Dark Posts vs. Boosted Posts – Pros and Cons

Unsure about the difference between dark posts and boosted posts? Wondering which could yield better results? It is crucial to understand both the distinctions and similarities between these methods to optimise your paid advertising efforts in line with your objectives. Let’s delve into both dark posts and boosted posts to offer a clearer understanding of when to employ each method.

What is a Dark Post?

Dark posts are targeted advertisements on social media. Unlike boosted and organic posts, they do not populate your page’s timeline or appear organically in your followers’ feeds. Instead, they exclusively appear as sponsored content in the feeds of users you are specifically targeting.


A good example of the effective use of dark posts is demonstrated by The Purest Co., a skincare brand. In a recent marketing campaign, The Purest Co. crafted a dark post to showcase authentic before-and-after images, juxtaposed side by side. This visual narrative, displayed as the first frame of the post, aimed to captivate the attention of their target audience—individuals who frequently express interest in and purchase their skincare products.

By leveraging the targeted capabilities of dark posts, The Purest Co. ensured that this compelling content reached the specific demographic most likely to be interested in their offerings. The before-and-after images not only showcased the transformative effects of their products but also served as a powerful endorsement, bolstering brand credibility and trust.

Through this strategic approach, The Purest Co. effectively engaged its audience, reinforcing the notion that similar transformations could be achieved by using their products. By directly addressing the needs and desires of its target demographic, The Purest Co. maximised the impact of its dark post campaign, fostering deeper connections with existing customers and enticing potential buyers within their niche market. This prompts users to click ‘Learn More’ and brings them to their website.

Another notable instance of an effective dark post campaign comes from DIOR, a renowned luxury fashion house. In their marketing strategy for the J’Adore Parfum D’eau, DIOR ingeniously employed a dark post featuring a prominent celebrity as the initial frame, strategically designed to captivate the attention of their target audience.

The dark post showcased the celebrity figure immersed in a visually stunning scene, surrounded by cascading flowers and water, evoking a sense of luxury and indulgence. This captivating imagery served as a compelling visual narrative, effectively telling the story of the essence and allure of the J’Adore Parfum D’eau.

By leveraging the influential power of a well-known celebrity and the captivating allure of the imagery, DIOR succeeded in creating an impactful dark post that resonated with its audience. The strategic use of visuals and storytelling techniques not only captured attention but also conveyed the essence of the product in a memorable and persuasive manner.

Through this innovative approach, DIOR effectively utilised dark posts to engage their audience, generate excitement around their product, and reinforce their brand’s image as a purveyor of luxury and sophistication. This example highlights the potency of leveraging captivating visuals and influential personalities in dark post campaigns to create memorable and impactful brand experiences.

Upon clicking ‘Learn More,’ viewers were directed to DIOR’s website, where they could explore the J’Adore Parfum D’eau in more detail, learn about its unique features and benefits, and potentially make a purchase. This seamless integration between the dark post and the website ensured a smooth transition for interested consumers, minimising friction in the path to conversion.

What is a Boosted Post?

A boosted post refers to a post on your social media feed’s timeline that you can allocate funds to present as an advertisement to a selected audience. This constitutes the simplest method of advertising on Facebook and Instagram. When you boost a post, it appears as an ad in your audience’s Facebook or Instagram news feed, depending on the platform where you initially posted it.

Additionally, you have the option to boost the post on the opposite platform from where it organically resides to expand its reach. It is worth noting that even if the original post lacks a link, you can include a click-through link when boosting a post in Ads Manager.

A compelling example of a boosted post campaign comes from ASTALIFTSG, a Japanese skincare brand renowned for its innovative products. In their promotion of the Jelly Aquarysta, ASTALIFTSG employed a strategically crafted boosted post, featuring the promotion prominently as a prominent header alongside pricing details.

The boosted post showcased the Jelly Aquarysta promotion with a bold and eye-catching header, ensuring that the offer immediately captured the attention of viewers scrolling through their social media feeds. By displaying the promotion and pricing information, ASTALIFTSG effectively communicated the value proposition of the Jelly Aquarysta, enticing potential customers with a compelling offer.

The strategic placement of the promotion as a big header in the boosted post served to highlight its importance and relevance, making it easy for viewers to quickly grasp the key details of the offer. This clear and concise presentation not only increased the visibility of the promotion but also facilitated ease of understanding for viewers, driving engagement and interest in the product.

