This week, let us take a break from the apps, services and features used to monitor your presence online. Instead, we will have a look on one of the terms you will read or hear about in reports: Reach. What does reach mean in Social Media, and how do we calculate it?
The fastest way to explain reach would be: How many people saw your message, update, movie or tweet? However there is more to it, and the way it is defined in Social Media differs among the different networks and channels.
Curtesy of http://helen-lingard.com/
Reach according to Facebook
There are two variations of reach in Facebook’s world: Organic and Viral.
When you like a page on Facebook, you will from that moment get updates from that page. The more interested you are in the page (according to Facebooks algorithms), the higher up in your news feed they will go. This is defined as organic reach. Facebook Insights tells you the number of unique people who have seen at least one of these updates the last week.
If you share a post made by a page, and your friends see it, it is defined as viral reach. Actually, if you like a post or comment on it, it might turn into a story on your friend’s news feeds. Really successful pages should therefor always strive to create engaging content, leading to news stories outside your page’s own reach, thereby increasing the number of potential new fans.
A graph showing the reach of a page I manage
An easy way to see how well your page is doing is to look at the box saying “People talking about this”. This is the number of people who have, in one way or another, created a news story about your page (and therefore creating viral reach) in the last week. According to my observations today, most pages have less than 10% of their fans actually creating a stories.
Reach on Twitter
On Twitter, there is a slight problem with measuring reach, namely that Twitter itself does not offer any proper statistics. Therefore you have to rely on third party services. One of them is Tweetreach, which I will probably write an introduction to in the weeks to come. Tweetreach works somewhat like a search engine. You enter a tweet, hashtag or link, and get a report on how many people it has reached. Since Tweetreach can not know if your tweet is being seen or not, they define reach as the total number people who have had the tweet (or #hashtag if that is what you search for) sent to their timeline.
The biggest potential with Twitter is the possibility for a certain phrase or hashtag to start trending. This means that it is one of the most used the last hour or so. With clever marketing skills, or just tipping attendees at an event about the “official hashtag” of the day, you can give your reach a boost otherwise unattainable.
Do you have any other questions about reach, Twitter or Facebook? Contact me!