Mailbag: Benchmark statistics for Facebook

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Adam asked in the Marketing Over Coffee LinkedIn Group:

“Does anyone have any benchmark stats for Facebook, in terms of reach, viral reach and engagement? I want to analyse the growth and engagement of our Facebook page but have nothing to compare it to. 🙁 Are there any good resources out there for this? I assume it differs a lot, depending on product category, etc.”

Two answers here:

1. Does anyone have benchmark statistics? Absolutely. You’ll find them on Mashable every day, and you can get some in tools like Agorapulse’s Facebook Barometer.

2. Does anyone have any useful, reliable benchmark statistics? Absolutely not. Not that I’d want to bet my business on.

Here’s why: even in the same vertical, you’re going to have wildly different statistics. Suppose you had a super niche CPG brand like Domaine Chandon Australia, a wine brand:

People who like Chandon Australia

The statistics and benchmarks for wine brands are going to vary wildly, as some brands have chosen to market to restauranteurs while others have aimed for consumers. As a result, times of day of activity, days of week activity, reach, and engagement will all equally vary. The restauranteurs will be active in a counter-cyclical fashion to the consumers, as consumers will be at leisure while the restauranteurs are occupied – possibly even dining at their establishments. One’s a B2B crowd (wine sales to business), and one’s a B2C crowd.

But they’d all get lumped together under the CPG wine category in the benchmark statistics.

The solution is the same one I proposed here. Don’t bother with benchmarks – focus on continuously improving your own metrics instead.

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