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Let’s face it, not only are Facebook fan pages the craze with clients these days, but one of the biggest obstacles with Facebook is tracking and measurement.
Although Facebook’s analytics are slowly improving, for us data junkies it isn’t near fast enough nor is it sufficient information.
Fan page owners are currently able to get insight into:
(1) The total number of fans and active fans on their page. Active fans are defined as Facebook users who have engaged with your page in some way.
(2) Gender demographic data
(3) Fan subscription and un-subscription trends
(4) Language and location statistics
To the untrained eye, you’re left rather un-impressed with Facebook’s Insights. And while there is something to be said about its limitations, let’s focus on what we can learn from them. Like any analytics platform, you should use this data to find trends and form hypotheses. Here are some ideas to get you started and in the right frame of mind.
Take a look at which status updates, video posts, etc. get the most fan interaction (comments and likes) and determine why. Is it because you are giving something away? How did that affect your fan growth rate? What demographic was most active – male or female? You need to ask all of these questions so you can maximize the effectiveness of your updates and posts.
You want to maximize fan interaction, and in order to do that you need to have an understanding of who is paying attention and why. By looking at a user’s demographic you can better target them with future updates. It’s also a good idea to see how this compares to your website’s users. Does that match up? What you need to determine is how this affects your online marketing strategy.
Let’s say that your company has a small clothing line for those die-hard fans. It’s not the focus of your business, but it’s great for branding and you can make some additional money off of it. Knowing that your active users are primarily male or female, when you mention the clothing line on your Facebook page, you can feature a product that would appeal to that particular demographic. If it is primarily female, make sure you feature a women’s article of clothing. This will better resonate with your audience and should increase conversions as a whole.
One area you’ll want to keep a close eye on is un-fanning metrics. It can be difficult to determine what exactly caused someone to decide to no longer be a fan of your page, but there are some questions you can ask to narrow it down. Here are some things you should look at:
- How frequently are you updating your page? Perhaps your audience needs more or less updates to keep their interest or to not overwhelm them. Test this and take it one step further by testing different days of the week to determine which days get you the most fan interaction.
- How engaging are your updates/posts? Are you giving users a reason to want to monitor your updates and to want to get involved in the conversation? You should try different types of updates to see how it affects the number of fans you have.
- Are you losing most of your fans after you give something away or run a contest? This is a common way to lose fans as people will become a fan of the page just for a chance to win. The question now becomes: how can you keep them around? Do you offer up some type of minor giveaway at random times to fans?
Facebook’s Insights provides us with numerous opportunities to ask “why?” Asking questions about the information they give you plus a little out-of-the-box thinking (e.g. using a URL shortener like kl.am to track outbound links within your page) can go a long way to getting the most out of Facebook’s Insights.
Taylor Pratt is the Product Marketing Manager at Raven Internet Marketing Tools. With Raven you can conduct research and analysis, manage link building campaigns, track search engine trends, instantly produce ROI reports for SEO and SMM campaigns, and collaborate with team members with intuitive multi-user features.