With over 2.7 billion monthly active users and 1.82 billion daily users, Facebook is the largest social network in the world. What started as a way for students to network has grown into an essential marketing tool for more than 90 million small businesses.
All these users generate a lot of data.
To help businesses harness the sheer amount of information created on the platform, Facebook released its Insights tool, which shares data on the best day to post, the best time to post, and which posts are performing well.
If you’re marketing on Facebook, figuring out how all of those numbers relate to your business and audience can be confusing at first.
But do not worry. This article explains how to analyze Facebook data to get valuable metrics about who comes to your page and who clicks. In the end, you’ll gain a better understanding of how Insights can help you connect with current and potential customers.
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How to analyze Facebook data
Facebook Insights is divided into two main categories: Audience Insights and Page Insights.
- Audience information gives metrics on your Facebook audience, which helps you create relevant content, improve ad targeting, and get more people to your page.
- Page preview displays analytics for your page, so you can see which posts are performing well and which are not.
This article focuses on Audience Insights, to help you understand existing and potential customers. For a detailed overview of how to collect insights from Page Insights, check out this Facebook Marketing Guide.
To access the data gold mine in Audience Insights, you must first create a sales page. Once your page is set up, go to Audience Insights by clicking Analyze and Report in your Business Tools menu. Now comes the detective. Pull the profile of your business’s target audience for reference because it’s time to do some research.
Step 1: Choose your audience.
A pop-up will appear and ask you to choose between the following options:
- Everyone on Facebook: Start here for information to narrow down your target audience or get new people to your page.
- People connected to your page: Click on this one to learn more about everyone who likes your page and see if your target audience shows up.
This part requires some strategy. Are you using Insights to build a buyer persona, see if your strategy is attracting the right people, know your audience’s interests, or whatever? By having a goal in mind, it is easier to use the information.
Step 2: Filter based on your goals.
With your goal set, it’s time to narrow down the audience. You can filter by:
- Age and gender
- Page Connections
Knowing where your audience in the world lives is useful for a number of reasons. If you are an online store looking to grow, you might want to know if a specific country is interested in your products.
If your business has a physical location, select your city for relevant local statistics. And if you’re not tied to any location constraints, keep it open by including countries from around the world.
2. Age and sex
All Facebook users must be at least 18 years old, so keep this in mind when evaluating audiences. If you are looking for a specific buyer personality, filter by that age group.
But if you’re looking to expand your audience, it’s worth expanding your age range or considering both genders to see if you’re missing out on potential customers.
This is where filtering gets fun – and a little tricky. Keep your search broad by selecting a handful of common interests, like food and reading, or select dozens of interests for a group of targeted people.
You have the freedom to play around with the drop-down filters or type whatever comes to mind in the search bar. Cooking, entertainment, Adventure, Flight, Tech, Cake.
The list goes on, so let your imagination run wild. Just keep an eye on the number of people in your audience as you refine. If it drops below 1000 people, Facebook will not fill in the data.
4. Page connections
This filter displays the pages most liked by users of your audience profile. If you are looking for competitors, this can help you know who to watch. Maybe you’re looking for content inspiration, and browsing the connected pages will give you ideas for a campaign collaboration or a giveaway. Either way, it’s good to know what other pages are showing up in your audience’s News Feed.
Step 3: Understand your audience.
Ring out the applause – you’ve filtered your audience profile. Now is the time to dig deeper into four categories: Demography, I like the page, Location, and Activity.
Facebook Insights allows you to go beyond the basics to see audience information, including Language, Relationship status, Education, Job titles, and Market segments. Let’s say you are a new food blogger targeting males between the ages of 18 and 32.
If you plug this information in, you can get a detailed look at what your audience does for their job, their level of education, or even whether they cook mostly for one or more people.
If your ideal audience turns out to be largely unique with time-consuming office jobs, this can help you target your content strategy.
Maybe your audience would like an article on easy meal ideas for work or meals that are even better as leftovers. I’m generalizing here, but the more you dig into the demographics, the more data you have to refine your marketing efforts.
I like the page
Similar to Interests filter, this option shows what your audience likes. Check out the top categories to find out what matters most to people, with options like Movies, Charities, Companies, The music, Public figures, News & Media, and Some products.
Maybe those men who cook meals for one are interested in TV shows like “The Chef Show” or “Chef’s Table”. If you had to create a blog post recap from your favorite cooking shows or episodes, it would probably be fine for this audience. The key here is to look at what content is relevant both within and outside of your industry to review competitors and connected interests.
Use this filter to explore the main countries, cities and languages of your audience profile. Let’s say you’re based in the US, but find out that your audience has a major presence in Montreal, Canada.
It might be helpful to adjust your marketing efforts to include content that speaks to both Americans and Canadians. And if you are expanding your audience, you may even consider adding a French option to your website to meet the needs of Quebec customers.
See how active your audience is compared to the average Facebook user. The most important information in this section is the activity of the last 30 days, broken down by actions such as comments, Liked messages, Shared messages, and Clicked ads.
You might be interested in serving Facebook ads, but you don’t know if someone in your audience would click. With activity data, you get a better idea of how many people would take action. For a more detailed look at how to analyze Facebook ad performance, take a look at this Facebook advertising guide.
Explore more information on Facebook
Now you can use the power of Audience Insights to help you build buyer personas, narrow your target audience, and grow your audience. But if you’re on a research roll, you can explore more metrics under Page Insights to see how your content is performing, what people are resonating with, and what posts to promote.
So, the next time you’re wondering if you’re attracting the right followers or looking for out-of-the-box ideas for engaging your audience, grab Facebook Insights and put the data to work.