Through this cleverly executed boosted post campaign, ASTALIFTSG effectively leveraged the power of social media advertising to promote their Jelly Aquarysta promotion and drive sales.

Pros of Dark Posts

Targeted Audience Reach

Dark posts enable precise audience targeting, ensuring that content reaches the most relevant users. This targeted approach increases the likelihood of engagement and conversions.

A/B Testing Capabilities

Marketers can create multiple variations of dark posts and test them against each other to determine which resonates best with their audience. This experimentation facilitates optimisation and improves campaign performance over time.

Customisation and Personalisation Options

Dark posts offer flexibility in terms of content customisation, allowing businesses to craft tailored messages for different audience segments. Personalised content tends to resonate more with users, driving higher engagement rates.

Cons of Dark Posts

Lack of Transparency

Since dark posts do not appear on the business’s timeline, they can create a perception of secrecy or lack of authenticity among users. Transparency is crucial in building trust with the audience, and the absence of visible posts may raise concerns.

Limited Engagement Opportunities

Dark posts do not encourage user interactions such as likes, comments, or shares since they are not visible on the business’s page. This limited engagement may hinder community building and organic reach.

Potential for Ad Fatigue

Over-reliance on dark posts for advertising may lead to audience fatigue if users perceive the content as repetitive or intrusive. Diversifying advertising strategies is essential to maintain audience interest and avoid ad fatigue.

Businesses and brands frequently utilise dark posts as a strategic tool to conduct message testing without cluttering their social media feed page with numerous posts. Dark posts represent a category of social media posts enabling businesses to experiment with various ideas, gather feedback on advertising campaigns, disseminate targeted messages to specific demographics, and share content that might not align with their main feed’s theme or is intended for a specific subgroup of their audience.

Notably, dark posts afford the advantage of being visible to users who may not necessarily follow the brand, broadening the reach of the promoted content beyond existing followers.

Pros of Boosted Posts

Increased Visibility

Boosted posts amplify the reach of organic content, ensuring that they reach a larger audience beyond the brand’s followers. This increased visibility can help businesses expand their reach and attract new followers.

Simple and Straightforward Process

Boosting a post is a simple process that can be done directly from the business’s Facebook page. It requires minimal setup and technical expertise, making it accessible to brands of all sizes.

Engagement and Interaction Opportunities

Boosted posts retain the engagement features of organic posts, allowing users to like, comment, and share the content. This interaction fosters community engagement and strengthens brand affinity.

Cons of Boosted Posts

Less Targeting Options

Unlike dark posts, boosted posts offer limited targeting options. Businesses can only target users based on demographics, location, and interests, restricting their ability to reach highly specific audience segments.

Limited Analytics and Optimisation Features

Boosted posts provide basic analytics metrics such as reach, engagement, and clicks. However, they lack advanced optimisation features available in dark post campaigns, making it challenging to fine-tune targeting and messaging strategies.

Cost Inefficiency Compared to Dark Posts

Boosted posts may incur higher costs compared to dark posts, especially for businesses targeting larger audience segments. Without precise targeting, businesses risk inefficient spending and lower return on investment (ROI).

So, Boosted Posts or Dark Posts?

Businesses often prefer to use boosted posts over dark posts for their simplicity and accessibility. Boosted posts can be easily created and managed directly from the business’s page without navigating complex ad management platforms, making them more accessible to businesses with limited resources or expertise in social media advertising.

Moreover, boosted posts appear on the business’s timeline like any other organic post, ensuring visibility to followers and visitors to the page. This visibility helps maintain a consistent brand presence and reinforces engagement with existing followers.

Boosted posts also retain engagement features, allowing users to like, comment, and share the content, fostering community engagement and strengthening brand affinity. Additionally, boosting a post is often more cost-efficient for reaching a broader audience without extensive customisation needs, making it suitable for promoting evergreen content or campaigns with limited targeting requirements.

When deciding between dark posts and boosted posts, businesses should consider their advertising goals, target audience characteristics, and budget constraints. Dark posts are ideal for highly targeted campaigns that require customisation and optimisation, while boosted posts are suitable for increasing overall brand visibility and engagement.

In conclusion

both dark posts and boosted posts offer unique advantages and drawbacks in the realm of social media advertising. By understanding their pros and cons, businesses can devise informed strategies that align with their objectives and maximise their advertising ROI. Whether opting for precision targeting with dark posts or broad reach with boosted posts, the key lies in adapting strategies to meet the evolving needs of the target audience in the dynamic landscape of social media marketing.


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