In 2012 the study “The Anatomy of the Facebook Social Graph” showed that a user with 100 friends on Facebook had 27,500 friends of friends. Based on the publicly available data in this paper, the average US user (in 2012) had 214 friends on Facebook. In 2014 the number was closer to 315 . Using the conservative number, that would equate to an average friends of friends count of about 60,000.
I currently have 2,227 friends (Oct 2016). Consequently, (if everything is equal) my reach is a tad bit more than 500,000 people [using the 2012 data]. So – of my 1/2 million potential reach, how many people actually see my posts on the Facebook wall? More recent studies have shown the number is about 1.5% (about 7,500 in my case) and that number is shrinking. Why? Because more and more people are posting more and more content on Facebook.
The reach will also be dependent on who’s online and when they’re online. That means you should know when to post and what to post.
Jon Loomer says that you can expect to reach a little more than a quarter of the fans who are currently online. The number will depend on several factors. The total number of fans reached with a post, the total number of fans online when the post was created and the percentage of fans reached, who could be reached. He has a lot more to say – – check it out.
In April of 2010, Facebook launched the “Open Graph” API. The platform allows you to connect your .com website to Facebook. When you post content to the Facebook wall it makes great sense to use the tools Open Graph created to increase the chances of having your content found. The programming language helped connect plugins like the Like Button, the Activity Feed, Recommendations, Comments, Live Stream and others. You can see an example of Facebook’s live stream on our site. Look to the right navigation bar on this page and see our Service Area. Each city page pulls information from Fan Pages we’ve created.
Organically (without paying Facebook to push my content) my reach is limited.
Of the 7,500 people I am able to reach many have privacy settings that prevent my content from being seen. As my audience grows my content is also less likely to be seen because not all 7,500 are online line at the same time. So, how can I change that dynamic? With money – of course! I can pay Facebook to show my friends (and others) my content. But how relevant is my content? How does Facebook know who to show my content to? They use algorithms (computerized formulas) that examine which posts people respond to both while on and off Facebook. They also track age, gender and a host of other personal data.
So – before you get all giggly and wiggly about your Facebook reach and how many people actually see your posts, remember that unless you pay to play – your stories, pictures and videos aren’t touching many friends, friends of friends or anyone, for that matter.
It’s more evidence you should focus your efforts on a multitude of marketing strategies that include Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and other social media…and don’t forget that old tried and true method – WORD OF MOUTH. Tell your friends to tell their friends and their colleagues about your services. They’ll spread the word. If you treat your clients right they’ll do that organically – without you having to pay them or give them gifts.