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What is The Difference Between Organic and Paid Reach on Facebook


A business owner analyzing data to learn the difference between organic and paid reach on Facebook

If you want to grow your audience, increase your brand awareness, and generate more sales, you need to understand how Facebook works and how you can use it effectively.

Facebook is the most popular social media platform in the world, with over 3 billion monthly active users. That means there are billions of potential customers for your business on Facebook. But how do you reach them?


There are two main ways to reach people on Facebook: organic and paid. Organic reach is the number of people who see your posts for free, while paid reach is the number of people who see your posts as a result of paid advertising. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, and both require different strategies and tactics.


In this blog post, I’m going to explain what organic and paid reach are, how they are calculated, and how you can optimize them for your business. By the end of this post, you’ll have a clear understanding of how to use Facebook to reach your target audience and achieve your marketing goals.


Let’s get started!


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What Is Organic Reach On Facebook?

Organic reach on Facebook refers to how many people see your posts for free on the platform. This includes people who follow your page, as well as people who don’t follow your page but see your posts because someone they know liked, commented, or shared them.

Organic reach is influenced by many factors, such as:

  • The quality and relevance of your content

  • The time and frequency of your posting

  • The engagement and feedback of your audience

  • The algorithm and policies of Facebook

Organic reach is a great way to build trust and loyalty with your audience, as well as to showcase your brand personality and values. It can also help you create word-of-mouth and viral effects, as your posts can reach new people through your existing fans.


However, organic reach is not easy to achieve, especially in today’s competitive and crowded social media landscape. According to a study by Socialinsider, the average organic reach rate of a Facebook post in 2021 was only 6.53%. That means that only 6 out of 100 people who follow your page will see your post on their news feed.


Why is organic reach so low? This is not a simple problem, but a complex one with multiple factors, such as:

As you can see, organic reach is a challenging and unpredictable metric to rely on for your marketing success. That’s why many businesses also use paid reach to supplement their organic efforts.


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What Is Paid Reach On Facebook?

Paid reach on Facebook refers to how many people see your posts as a result of paid advertising. This includes people who follow your page and people who don’t follow your page but match your target audience criteria.


Paid reach is achieved by using Facebook’s advertising tools, such as:


Boosted Posts

These are posts that you pay to promote to a larger or more specific audience than your organic reach. You can boost any post that you create on your page, such as a photo, video, link, or event. You can choose your budget, duration, and audience for your boosted post, and track its performance using Facebook’s insights.


Page Post Ads

These are ads that look like regular posts on your page, but have a “Sponsored” label and a call-to-action button. You can create page post ads using Facebook’s Ads Manager or Business Suite, where you can access more advanced features and options than boosted posts. You can also choose where to place your ads, such as on the news feed, stories, marketplace, or audience network.


Other Ad Formats

Facebook offers a variety of ad formats to suit different objectives and creative styles. Some of the most popular ones are carousel ads, video ads, collection ads, and dynamic ads. You can also create ads for specific purposes, such as lead generation, app installs, conversions, or catalog sales.


Paid reach is a powerful way to expand your audience, increase your brand awareness, and generate more sales. It can also help you overcome the limitations and challenges of organic reach, such as:

  • The low visibility and reach of your posts

  • The difficulty and cost of creating high-quality and engaging content

  • The complexity and uncertainty of the algorithm and policies

However, paid reach is not a magic bullet that guarantees your marketing success. It also has its drawbacks and risks, such as:

As you can see, paid reach is a costly and competitive metric to depend on for your marketing success. That’s why many businesses also use organic reach to complement their paid efforts.


Now that you know what organic and paid reach are, how they are calculated, how they have changed over time, and why they are important for your business, you might be wondering how you can optimize them for your marketing success.


Well, wonder no more, because I’m going to share with you some of the best practices and tips that you can use to boost your organic and paid reach on Facebook.


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How To Optimize Organic Reach On Facebook

Optimizing organic reach on Facebook is not easy, but it’s not impossible either. You just need to be smart, creative, and consistent with your content and strategy.

