If a post falls on to a Facebook wall, does it make a sound?

Yesterday, there was a very interesting piece on All Facebook about fan consumption of wall posts. The piece recapped a study from a Facebook analytics tool called PageLever which showed “that fan page owners are grossly overestimating how many people they’re reaching through posts.” According to PageLever data, the overall average for posts being seen by fans is just 7.49% each day. And for pages with more than a million likes, the numbers are even more dismal: just 2.79% daily.

Source: PageLever, All Facebook

This reinforces two important considerations that come with posting to Facebook business pages:

  • Consistency is vital. Since each individual post won’t be seen by the majority of your audience, you can’t just put something out there once and expect the message to get through. Variety matters, but you may have to post about the same topic frequently. This does NOT, however, necessarily mean that you need to post dozens of times a day. Get too noisy in the news feed, and your audience will tune you out or leave your page. It’s a matter of consistency over months, not days.
  • Quality of fans beats quantity of fans, hands down, every day, end of discussion. Evan Hamilton made this point on Twitter, which is what initially turned my attention to the All Facebook piece. Too many brands are so busy courting new fans that they forget about the ones they already have. These numbers are just further evidence that bigger is not necessarily better, and that the best way to build an audience is to provide more value to those with whom you’re already connected.

With all this in mind, there are two questions your business needs to ask if you want to succeed on Facebook:

  • What’s your plan for sustaining momentum so that you’ll achieve the consistency you need over time?
  • Are you doing everything you can to reward and engage with your existing fans, or are you spending too much time trying to acquire new ones?

If your business has successfully addressed these challenges, share your ideas in the comments.

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