MAY 10, 2020
The term may sound mysterious, but social media “dark posts” are an essential part of the digital marketing landscape. You’ve probably heard of dark posts, but what does that mean exactly? And should you be running them? At Wilbert, we use a variety of social media advertising tools, and dark posts are an often-misunderstood piece, so we’re here to demystify them.
What is a dark post?
A “dark post” is simply a type of social media ad. Throughout the paid social media landscape, there are dozens of tools we can use to boost your content to the right audience, including promoting the content you post organically on your page, running ad campaigns to draw in new followers, increase the views on a video, etc.
A dark post is an ad that does not appear on your social media profile; it is specifically created to be an advertisement and targeted at an audience we build. You’ve probably seen dark posts “in the wild” on your feed; maybe you browsed for a pair of shoes and now they’re staring you in the face on your Instagram feed. The content in dark posts is often more targeted than a general post since only a set audience can see them.
Dark posts will always be indicated as a sponsored or promoted post, and look a little different than an organic post, but they fit seamlessly into the feed and the creative and copy can be highly customized. Like all social media ads, they have a call to action, such as asking users to click to a website or sign up for an e-newsletter.
Why would you use dark posts?
Dark posts are a great tool to use for a variety of objectives, from website visits to sign-ups to awareness campaigns. Since the ad creative and audience are so customizable, we use dark ads to target niche content to smaller segments of a client’s audience. For example, if we’re marketing an office building for lease, we will post more general content on the page about its design, location and amenities. This will be nicely complemented by a dark posts campaign with specific ads targeted at tenant brokers.
Another example is for different geographical markets. Recently, for a client whose most active markets are South Carolina, New York and Louisiana, we created specific dark ads with graphics customized for each market touting the company’s services in those areas.
How do you measure success?
Like all social media ads, we base dark ads performance on a cost per result basis. Each platform is different, but if we reach a certain cost per result benchmark, we know our dark post content is resonating with the specific audience we served it to. Whether it’s cost per click, CPM or cost per lead, we’re looking for the most results possible for the money we spent. Dark posts often have a high ROI, as we’re creating content for a specific audience and then targeting it only to them, vs. boosting more general organic content to a wider audience.
Have questions about social media advertising and how it can help your business objectives? We’d love to hear from you at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Wilbert Group
1718 Peachtree Street, Suite 1048
Atlanta, GA 30309
404 748 1250