14 August 2014 Why Is Facebook Lying To Page Owners?
Even I’m getting over my anti-Facebook tirade at the moment, having recently called them out on manipulating people’s emotions and their great bait and switch on marketers. But they continue to grind my gears, and this time it’s as a page owner.
For those of you who run small pages, you’ll be familiar with these notifications that pop up regularly suggesting a post is “performing better than X% of other posts”.
These are just a few I’ve received through my hockey club’s Facebook page recently.
They are incredibly annoying, there’s no way to turn them off and one of the above I received a notification for seven times. But what I’m most interested in, is where this data comes from. What metrics is it based off, and over what time period? Facebook doesn’t provide any information that I could find, so I thought I’d see how accurate the figures were.
Without a date range or set of metrics, I have to make some assumptions. Facebook only allows me to review post data from April 2014 onwards (I’m not sure why), so that becomes my data set. And the three metrics I review are commonly reported on; unique reach, unique users engaged and engagement rate.
The first notification says that specific post performed better than 95% of other posts on the page. Of the 55 posts published at the time, that means it has to be in the top two. But upon analysis, it doesn’t come close, ranking 18th instead for reach, users engaged and engagement rate.
The second post would have to rank 15th or higher out of the 62 posts published at the time. Again not close at 48th for reach, 47th for engaged users and 37th for engagement rate.
The third post is a little better, also requiring a rank of 15th or higher out of 75 posts. It achieves this for reach (11th) and engaged users (12th), but not engagement rate (20th).
Happy to be corrected, but even this simplistic analysis tells us that Facebook is lying to page owners.
I’m sure it has nothing to do with the fact that each notification encourages you to spend money on promoting the post.