"Facebook has a lot of work to do -- whether it's protecting our community from abuse and hate, defending against interference by nation states, or making sure that time spent on Facebook is time well spent." - Mark Zuckerberg
Facebook makes it easy to boost post, they have that shiny little boost post button next to your content. Using this method will boost your post to a general audience but it is not recommended. In your Ads Manager or Power Editor you should have pre-defined audiences for just such an occasion. Targeting a "defined" audience can increase your engagement rate and reduce the costs in your advertising budget.
Remember, if you boost a post, Facebook will always, optimize for more post engagement - more likes, shares, comments, and etc. If your goal is to drive traffic to a website, news article, or landing page your boosted post will more than likely under perform.
In your Facebook Ads Manager or Power Editor you should define the audiences and segments that are relevant to your page. Using interest based targeting you can target people specifically interested in a subject related to your product. For example, if you are a local sports business you can define an audience in a specific region who like yoga, weights, running, etc. If your local business sponsors a 5k run you should create promotions which target runners in your targeted geographic area. This will reduce your advertising expense by narrowing and focusing on customers who have expressed an interest in running. The odds that your ads will be served to a 16 year-old gamer are close to zero.
Defining audience sets can be very detailed and powerful with Facebook. It is also extremely accurate since Facebook users have offered up their likes and interests over time. Once your audience sets are defined they can be saved for future use. You also have the ability to define multiple sets with different targets. So name your audience sets accordingly from the beginning.
When your posts don't perform you may have to accept that your audience doesn't find them important. If it is material that you feel needs to be shared you can share the post again at a different time and on a different day. Re-sharing the same post can increase visibility vs. reposting the same content again. If it is important another social media service or an email blast may be your best option. Facebook does not serve everyone.
Generally, when posts under perform on Facebook it is a sign that your audience is not interested. Maybe the headline was vague, unappealing, or the content was not well written.
When you choose the default "boost post" button you can't choose where you want to show your ads — Facebook's default option is always the desktop and mobile news feed. If you use forms or lead generators you may want to target desktop only. The conversion rate on mobile may be 3x lower and result in a less effective ad campaign. By default Facebook will serve your ads to the cheaper of the 2 feeds to maximize views. Mobile is currently the cheaper option but is the less effective tool for lead generation or increased click through rates. Users are still not comfortable enough and less likely on mobile to fill out forms or lead generators. For these types of campaigns you should specify the desktop feed.
Facebook is making a concerted effort in 2018 to keep its users on the platform. Facebook wants its users to feel welcome and its service to be reliable and trustworthy. This is apparant in the quote from Mark Zuckerberg at the top of this page. By serving ads to a defined and targeted audience you are falling in line with Facebook's 2018 goals while creating your own reliable and relevant online brand. There is no point in serving your ads to audiences that won't be interested. Organic reach on Facebook is all but dead and paid advertising is now required to be succesful. Understanding your customers and potential customers will give you a leg up on your competition.
To begin advertising on Facebook you should first set up a business account manager and then an advertising account through Facebook. This will streamline the process and allow you full control over Facebook offerings. The link is above.
If you are just getting started on Facebook we suggest that you spend a small amount of $1 - $3 per day to begin generating exposure to your page.