Reach Vs Impressions: What You Should Be Tracking
When looking at your social media engagement, it can be confusing keeping up with the different terms, what you should be looking at, and what matters the most. Two of the terms you will often hear (and need to keep track of) are reach and impressions. While these are similar, there are differences, and it is important that you understand each of them.
What Is Reach?
When looking at your social media analytics, reach refers to the number of users that saw your content. Reach is important because it shows you how many individual users saw your content.
What Is An Impression?
An impression is the number of times your content was viewed. This includes views from each user who saw your content and the number of multiple views from a single user. Your impressions are likely to be higher than your reach, and that is a good thing! If you have content that a user likes, they might view it again for personal enjoyment, or to show a friend your content in person, rather than sending it to them.
Which Is More Important?
Reach and impression are both important. However, when deciding which is “more” important, it really comes down to what your goals are. If you are focused on growing your brand and raising awareness and engagement, then reach is more important. If you want to focus on ads, or how your content is performing with your audience, you’ll want to focus more on impressions. Both metrics are helpful analytics, so if you can, track both!
Reach Vs Impression On Social Media:
Each platform breaks down reach vs impression a little differently.
On Facebook, reach is defined by how many people saw content on, or about, your Facebook page. This includes content you have posted or content you were tagged in. Facebook impressions are the number of times your content has entered a user’s screen. This can be through the user’s newsfeed, through search, or by going directly to your Facebook page.
Instagram uses a standard measurement of reach vs impressions. Accounts reached are defined by the number of accounts that have seen your content at least once. Impressions are how often your content was seen. Instagram analytics are fairly simple to break down. You can choose to view reach and impressions from the last week, the last month, or the previous 90 days. You can also break your analytics down into different demographics such as location, gender, or age. This is beneficial in helping you figure out where you are succeeding, and where your audience was not as responsive to your content.
Twitter is one of the more difficult social platforms to track. For each Tweet, you can see the total impressions. You can choose to turn on Twitter’s analytics, which will break down the impressions for you. Unfortunately, Twitter does not show you the reach of your Tweets.
Once you get the hang of tracking reach and impressions, it is fairly simple to track. Most social media platforms offer some way to track reach, impressions, or both. With a little practice, you can use these analytics to help you reach your goals and impress your audience!