I’m not trying to sell you some wonder tablet . . . Just wanted to share some great insights we stumbled across during some of the social media work we’ve done for our clients recently. Facebook gives a business page owner a heap of data about their page and their posts. But it’s often hard to know what to make of that without being able to benchmark it to anything.

Since we manage campaigns and social activity for hundreds of local business clients, we decided to grab 3 months of post engagement data for 30 of our clients’ Facebook pages and do some number crunching. We analyzed over 1,300 posts and looked at these factors:

  1. What type of post was it (what action caused it)?
  2. What was the “reach rate”?  (We define this as the number of people who saw that post, divided by the number of page “likes” the business has that day – so if 30 people “saw this post” and your page had 300 likes, that’s a 10% reach rate.)
  3. What was the engagement rate – the sum of likes, shares and comments, divided by the number of posts? (So if I posted 10 times and received a total of 3 comments, 1 share and 7 likes, that’s a 110% engagement rate.)

In particular, we took a look at the engagement that occurred from sending a blog article from the client’s website and syndicating it to their Facebook page with the title and a link (let’s call this a “blog share”).

blog-share facebook

Then we compared the engagement that resulted from putting a “blog cover” on the post. This is just a simple image that goes along with the theme of the blog and includes the title. Here are a couple of simple examples:

blog-cover facebook marketing

blog-cover-2 marketing on facebook

Interestingly, the reach rate was not all that different between the blog covers and blog shares; however, although blog covers only perform about 30% greater in reach than blog shares, their engagement is about 3 times better. When you add all actions (like clicking on the link or picture, viewing the comments, or clicking to the business’s fan page), the total action rate for blog covers is 605%, which is 3.5 times that of a normal blog share:

Reach Rate* Engagement Rate Acton Rate
Blog Covers 7.6% 209.8% 605.5%
Blog Shares 5.9% 69.1% 174.9%

*for benchmarking, these reach rates, the universal reach rate from our sample data was 9.8% across all types of posts

What these numbers also suggest is that the higher engagement is not entirely by virtue of being an image post, and therefore gaining superior reach from Facebook to begin with. The reach is higher, but likely as a result of the increased engagements, too.

Using Google Analytics, we also ran some analysis on the quality of the visitors who came to the website via these posts to read the blog article and/or check out the website in general.

On website: Visits Pages/visit Avg. time
Blog Covers 271 3.49 2:38
Blog Shares 338 1.56 0:41

*there were a larger number of blog posts in this sample, leading to a higher overall visit number, but the differences in on-site time and pages was significant.

The numbers generally indicate that the article posted with the blog cover was leading to a more engaging site visit (i.e. more time on site and looking through more pages of the site once they arrived). Perhaps this is because of fewer accidental clicks, or the blog cover providing a better representation of the destination content.

Overall, the numbers indicate that not only are blog covers more engaging ON Facebook, they also generate more engagement on the website they link to. Obviously sharing new blog articles to Facebook is only one part of your social media sharing strategy as a small business, but it’s handy to know that such a simple little addition to sharing the exact same content can lead to such an improvement in your social media performance metrics.

Have you ever dived into the Facebook insights for your business page? Did any surprising trends or discoveries jump out at you?

WordJack Media provides a wide range of website design and online marketing solutions to clients throughout Canada and the US, including Collingwood ON, Ottawa ON, Barrie ON, Miami FL, Lakeland FL, Orlando FL, Charlotte NC, Hickory NC, Asheville NC and more. Contact WordJack Media today for more information about how we can help your business win on the web!

Free Web Checkup