15 January 2015,
Organic Traffic

If you’re getting flack over the lack of engagement on your company Facebook page, here’s a fact that you can use to fight back. 90% of social media engagement comes from only 30% of your social media audience.

I even have a graphic from Vision Critical to back it up.

visioncritcial volumeVision Critical’s new report “What Social Media Analytics Can’t Tell You” tells us that there are a lot of lurkers out there who aren’t being counted. For the report, they surveyed the followers of three companies —a major motion picture studio, a renowned broadcasting company and a cross-category apparel brand. What they found was that a whopping 52% of Facebook followers on those accounts were lurkers — people who post once a week or less. 19% were dabblers posting 2 to 4 times a week.

Enthusiasts post 5 or more times a week and when they say more they mean more as in 100’s of posts in a single week. These enthusiasts are the ones that carry your branded message out into the world, they share it with their many friends and add value to your posts. Unfortunately, this is only 29% of your audience so if you’re basing all of your marketing decisions on these amplifiers, you might be getting your audience all wrong.

In this survey, most of the enthusiasts were women age 35-54. Men and people over 55 had more of a tendency to be lurkers. So it might seem that the majority of your audience is female but that’s not really so.

Concentrating mainly on your enthusiasts does have its upside. 34% of enthusiasts made social media-inspired purchases. That was only true for 20% of lurkers. Now, there could be a little chicken or the egg at work here. It could be that lurkers aren’t buying because they’re being under-served. Or it could be because most lurkers are men and men are less likely to buy based on a social post. (Lots to think about here.)

Vision Critical did find some common ground. Lurkers, Dabblers and Enthusiasts all ranked funny or human interest content high on their list of topics to follow on Facebook. Facebook games were also popular with all three types of users. Food, DIY and Home scored high with enthusiast but not with lurkers. Oddly, 65% of lurkers said they liked to watch cooking shows on TV, so I guess they’re just more passive observer than active doer.

Vision Critical has a lot more to say on the subject but I’m going to wrap it up here with this; in some cases, chasing lurkers is a waste of time. Even if you reach them, they’re less likely to buy, share and support your business. But it can’t hurt to do a little digging into your follower stats to see just how representative your enthusiasts are compared to your followers as a whole.

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