4 Ways to Use Facebook Insights to Maximize Your Digital Media Efforts

Bankable FEC
August 8, 2017

Facebook Insights is an analytical tool that was developed by Facebook in order to help page moderators understand the analytical information that goes behind social media success. Facebook Insights can provide information on user demographics, historical performance, post reach, and more. Essentially, the tool is the key to achieving optimized Facebook business usage. Facebook Insights can only be accessed by users who are administrators of the page in question. This tool is extremely useful, but can also be confusing at a first look. In order to help ease users into the process of using Facebook Insights to improve your social media use, here are 4 of the most important areas of Insights to focus on.

Facebook Insights Navigation Bar

First, go to your business page. This bar should be shown underneath the Facebook search bar, and above the actual business page. Click on the “Insights” tab, which will guide you to the Insights menu. Facebook provides a helpful list of resources to cover the basics of the tool here: https://www.facebook.com/help/search/?q=insights. Additionally, Sprout Social provides a great list of vocabulary terms that are helpful to review when diving into Facebook business usage. It can be located here: https://sproutsocial.com/insights/facebook-terminology-glossary/.

Starting with the Likes tab: “Total Page Likes” and “Net Likes” sections

Taking a look at the "likes" tab within Facebook Insights

The “Likes” tab is focused around the traffic of likes that come through the page. The top of the page features an adjustable bar where the time period can be seen. Preset choices for one week, one month, and one quarter can be selected, or there is a customizable range selector where the user can pick a starting and ending date of a time period to analyze. Below that is the “Total Page Likes” section. This section shows the amount of page likes and the trend in which they grew in the context of the time range selected above. This area can be used in order to get a broad look at the trend of likes historically.

Net Likes breakdown in Facebook Insights

Below the “Total Page Likes” section is the “Net Likes” section. The “Net Likes” area shows the number of new likes minus the number of unlikes. On the graph, the likes are illustrated by positive trends outlined by blue, and unlikes are illustrated by negative trends outlined in red. This is where the user can guarantee that they are actually making forward progress on like count rather than losing likes to unlikes. The user also has the choice to pick a benchmark on the side, where they can compare the average performance over time to the benchmark metric selected. The benchmark selections available are unlikes, organic likes, paid likes, and net likes. Organic likes refers to likes that happen without paid assistance from ads or post boosts, while paid likes are likes that happen as a result of paid assistance from ads or post boosts.

2. Reach tab: “Reactions, Comments, and Shares” section

The term “reach” refers to the audience size of your posts. It is the number of unique people who have seen posts from the business page. Reach is important to track and measure because it directly effects audience engagement and overall impressions (number of times a post from the page in question is displayed). The “Reach” tab, as the name implies, covers statistical information relating to the reachand engagement achieved by the page, as well as negative actions taken by users against the page (such as unlikes, hide actions, etc.).

Bankable looks at Reach on Facebook Insights and how to monitor Reactions, Comments, and Shares

Below the “Post Reach” section is the “Reactions, Comments, And Shares” section. This section breaks into the ground of engagement that the “Post Reach” section ignores. It measures engagement over the time frame that is specified in the bar at the top of the page. Three differently colored lines signify the trend of reactions, comments, and shares. These three categories can also be benchmarked in the sidebar to the right in order to gauge the average performance over time. This section is very important to look at in order to gauge the actual effectiveness and performance of posts. If your posts have high reach but low engagement, there may be a problem with the content that you are posting.

3. Posts tab: “When Your Followers are Online” and “Post Types” sections

Bankable looks at how to know when your fans are online so you know when to post to the largest audience

The “When Your Fans Are Online” section details times of high activity in the users that follow the page. Essentially, this section will inform the user when the best times of the day are to post. The “Times” portion of this section initially displays a graph of the levels of activity at various times of the day. This information is an average of all days of the week. Above, in the “Days” portion, the user can mouse over each day of the week and the graph will show the specific trend for that day compared to the average. This section is extremely important, as it directly informs the user when posts should be made on the page in order to achieve the most reach and engagement.

Looking at how Facebook Insights breaks down post types and how they perform in comparison to each other

In the same section, the “Post Types” button can be selected to show the success of varying post types. In this section, success is determined by reach and engagement. This section is extremely important, as it statistically shows the user how different kinds of posts perform historically on the page. This allows the user to determine what kind of content will have the most positive results when posted on the page.

4. People tab: entire tab

Looking at the "People" tab in Facebook Insights and how to utilize audience demographics

The “People” tab shows demographic information assessing the people who like the page, as well as people who view and interact with the page’s posts. The tab shows gender, age, and geographical location information for each section. The “Your Fans” section shows demographic information just for users who like the page. The “People Reached” shows demographic information for the number of people who had a post from the page served to them in the last 28 days. The “People Engaged” section shows demographic information for the users who have engaged with posts from the page in question. The “People Reached” and “People Engaged” sections also show how many of the users they are analyzing like the page. This section is one of the best ways for a page manager to assess their audience, and see what kind of audiences are being reached by the posts.

The reason these sections have been selected is because they represent information that is broad enough to benefit any page, while getting specific enough to allow pages to make specific inferences based off of their information. By utilizing the information found in these sections of Facebook Insights, users will not only be able to gauge their page growth and performance successfully, but will also be able to determine when and what kind of content they should post to best serve the audience that the page has gathered.