Here are some of the things that you can do to increase your organic reach on Facebook:


Know Your Audience

The first and most important step is to understand who your audience is, what they want, and how they behave on Facebook. You can use Facebook’s insights and analytics tools to learn more about your audience’s demographics, interests, preferences, and behaviour. You can also use surveys, polls, quizzes, and feedback forms to get direct input from your audience. The more you know your audience, the more you can tailor your content and strategy to their needs and expectations.


Create Quality and Relevant Content

The second and most obvious step is to create content that is high-quality and relevant to your audience and your business. Quality means that your content is original, informative, engaging, and entertaining. Relevance means that your content is aligned with your audience’s pain points, goals, and interests, as well as your business’s mission, vision, and values. You can use different types of content, such as photos, videos, links, or live streams, to showcase your brand personality and value proposition. You can also use different formats, such as stories, reels, or guides, to create more immersive and interactive experiences for your audience.


Optimize Your Content For The Algorithm

The third and most tricky step is to optimize your content for the algorithm. The algorithm is the system that Facebook uses to rank and prioritize content on the news feed. The algorithm considers many factors, such as the type, quality, and recency of the content, the relationship and interaction between the user and the page, and the user’s personal preferences and behaviour. The algorithm also changes frequently, so you need to stay updated and informed about the latest updates and trends.


You can use some of the following tips to optimize your content for the algorithm:


Post At The Right Time and Frequency

You want to post when your audience is most active and likely to see your content. You can use Facebook’s insights and analytics tools to find out the best times and days to post for your audience. You also want to post at a consistent and reasonable frequency. You don’t want to post too often or too rarely, as that can affect your reach and engagement. A good rule of thumb is to post at least once a day, but not more than three times a day.

Use Keywords and Hashtags

You want to use keywords and hashtags that are relevant to your content and your audience. Keywords are the words and phrases that your audience uses to search for your content or your business. Hashtags are the words and phrases that your audience uses to categorize and discover your content or your business. You can use Facebook’s search and explore features to find out the most popular and relevant keywords and hashtags for your niche. You want to use keywords and hashtags that are specific, descriptive, and trending, but not too broad, generic, or spammy.

Encourage Engagement and Feedback

You want to encourage your audience to engage and interact with your content and your page. Engagement and feedback are the signals that the algorithm uses to measure the quality and relevance of your content and to rank and prioritize it on the news feed. Engagement and feedback include actions such as likes, comments, shares, reactions, clicks, views, saves, and ratings.


You can use some of the following tips to encourage engagement and feedback:


Ask Questions and Opinions

You can ask your audience questions and opinions about your content, your business, or your industry. This can spark a conversation and a debate, and generate more comments and reactions. You can also use polls, quizzes, or surveys to get more input and feedback from your audience.

Use Calls to Action

You can use calls to action to prompt your audience to take a specific action on your content or your page. For example, you can ask them to like, share, comment, or follow your page, or to visit your website, sign up for your newsletter, or buy your product. You can also use buttons, stickers, or links to make it easier and faster for your audience to take action.

Respond and Interact

You can respond and interact with your audience on your content and your page. This can show your appreciation and gratitude, and build trust and loyalty with your audience. You can also use emojis, gifs, or stickers to add some fun and personality to your responses and interactions.


Collaborate and Cross-Promote

The fourth and most fun step is to collaborate and cross-promote with other pages and influencers on Facebook. Collaboration and cross-promotion are the ways that you can leverage the power and reach of other pages and influencers to grow your own audience and reach. Collaboration and cross-promotion include activities such as:


Tagging and Mentioning

You can tag and mention other pages and influencers that are relevant to your content or your business. This can help you get more exposure and visibility, as well as more engagement and feedback from their audience. You can also ask them to tag and mention you back, to create a mutual benefit and a win-win situation.


Sharing and Resharing

You can share and reshare content from other pages and influencers that are relevant to your content or your business. This can help you provide more value and variety to your audience, as well as more engagement and feedback from their audience. You can also ask them to share and reshare your content back, to create a mutual benefit and a win-win situation.


Co-Creating and Co-Hosting

You can co-create and co-host content with other pages and influencers that are relevant to your content or your business. This can help you create more original and engaging content, as well as more engagement and feedback from both audiences. You can also co-create and co-host different types of content, such as photos, videos, live streams, podcasts, or webinars.

