Organisations are now becoming more aware of measuring the effectiveness of their social media presence, but what metrics to use? To gauge community growth, to compare the ROI between social media campaigns, to count product image views, organisations can (and should) tap into various resources to extract these answers.


One of the most popular social media metrics out there is Facebook Engagement, easily accessible by using Facebook’s new Page Insights (go to the Overview or Posts tab and there’s an Engagement column for all your posts).

But what do these numbers mean and what exactly is engagement?

Generally speaking, engagement on Facebook is when people perform actions on your Page. They may like a post, click on a link or comment on an image for example. With Facebook Insights, engagement is defined as post clicks, likes, shares and comments. But they also do something very handy – they enable you to split post clicks from likes, shares and comments – and there’s a good reason why.

We measure two forms of engagement: Absolute Engagement (the hard numbers) and Engagement Rate (the hard numbers with respect to your community size, which we’ll cover  in Part II). With Absolute Engagement it’s important to know the effect of the various types of engagement. For example, if someone likes a post on your page, that like has the potential to be seen by their friends – thereby building greater awareness. Likewise for comments and shares – these are all viral by nature. Post clicks i.e. when someone clicks on an image to see it full size, are important but non-viral in nature, so do not tap into one of social media’s major strengths. Below is how we treat these different types of engagement:

Absolute Engagement

  1. Active Engagement = Number of Likes, Comments and Shares (have a viral nature)

  2. Passive Engagement = Number of Post clicks, link clicks, video views, image clicks (non-viral)

  3. Total Engagement = Active Engagement + Passive Engagement

Total Engagement is a measure of the actions people are taking on your page and should be recorded at least monthly to make sure people are staying (or hopefully getting more) engaged with your content. This will answer the question: was last month’s content more engaging than the month before?

Passive Engagement is a measure of content consumption. People clicking on your post to read more or get a better look at your image is getting your content consumed (but not spread). This could be important if your objective is to drive people to your website by including links to it in your posts.

Active Engagement is a measure of how sharable your content is. When people like, share or comment, they are doing so in front of their friends so your content has an opportunity to be seen by more than just your immediate community.

So does it make a difference if a page has 1,000 page likes or 10,000 page likes? Yes, absolutely and that’s where we move into Engagement Rate, which will be covered in a post soon (if you can’t wait, email for some answers as he loves this stuff).


Team Mosh

Check out Part II of this Post here.

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