Study: Only 3% Of Facebook News Feed Is Promoted Content
Socialbakers study finds 24-29% of posts seen by a typical Facebook user come from Pages, with only about 10% of those being promoted posts.
Only 3 percent of Facebook’s News Feed is made up of advertising, according to a new Socialbakers study.
That will probably come as a surprise to those who assume that Facebook’s News Feed ad load is higher, driving as it does more than a billion dollars a month in advertising revenue, but Socialbakers found that typical users are seeing few sponsored posts when they scroll through their feeds on the desktop.
Looking at more than 900 users during August and September, Socialbakers reported that the overwhelming majority of the content — 71 to 76 percent — was posts by friends while 24 to 29 percent came from Pages, owned by owned by companies, celebrities, public figures and organizations. Of the posts by Pages, 9 to 10 percent were promoted. Such sponsored posts made up 3 percent of the overall total of posts seen by subjects in the study.
Facebook doesn’t release details about the content makeup of people’s News Feeds, which are determined by its famously complicated algorithm, so studies like this one are handy for tea-leaf-reading marketers. The Socialbakers’ survey panel was selected from users of the Socialbakers social analytics tools so it is likely a more technically savvy group than an average set of people on Facebook. That might account for the low session length Socialbakers reported. In about half of the 23,000 sessions studied, users viewed only four posts before exiting. Only 15 percent of sessions lasted for more than 20 posts.
A couple other interesting findings:
- If the second post on the News Feed was a post by a Page, there was 46 percent chance that it was promoted.
- Video posts by brand Pages were equally spread throughout the News Feed – they didn’t generally get pushed to the top or the bottom.
Socialbakers also released new data about the type of Pages that are performing the best on Facebook, and it’s a runaway from publishers and media organizations. Two years ago, according to Socialbakers’ data from 100,000 Pages, brands had higher engagement (the total of likes, comments and shares) than media outlets. But brand engagement has stayed flat while media interaction has soared and is now three times higher.