Most Relevant Measurement In Social Media Marketing: Impressions vs Reach
Everybody knows that social media is critical to market and create more awareness of your business. But, how do you know if your social media marketing campaign works as expected? Is there a way to measure or calculate your efforts?
Well, there is. It is called engagement with your audience measurement, and it depends on a few factors. Also, when calculating the engagement you have with your audience, there are a couple of key terms, you should be aware of such as impressions vs reach.
Reach determines the overall number of people who see a Facebook post, a tweet you made, or an Instagram story you posted.
For example, if you have posted 50 new pictures or other types of content on social media platforms and around 300 users have interacted with your posts, then your ‘reach’ would be 300. As simple as that.
On the other hand, the total number of occasions social media pages have been showcasing your content is called ‘impressions’. Impressions do not record the users that interacted with your post, but only those who saw your post.
Fundamental Differences - Impressions vs Reach
That’s why ‘impressions’ are not the same thing as ‘reach’. If your content were displayed 400 times on social media, your impressions would be exactly 400.
Whereas these metrics are comparable, there are a few fundamental differences and patterns to take in consideration.
‘Impressions’ are higher, or better said, more valuable than ‘reach’ in most cases. The reason is that impressions count appearance, while reach measures real user clicks.
The amount of impressions is often one of the best indicators of the number of followers your social media account, or webpage has. Equally, reach shows how many of those followers are interested in engaging or buying from you.
Pretty easy to follow so far, right? Impressions count exposure, reach sums up all possible interactions. However, several social media pages have their own rules on how they count, calculate, and display both impressions and reach.
If you would like to rank your account over others, it is essential to know what you have to pay attention to.
Social Media Marketing - Facebook Impressions vs Reach
The number of occasions your content appeared on screens define impressions on Facebook. If a user scrolls through a post on their timeline, then scrolls back up to that post, this equivalent to one impression.
In case, the user rechecks Facebook in 24 hours and scroll through the same content again – Facebook counts it as two impressions.
While the general industry standards for ads count an impression if an ad appears on a user’s timeline, Facebook is a little more complicated. Furthermore, impressions are calculated in the same way for video and image ads.
As a result, a video doesn’t need to be played to be counted as an impression. To see how many users viewed the content you post, look under the ‘Viewed Impressions’ text of ‘Facebook for Business’ section.
Now, as we described Facebook impressions and reach, let’s talk a little about the impressions on different social media apps, how they work and how you can make the best out of them for your online business.
As we’ve learnt above, different apps measure reach and impressions in their unique way. Take your time to study the small differences between apps to boost your analysis of your results reports.
Social Media Marketing - Twitter Impressions vs Reach
Twitter gives you a lot of analytics without any extra cost. The platform immediately presents the results, as soon as you’re logged in. Whenever a user sees one of your tweets, you’ve received an impression.
If a tweet earns 500 impressions, and the number of tweets is 300, your impressions for that thread are 800. Those are all displayed on the site.
If you click on the “Tweets” button on the app, you can check your impressions in a bar graph.
You will see the number of your tweets and the number of organic impressions you’ve gained, however, note that reach isn’t a trackable metric. Twitter records engagement (clicks on a tweet) and presents them in a line graph on the same page.
Social Media Marketing - Instagram Impressions vs Reach
Instagram count separate reach and impressions in different ways. Instagram impressions come from how many times a user sees a story, post, or IGTV video. Instagram counts unique users interactions counted as reach.
In this situation, “Unique” means a mix of followers and users who your post is displayed to based on common interests. For example, because you like and follow content from a travel agency, your news feed is populated with suggestions of travel-related posts. You are a unique user in that case.
Conclusion - Which metric should I focus on?
Both impressions and reach are essential metrics to focus on, both giving you numbers about leads and who is seeing posts, critical to calculating the engagement you have with your audience.
However, as a digital marketing agency covering Oxfordshire, we understand that working with impressions, reach, and various social media platforms might be too alien to you.
That’s why we are always here to help so feel free to give us a call today, to arrange a one-hour free consultation. The coffee’s on us!