Surprise! Timeliness Boosts Engagement On Facebook

If you're looking to boost engagement with your brand on Facebook, know that 70 percent of interactions occur within 60 minutes of a post.

Lane Bryant interaction feedback rate correlationWhen a brand posts in the middle of the day, it’s the greatest opportunity for east and west coast audiences in the U.S. to participate, there’s the greatest amount of feedback. But what’s not so obvious is that the interaction curve is super steep on Facebook.

We might have posts that get 500 interactions within five minutes of us posting a status update, but have only 1,500 interactions in total.

Get Timely

The bigger the brand is, the steeper the curve. Our analysis across the top pages on Facebook shows that 70 percent of interactions occur within 60 minutes of the post.

Thus, timing is quite important for big pages, those with over a million fans. As shown below, interactions, feedback rate, and impressions are linked together.
Interactions vs News Feed Coverage

Correlation is not causation, true — but it’s hard to deny that objects which are highly engaging are more likely to pull in the friends of fans who comment and like.

After all, for each user who sees your update but doesn’t interact, that’s 310 of their friends that don’t get the benefit of what your fan did. Think about the impact of this.

Now consider that your fan base is not some homogeneous blob, but active micro-communities of users with different interests and needs. How do you interact with them such that your communication can be as timely and relevant as that of their friends? This is quite a high bar.

So it’s no wonder that big brands are struggling to have one-on-one relationships at a large scale. They’re just not equipped to personalize the outbound communication and they are definitely not ready to handle the millions of potential inbound contacts. Yes, your users will talk back in social advertising — this is not one-way TV advertising.

Brand In Real Time

Your friends are real-time with you, so why isn’t your brand?

The good news is that if your social media team is just you or a couple folks trying to take on millions of users, you likely already have the solution, but don’t realize it. It’s your call center and store-level employees. These are your eyes and ears– folks who are already dealing with your customers on a day-to-day basis.

Are you equipping them with the tools to deepen their relationships, or are you trying to manage centrally in an artificial, incomplete way? Perhaps you don’t have the infrastructure, process, and training to allow these folks to function as mini spokespeople for your brand.

Nobody has software or process yet to handle social yet, despite what the sales people will tell you. But with a combination of some simple tools to listen (our company does have this), a process on your end, and a hand-selected group of enlightened folks across customer care and marketing, you can be successful here!

Is your Facebook fan base stale? Try this 60 second exercise!

Ready? Post this on your wall right now:

Fill in the blank: What I love most about my dad is ____________.

Take a screenshot in 60 seconds and let us know how many comments and likes you generated. We do this type of exercise on new clients get a barometer of whether they are getting traction in the News Feed. If your fans don’t respond to a direct question like this, then they’ve gone stale, much like an email list that hasn’t been tended to for months.

We tried this exercise before Mother’s Day, using the phrase, “What I love most about my mom is_______.” Here’s how this panned out on Lane Bryant after 60 seconds:

Screen shot 60 seconds
We posted this at 5 pm pacific standard time on a Saturday — not the most active time on Facebook, but good enough. It received 41 comments and 16 likes, which is 57 interactions and about a 2.5-to-1comment to interaction ratio; healthy.