These are some of the ways that you can optimize your organic reach on Facebook. However, these are not the only ways, nor are they the guaranteed ways. You need to experiment and test different methods and tactics and see what works best for your audience and your business. You also need to monitor and measure your results and performance and adjust and improve your strategy and tactics accordingly.


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How To Optimize Paid Reach On Facebook

Optimizing paid reach on Facebook is not hard, but it’s not easy either. You just need to be strategic, creative, and efficient with your budget and strategy.


Here are some of the things that you can do to increase your paid reach on Facebook:


Define Your Objective and Budget

The first and most essential step is to define your objective and budget for your advertising campaign. Your objective is the goal that you want to achieve with your advertising, such as brand awareness, traffic, leads, conversions, or sales. Your budget is the amount of money that you want to spend on your advertising, such as daily, weekly, or monthly. You can use Facebook’s objectives and budget tools to help you choose the best option for your campaign. You want to choose an objective and a budget that are realistic, specific, and measurable, and that align with your business goals and resources.


Choose Your Audience and Placement

The second and most important step is to choose your audience and placement for your advertising campaign. Your audience is the group of people that you want to reach with your advertising, based on their demographics, interests, behaviour, and location. Your placement is the location where you want to show your ads, such as on the news feed, stories, marketplace, or audience network. You can use Facebook’s audience and placement tools to help you create and refine your target audience and placement. You want to choose an audience and a placement that are relevant, specific, and effective, and that match your objective and budget.


Create Your Ad and Copy

The third and most creative step is to create your ad and copy for your advertising campaign. Your ad is the visual and audio element of your advertising, such as a photo, video, carousel, or collection. Your copy is the text element of your advertising, such as a headline, description, or call to action. You can use Facebook’s ad and copy tools to help you design and write your ad and copy. You want to create an ad and a copy that are attractive, engaging, and persuasive, and that communicate your value proposition and your unique selling point.


Optimize Your Ad and Copy For The Algorithm

The fourth and most tricky step is to optimize your ad and copy for the algorithm. The algorithm is the system that Facebook uses to rank and prioritize ads on the platform. The algorithm considers many factors, such as the quality and relevance of the ad and copy, the feedback and interaction of the audience, and the bid and budget of the advertiser. The algorithm also changes frequently, so you need to stay updated and informed about the latest updates and trends.


You can use some of the following tips to optimize your ad and copy for the algorithm:


Test and Experiment

You want to test and experiment with different versions of your ad and copy, and see what performs best for your audience and your objective. You can use Facebook’s split testing and dynamic creative features to help you create and compare different versions of your ad and copy, and to optimize them automatically based on the best performance.


Follow The Best Practices and Guidelines

You want to follow the best practices and guidelines that Facebook provides for creating and running ads on the platform. These include the technical specifications, the creative recommendations, and the policy requirements for your ad and copy. You can use Facebook’s creative hub and policy center to help you learn and apply the best practices and guidelines for your ad and copy.


Monitor and Measure

You want to monitor and measure your ad and copy performance and results, and adjust and improve your strategy and tactics accordingly. You can use Facebook’s insights and analytics tools to help you track and analyze your ad and copy performance and results, such as reach, impressions, clicks, conversions, and return on ad spend.


These are some of the ways that you can optimize your paid reach on Facebook. However, these are not the only ways, nor are they the guaranteed ways. You need to experiment and test different methods and tactics and see what works best for your audience and your business. You also need to monitor and measure your results and performance and adjust and improve your strategy and tactics accordingly.


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Conclusion

Organic and paid reach are two of the most important metrics for your marketing success on Facebook. They both have their advantages and disadvantages, and they both require different strategies and tactics. You need to understand how they work, how they are calculated, how they have changed over time, and how you can optimize them for your business.


In this blog post, I have explained what organic and paid reach are, how they are calculated, how they have changed over time, and how you can optimize them for your business. I hope you have found this post informative and helpful, and that you have learned something new and useful.


I would love to hear from you, so don’t be shy and drop me a line below with your thoughts, opinions, or suggestions.


Thank you for reading, and happy marketing

About Tyler Thompson

As the proud owner of AdFuelers and a certified expert by Google, Meta, and the Digital Marketing Institute, I've got the tools and tricks to fuel your business's success. With years of experience, I'm passionate about turning your marketing headaches into triumphs.

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