August: Giving Tuesday Strategy

This guide is part of a series of guides designed to get your nonprofit ready for #GivingTuesday. If you haven’t read the first two guides in the series, we strongly suggest that you start there, as the following guide will then make more sense. Here is June and July.

Last time, we discussed how to measure the success of your Facebook posts and thus the success of your new content strategy. Hopefully, you’ve used the tips given last time to gain some new learnings and insights into your supporters and what kinds of posts they enjoy the most. Even better if you’ve started applying these learnings to your ongoing content curation!

This month, we want to show you how to put a little ad money behind your posts to give your Page a little boost.

Before you click the back button because you have no budget for ads, keep reading!

If your nonprofit has absolutely no budget for Facebook advertising, please review our guide on comment management this month instead. Properly managing and responding to comments is one of the most important things that you can do on Facebook. It will also influence the success of your #GivingTuesday campaign as you’re building up relationships with folks who may be your new donors come November.

Boosting Your (Best) Posts

Today, we’re only going to talk about putting ad money behind your most successful posts. This may feel counterintuitive, but hang in there with us!

In a nutshell, Facebook has an algorithm that governs a user’s unique News Feed, and an algorithm that decides where ads will be placed in their News Feed. While these two algorithms are different, there is enough overlap to use success in the News Feed as an indicator that something will also perform well as an ad.

Performing well as an ad means a lower cost per result and reaching more of your intended audience. Following this rule of thumb means that you can pay as little as $5 to $10 a day and still receive great results. Or if you don’t have the budget for daily ads, many organizations spend as little as $20 a month for very similar results. It all depends on what works best for you and your budget.

To tease out which posts are high-performing and should be boosted with ad money, use the same methods that we covered last month when evaluating your posts and finding the high-performing ones to learn from. (We said that this could be done through ActionSprout’s Timeline feature or Facebook Insights.)

Once you have your high-performing posts, you have two options to boost.


If you have an ActionSprout account, you can turn on the SmartAds tool inside your account and have the process above happen automatically on Facebook for you! SmartAds is designed to find your top-performing posts and automatically put money behind them. Simply connect the ad account that you wish to use and your monthly budget. If you’re aiming for $5 a day, like discussed above, that would be a monthly budget of $150. Otherwise, find the budget that works for you.

Facebook Ads Manager

You can also manually perform the above through your Facebook Ads Manager.

When asked which type of ad you wish to create, simply select “Boost your posts”:


You’ll be asked to fill in your budget and your target audience (whom you’d like your post to reach). Again, a budget as little as $5 a day can lead to great results when boosting high-performing posts:

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You also have the option to set a lifetime budget.

Next, simply find the post that you’d like to boost. First, you’ll select the Facebook Page that the post appears on and then a list of that Page’s posts:

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Note: If you need further help with Facebook advertising, please see Facebook’s full documentation and their help on post ads in particular.


While running advertisements, it’s more important than ever to be practicing content curation (posting high-performing content two to three times a day). Running any kind of advertising means that you’re reaching more people on Facebook, and naturally, more of these people will like your Page. (Even if you’re not running Page-like ads.) With all these new folks coming in, you’ll want to make sure that you hook them right away with awesome content so that they stick around and become engaged supporters.

As you can already see, each month is building on previous months. As such, it’s important to keep up with the activities that we address each time so that the coming months can be as productive as possible.