Measurement & Tracking
By measuring how your Page performs over time, you can see if you are accomplishing your organizational goals on Facebook. You can track your Page and post metrics monthly, weekly or daily to evaluate how your Page is growing over time and adjust your content to fit your growing community.
Start by deciding which metric is most important to your organization. For example, you might consider:
- Post reach
- Engagement such as likes, comments, shares or video views
- Actions taken such as shares, website visits, sign ups, event RSVPs, donations and so on
- Audience demographics such as gender, age, locations or languages
- Total Page likes
Keep in mind that it’s important to consider which metrics are most relevant to your organization’s goals, and be careful of metrics that may not contribute to those goals. For example, Page likes are a useful metric for organizations that need a large audience, but may not be useful for organizations looking for a highly engaged audience. Similarly, engagement is a valuable metric for measuring online interaction with campaigns, but doesn’t always contribute to conversion metrics like donations. Choose your metrics to reflect your end goals.
Depending on your goals, you may want to keep track of one or more of Facebook’s built-in metrics for your Page or for individuals posts. Most of Facebook’s metrics fit into a conversion funnel moving from low to high interaction:
Reach measures how many people are seeing your posts. Your posts can reach people in one of three ways:
- A person has liked your Page and your post is relevant to them
- A person’s friend has engaged with your post, making it relevant to them
- You’ve paid for an ad and a person fits into your ad’s target audience
There are strategies you can try if you find that your posts are not gaining the reach you want. You can modify your post to try to engage more people by adjusting the message, tone, post type, timing or target audience. If you have a budget to work with, you can also create an ad to increase your post reach. Ads allow more specific targeting than organic posts, increasing the chance that the most relevant people will see your post.
Post likes measure how many people have given your post a thumbs up, and Page likes measure how many people have opted in to follow your Page and see more of your posts. Page likes can come from a number of sources, including people navigating to your Page from a post, searching, receiving a Page Like invitation, seeing a Page Suggestion, viewing an Ad, and others. For strategies on increasing your Page likes, see Get People to Like Your Page. Post likes usually occur when people see an organic or paid post in News Feed and agree with it or find it interesting. When evaluating post likes, you may choose to calculate Post Likes divided by Post Reach to get a sense of the percentage of people who viewed and then liked each post. To grow your post likes per person reached, you might try adjusting the target audience, tone or framing of the message. You can also try balancing serious or organization-related posts with inspirational, fun or topical posts that catch people’s eyes.
Post comments measure how much people are inspired to share their questions, opinions or stories in reaction to a post. This metric becomes particularly relevant when one of your objectives is to encourage dialogue (ex: if you’re running a campaign to challenge cultural norms or empower people to talk about a personal issue). Comments are another metric you may choose to calculate as Post Comments divided by Post Reach. You can encourage more people to comment on your posts by directly asking questions, presenting an idea that is likely to spark debate or inviting people to weigh in with their opinion or a personal story. To keep the conversation going, it’s often helpful to actively respond to comments to let people know they’ve been heard and to encourage a diversity of opinions, even if some of them differ from your organization’s stance.
Post shares measure how much people find your posts compelling enough to share on their own Timelines. People tend to share posts that they feel represent them or that they want to make sure their friends see. This metric is valuable for spreading your posts outside your community of supporters, and is also a higher level of engagement that can be harder to get. Facebook is a personal, social place. To increase shares of your posts, you may want to think about the types of content people might want to be seen talking about. What kind of posts will help them get positive feedback from their friends and raise their reputation as smart, analytical, knowledgeable or funny? Here are a few ideas:
- Make the post headline catchy or compelling
- Experiment with images, video or infographics
- Look for trends in frequently shared posts, such as top 10 lists, popular quotes or memes
- Try switching to a positive framing of your message if you’re currently using a negative one
Post clicks are another signal of engagement in your posts, measuring how many people click on them to learn more. Clicks can be a helpful metric for campaigns aimed at driving people to visit your website, sign up for emails or read an article. Encouraging your audience to click a link that may take them away from their current experience can be difficult. To improve your click rate, you may want to think about creating a desire to learn more, ensuring the post feels urgent and relevant, or building up to a key detail that compels the reader to click through to the answer. Images to support your headline are a great way to further catch people’s attention.
Engagement is a measure of the unique number of people who liked, commented, shared or clicked on your posts in a given time period. Engagement is an aggregate measurement of how much your post encouraged people to interact with it in some way.
Conversion measures how many people took a specific action in response to a post, such as taking a pledge, signing up for an email list or purchasing a t-shirt. Conversion is the key metric for many campaigns with a specific objective in mind. For promoted posts, you can add a conversion pixel to a page on your website to track how many people clicked through from Facebook to your site and eventually completed the action you were seeking as a result of seeing your ad. To improve conversion from your posts, consider the following tactics, and check out Activate Supporters for more ideas.
- Make your call to action clear and straightforward
- Make the action as easy to take as possible by minimizing the number of steps and decisions.
- Give people a compelling reason why it is important that they take the action.
- Build up trust with your followers before making an ask. More demanding asks sometimes require stronger relationships with supporters, built up through multiple interactions over time.
- Ensure the impact is believable, so people can be confident their actions will make a difference.
It can be helpful to consolidate your key metrics into one place and pull them regularly, so you don’t get distracted by other metrics and are able to track changes over time. You can filter data in the Page Insights tool by date ranges or export and save it. A sample dashboard might look like the below. Note that this dashboard tracks both raw metrics and metrics relative to the Page’s overall reach for a given time period:
Use Metrics For Testing
Your Facebook Page presents a natural opportunity to test and measure the results of various messaging strategies and techniques. Page posts can simulate a controlled experiment, allowing you to keep other factors steady while altering one in order to evaluate its effectiveness on the metrics you care about. You can test and measure varying a number of variables, including:
- Post text (one message vs. another)
- Post type (text vs. image vs. video)
- Audience demographics (men vs. women, UK vs. Australia)
- Audience interests (dogs vs. cats)
- Day and time (weekend vs. weekday, morning vs. evening)
You can test and measure with regular posts or with Ads, which offer more variables to test. Though not always statistically significant, this is a quick and easy method to evaluate different variables and change your posting strategy accordingly. TIP: If you want to reach target audiences that aren’t well represented by your community of supporters, be cautious with testing. Comparing the performance of a post targeting your usual community against a new target audience may artificially show that the post is performing poorly because there are fewer people in your community for it to reach.