Thanks for the Free Advertising!

Win!  Free!  Giveaway!

Not a new thing on social media or even wet shaving, but definitely an ever-increasing trend... Vendors and artisans getting their fans, friends and followers to advertise for them on social media - for free. You can easily spot the bait in posts with words like "win" or "giveaway" where of course, one of the requirements is to reshare on your own social media channel(s). Here's how it works...

A company, vendor, artisan or anyone with products or services will post on social media, be it Facebook, Twitter or Instagram (which is especially favored, despite being the hardest platform to reshare on). The picture will typically be their latest, perhaps unreleased, hard to get, sought after or perhaps pricy product. Either the picture or the verbiage of the post will contain something like "win this _____" or "we're giving away _____." Followed of course, by the conditions to win. You'll usually see things like "like this post" or "follow me and/or them" and so on - but the important one to watch for is "repost/reshare." This is usually present in most, but not all cases. This makes you a free advertiser, either willingly or accidentally.

Every time you share a post like this, you're exposing your own followers (which may or may not follow the original poster) to the "ad" and thereby increasing the audience. Some people don't mind or to help out the original poster. Totally understandable and innocent enough. Others may not even realize the sneakiness at hand. Either way, this article is merely a heads-up, mostly to the latter group. It's not a gripe, nor does it insinuate evil is afoot. If there were a complaint here, it's merely seeing your own newsfeed, timeline or whatever filled with constant reposts of the same thing. The more you follow, the more you'll see it - especially in a tight community like wet shaving. The disconnect is with a legitimate ad - you'll see it once or twice here and there. With this method you see it over and over and over again... Which is of course a bonus for the original poster.

The effectiveness of this strategy can easily pay off very quickly. The more followers the original poster has, the better. The more that follow you, the better - and so on. This is the overall audience. The platform also matters, as each one has a unique algorithm about how ads are presented and to whom - the advertiser can further specify conditions. Each of the platforms have similar methods for posting ads (none of which are as simple as a regular post) and of course they each want their cut by charging for them. This method circumvents that. So in a nutshell, you increase your audience and pay nothing for the ad. Almost... The actual cost is that of the product or service being given to "one lucky winner" - which is often less than what legitimate advertising alone would cost. See, each platform also charges more based on audience reach and how long you wish to run the ad. The latter is also easily circumvented by the giveaway duration - ending days, weeks even a month later (which can potentially multiply the audience even more). All a win-win. This is all just scratching the surface - there's literally a science behind advertising on social media (and beyond). Check out this demographic breakdown alone for potentially targeting ads by the Pew Research Center for 2018:

I won't post any examples here, or call anyone out. That's not the point and more and more are doing this. You likely know what I'm talking about here anyway - it's pretty hard to miss. For some it can be an innocently meant way to expand their followers and reach. Others know full well what they're doing. Those that do this repeatedly for the latter reason are the most annoying, and might consider their actions, lest they cause the opposite effect. Not that there's anything really wrong with any of this... It's all part of The Social Media Game. Those truly affected most by this practice are the platforms losing out on the ad revenue. Perhaps this is all obvious, but if not - now you know!

By the way, I'm giving away FREE ADVICE so reshare this with your friends to WIN GOOD KARMA! 😉