#86 | My huge mistake.

Hello again!

Adding other traffic sources aside from Google is probably a wise move for most people in 2024.

The main one I’m working on is Facebook.

Facebook is going great for me,

And now that the festive holidays are out of the way and people are starting to plan their travels, Facebook traffic to my website is really starting to pick up again…

After some trial and error, I’ve discovered the recipe for going viral on Facebook.


But, a word of warning…

In this email, I’ll tell you about a huge mistake that could have really damaged my Facebook page, and what I did to fix it.

Okay, so going viral on Facebook sounds great.

You post something, it gets shared thousands of times and you get a ton of new followers.

What’s not to like?

Take this post I put out a few days ago as an example…

It’s already been viewed over 12 million times.

This post is just an image with a caption, so while it’s doing nothing to drive traffic to my site.

It is attracting new followers to the page.

Several thousand per day…

Sounds good, right?

Well yes, but also no.

Facebook followers are only useful if they make you money.

And the only ones that make me money are the ones that are interested in the niche and click through to my website.

There’s a BIG difference between people who like to share funny memes on Facebook, and people who actually want help with planning their vacations!

As my travel site is monetised primarily with display ads, there’s also a big difference in how much each visitor is worth.

  • 1,000 people from the US will get me $88
  • 1,000 people from the UK will get me $47
  • 1,000 people from New Zealand will get me $24
  • 1,000 people from India will get me $4
  • 1,000 people from Albania will get me $1

At the moment, my Facebook followers are from these countries…

And I’m happy with that.

Unfortunately, Facebook doesn’t tell me the location of the people who are liking the page in response to particular posts.

But, if I look at my new followers, it appears that they’re not my target demographic.

If I had to hazard a guess, I’d say that most of them live in African or Asian countries and are a little younger than I’d like.

Now, of course, I want to welcome followers from all over the world.

But, having too many followers who aren’t actually interested in the rest of the content that you post can actually be very harmful to your Facebook page.

Here’s how the Facebook algorithm works

Every time you post to Facebook (let’s say it’s a link to a great article you just wrote),

Facebook will show it to a small % of your followers.

If enough of them engage with it, it will be shown to more followers.

If enough of them engage with it, it will start to be shown to people who don’t follow you, but who are similar to the people who do.

This is how you get new, high-quality followers.

The more that your followers are aligned to your content, the better it will do and the more traffic you’ll send to your site.

That’s why pages with 5,000 followers often generate more website traffic from Facebook than pages with 500,000 followers.

The followers are passionate about the niche.

If your followers are mostly people from Africa that like memes, when you post a link to the great article you just wrote about what to see when you visit Chicago, they won’t click it.

They have no plans to visit Chicago.

And the reach will stop there.

How I’m fixing this problem

At first, I thought, ‘Eek, I’m gonna have to stop posting memes and other viral content’.

But then, I had a dig around in the settings and discovered that you can restrict the demographics of who visits your Facebook page.

You can do this by age and also by country.

So, I looked in my Raptive dashboard and found the RPM by country (I’m pretty sure Mediavine and Ezoic also let you see this data).

Now, my Facebook page is only visible to people in the higher-RPM countries…

Note: Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey are lower RPM, but I know from experience that people from these islands do also make bookings (they’re very close to the UK)

This isn’t a perfect solution.

It will mean that my viral content goes less viral.

But it does mean that when it goes viral, the people who follow the page will be more likely to be interested in the content (it’s written with US and UK visitors in mind)

Of course, display ad RPM won’t be a factor for everyone.

If your target audience is in India and you do well as an affiliate there, it might make sense to restrict your page so only people in India can see it.

But for me, this sees like the best fix, even if it is a little blunter than I’d like.

Now, I did want to explain HOW to go viral on Facebook, because it’s really not that hard.

But this email is already pretty long. So I’ll send that to you next week.

Look out for it next Tuesday at 3pm UK time.

See you then!


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