Are you a Facebook Engager or Lurker?


Helen Crossley – Head of Marketing Science for Facebook ANZ

Helen Crossley – Head of Marketing Science for Facebook ANZ

This week’s media partner session with Helen Crossley was an absolute cracker with the Head of Marketing Science for Facebook ANZ cementing just how big the juggernaut platform is. The session went through the Aussies on Facebook study (conducted by Nielsen about 2 years ago) providing a more detailed analysis of the results. Despite being a relatively older study, marketers, agencies and even Facebook are only just now beginning to digest the implications of the results.

Through a few powerful slides, Helen highlights that Facebook has a greater reach than all the Free-to-air channels combined. Powerful numbers. She continues to hammer home the power of Facebook’s reach highlighting that Facebook makes up 12% of our media consumption, a massive result for the platform that launched only 10 years ago. She also explored that Facebook user behaviour is changing to be a mobile first content discovery platform. This is particularly evident in the uplift of site referral traffic by Facebook increasing a massive 170%. This result isn’t only big for Facebook, but big for content publishers who now rely on the social space for growth.

But what struck a chord with me the most during the session was the detailed look into two different personas on the platform. One, the passive engager whom may see a post but doesn’t engage with content. The other, an engaged user who may use multiple social networks and loves the engaging aspect social provides. I see it as the lurkers Vs the engagers. Yet for both of these different audience personas we regularly use an engagement metric (clicks, likes) as a measure of success. So if an engagement result isn’t necessarily right for every audience, how do we measure the value of media activity to the passive audience? And from a user perspective, how can the Facebook algorithm adapt to the user behaviour (Lurker Vs Engager) one exhibits on the platform?

Facebook’s Online Campaign Ratings product with Nielsen is aimed as a solution to the measurement problem. Rather than focusing on clicks and other social engagements (likes, comments), the product is able to give marketers an idea of their reach, frequency, gross rating points, and biographical data. The third party data product moves to more of a TV-like measurability strategy.

The recent launch of the premium Facebook 15 second auto play video units plays straight to this change of measurement by Facebook to put more focus upon reach, much like how TV is measured. As the Facebook unit has only just launched, time will tell the value of the unit and in particular, the reception by agencies of the auto play functionality.

Personally, I know that a lot of time I will lurk Facebook and see several Promoted Page posts. I may not engage with the content but how do you place value in my uplift in awareness of the brand? Watch this space as Facebook continues to place value on its reach capabilities.

What are your thoughts on Facebook’s recent move into reach products (OCR, brand uplift polls, premium video)? Keen to hear your thoughts below.

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