First of all, have you taken the time to make yourself familiar with Facebook Insights? If not, you need to stop what you’re doing and check this analytics tool out. It offers a wealth of information such as letting you know when your fans are online, which of your posts generate the most engagement, advanced filters, and much more.
Another great benchmarking tool to give your business a competitive edge on Facebook is the site’s new Pages to Watch feature. This feature can be found in Facebook Insights and allows you to watch other pages on the social media site to make comparisons about your Facebook marketing strategy to your competition.
As long as you have between 100 and 10,000 Facebook fans, you can use the Pages to Watch feature to monitor the activity of up to 100 pages. Would you want to watch the activity on 100 different pages? Probably not. But you could at least setup the feature to keep tabs on a few of your competitors.
Here is how to setup the Pages to Watch feature:
- Go to Facebook Insights and click on Overview. Then click on Add Pages.
- You will need to select a minimum of 5 pages to watch. It’s ideal if you can come up with more than 5 pages to watch as the point of this feature is to monitor trends. The more pages you are watching, the easier it will be to pick up on trends.
- Type the name of the company’s page that you want to watch into the search bar and click Watch Page.
Once you’ve made your list of pages to watch, Facebook will also suggest several similar pages that you may want to add to your list. It’s important to note that if you choose to add these suggested pages to your list, those pages will receive a notification that someone is watching them. Those pages, however, will not know that your specific brand is watching them, so don’t worry!
What I really like about the Pages to Watch feature is that you don’t have to “like” the page to keep track of the activity. Therefore, your competitors never have to know that you are checking them out.
Here are some other tips to keep in mind when using the Pages to Watch feature:
- Follow pages that your fans are also following, even if the pages have nothing to do with your industry. There is likely a reason why your fans are choosing to follow these pages. To find pages that your fans like to follow, type “pages liked by people who like [your company’s Facebook page]” into the graph search bar. A list of these pages should then populate.
- Use this tool to find out what type of content resonates best with your fans. For example, this feature will share trends that may inform you that your target audience prefers visual content over wordy status updates.
- Knowing how often to post to Facebook is one of the most common questions that we hear from our clients, and this tool can at the very least let you know how often your competitors are posting to the site.