Measuring Facebook with Engagement

This article is part of the Travel 2.0 #social 101 Marketing Series.

Recently, we posted a few items on the Travel 2.0 blog in reference to the idea of a Facebook Engagement Rate.  First, our presentation on Facebook Measurement ‘Measuring the Impact of Facebook‘ and our recent post ‘The One Facebook Metric You Should Be Measuring.’

The response from the presentation / article has been tremendous.

Which has lead to a follow-up question:  Okay, how do I use the Facebook Engagement number?

Measuring Facebook with Engagement

First, some ‘rules’ about the metric:

  1. Your percentage will be unique to your Facebook page.
  2. Comparisons or benchmarking between competitors is not recommended due to the scale / fan differences inherit with Facebook.  That means pages with a lot of fans will naturally have a lower overall percentage due to the sheer number of fans.
  3. Use the metric as an internal benchmark of Fan Page health.  A higher percentage means more conversation about your destination, hotel, brand.  Which is a good thing.
  4. Combine the Facebook Engagement Metric with overall Lifetime Likes for a clear picture of Facebook success.

Okay, enough rules, let’s look at an example from a current Travel 2.0 client.

Travel 2.0: Measuring Facebook Fans

As you can see on the graph above, we have our total Lifetime Likes (‘fans’).

While the ‘fans’ number was consistent from August to November, we can see a huge spike in November and December.  If we were simply measuring total fans, that spike is great.  No worries, everyone loves us.

‘Boss, boss, come look at this! We are viral!’

But, let’s overlay the Engagement percentage on the graph…again, the number of fans who were actually responding, interacting, commenting on your Facebook posts…and see what happens.

Reminder, the formula is: Monthly Active Users / Lifetime Likes = Engagement Rate.

Travel 2.0: Facebook Engagement Client Example

Ah, not so good.

Sure, that huge spike in fans during November and December looked good in our basic ‘popularity’ report, but it really does not hold up when we look at the quality of those fans.

We added more than 600 fans, but our Engagement percentage dropped from 12% to 6%.

Congrats, you added fans who wanted a quick reward, but have no interest in a long-term relationship with your destination.

After developing a social strategy and implementing a strategic communication plan in January (when we took over the account), the Engagement Rate improved while continuing to build quality fans.  Granted not as quickly, but these fans are actually interested in the destination, rather than just a quick reward.

Quality over quantity.

So, use the Facebook Engagement Rate as a benchmarking metric for your own Facebook health.

And remember, your percentage and rate will be different than other destinations, CVBs, hotels, attractions.

Then again, so should your Facebook strategy.

Comment? @travel2dot0 or email.