here and emphasized to your audience. If you can anticipate user objections to buying your product or service and overcome them in the content that you post, you may significantly increase the effectiveness of your posting. You can do this in trials on your own company members so that you can find out legitimate questions they might ask, or issues which might prevent them from buying.
Model the hero’s journey
Set the scene for your hero’s journey by sharing some kind of triggering event, and then in the sentence before the See More prompt, you should create suspense and interest which will make the user want to read on. The interest that gets created stems from making your readers wonder what the triggering event was for your journey, and how it was that you created something new, or what it was that happened which caused you to go down a different path.
In the longer form post, you can describe a complete back story which led up to the triggering event and conveys to users what your thoughts and experiences were prior to it. The point of this section is to establish a rapport with your reader, allowing them to identify with your struggles and the obstacles you had overcome. You should continue on with the story then, challenging conventional wisdom about how a problem should be solved, and what your own new approach to it is.
This is a great way to demonstrate to readers how you’re different than your competitors, and just what makes you an authority on this topic. At this point, you can continue on with your story of discovery and how was that you came upon the solution to a problem which your users all have. This will demonstrate to your following all the research that you did in order to solve the problem, and why it’s the best way to go about it. Next, you should share with readers the results that you achieved with your solution to the problem.
By acknowledging that other people may be struggling with this exact same issue, you can establish a relationship with your readers which will make them sympathetic to your situation. Call on your readers to take action, so that they can share some of the same benefits you did through your solution of the problem, and just why it is that they will benefit from your expert knowledge on the subject.
The final part of your long-form sponsored post should be to produce a call to action which mobilizes your readers, and spells out exactly what they will get by trying the same solution. Near the end of your sponsored post, you can include a link which goes to your landing page, and which guides the user to the final stage of the purchasing cycle.