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Executive Report - By Thomas Baekdal - November 2011

Beyond Facebook Analytics, The Guide

When you look at Facebook Insights, you need to find that story that created the numbers. You need to know why something happened.

A couple a weeks ago, Facebook came out with a new "Insights" dashboard. It was a big improvement from what we had before, mostly because the metrics are all based on people instead of interactions.

Why is this important? Well, the old system might show that you had 200 comments within the past week. But it didn't tell you anything about how many *people* there are behind the numbers. You didn't know if it was 200 people who each posted one comment, or 10 people who each posted 20 comments.

But with the new analytics, you do know. It will no longer tell that you had 200 comments, instead it will tell you how many *unique people* interacted with you. That is an extremely important change. It is the same with all the other metrics in the new system: reach, likes, engagement, talked about (sharing), etc. They are now all based on unique people, and far more useful.

But I will not show you how the new Facebook Insights work. There are already thousands of articles about that around the web. What I will do is take you beyond the numbers because all analytics are useless unless you apply them to a specific goal or activity.

Note: If you want to know what each element is about, I suggest you take a look at the video from John Haydon below, or check out this excellent PDF guide from Facebook.


Facebook Insights, beyond the numbers

The truth about all types of analytics is that the real story is somewhere between the lines. The numbers you see are just the result of that story. When you look at Facebook Insights, you need to find that story that created the numbers. You need to know why something happened.

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Baekdal is a magazine for media professionals, focusing on media analysis, trends, patterns, strategy, journalistic focus, and newsroom optimization. Since 2010, it has helped publishers in more than 40 countries, including big and small publishers like Condé Nast, Bonnier, Schibsted, NRC, and others, as well as companies like Google and Microsoft.

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Thomas Baekdal

Founder, media analyst, author, and publisher. Follow on Twitter

"Thomas Baekdal is one of Scandinavia's most sought-after experts in the digitization of media companies. He has made ​​himself known for his analysis of how digitization has changed the way we consume media."
Swedish business magazine, Resumé


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