Four Vital Strategies From the Industry’s First Facebook Benchmark Report

April 7, 2014 by

Whether you are new to Facebook marketing or have been participating in its evolution for some time, it’s easy to see how quickly it is changing. As Facebook continues to hone its offerings to maximize revenue and marketer efficacy, the pace will continue at break-neck speed. However, just because Facebook is improving its offerings doesn’t mean that marketers are maximizing the opportunities in front of them. This is exactly why the team at ShopIgniter recently undertook a significant research project, The 2013 Social Rich Media Benchmark Report, which analyzed over 2,000 newsfeed posts and their two billion+ impressions.

The report aims to help marketers such as yourself understand post strategies that drive success in today’s Facebook advertising environment. In doing so, we unearthed a few findings critical to Facebook post strategy success. I’ll walk through a high-level view of what we found - and more importantly - how you can leverage the findings to drive successful campaigns.

1. Paid and organic content see different post type winners

One of the first things worth noting is that unpaid status posts averaged five times more organic impressions than any other post type. However, outside of status posts, putting an investment behind posts significantly changed their organic and viral reach - particularly offers. Video posts collected the largest amount of average viral impressions as a share of average total impressions with a 36 percent boost.

Related Class: How to Leverage Earned and Owned Media to Create Effective Paid Media Programs

2. Paid promotion affects engagement differently by post type 

Paid media also affects this metric, sometimes quite meaningfully. Yet, as you can see from this chart, the impact varies greatly across post types. It’s more helpful to look at the individual post type you’d like to share. Photo and Offer post types increase in engagement when paid media is applied, making them ideal units. Photos also had a high click-through rate (CTR) average compared to other post types when paid media was applied, further reinforcing the Photo post type as a good choice for paid, rich media campaigns.

3. Negative feedback is different by post type and paid vs. organic

High negative feedback rates decrease a post’s organic and viral reach, which makes it an important factor in performance as well as sentiment. As with most post types, negative feedback rates increased as paid media was applied. As you can see, Notes is the most disliked post, followed by Video. Yet, when we examined rich interactive experiences, we found an average of over six times lower negative feedback rate. It would seem that Facebook consumers prefer interactivity and content designed for their social mobile context.
The lessons:

  • Brands need to be smart about what post types they employ to support both short-term tactics and long-term strategic goals. One size does not fit all, especially when paid media is involved.
  • Facebook has emerged as a cost-effective channel, and putting media dollars behind your posts is a sound strategy - especially when it comes to offers and rich, interactive experiences.
  • Photo and Link posts drive the most engagement and clicks to maximize performance.
  • Be smart when thinking through how paid media will impact your key metrics. For example, do you want to maximize viral reach or your click-through rate?
  • If you take away nothing else, it’s that we are in a mobile-first market and you should only do desktop campaigns if you have the extra time and budget.

For a complete look at all the research, download the free report: The 2013 Social Rich Media Benchmark Report.

To create the perfect posting strategy for your business, and drive more Likes, Fans, and interactions, enroll in the Online Marketing Institute class, How to Market on Facebook Expert Tips and Best Practices today!


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