- Posted by wainscot
- On March 12, 2014
Facebook is an important tool for small business marketers. If you are an Admin for a Facebook page, you might have noticed some pretty significant changes recently. The most notable of these is the addition of the Pages to Watch feature, which allows Page Admins to track the statistics of their competitors pages.
InsideFacebook suggested that Facebook had begun testing the feature as early as August 2013, but like many other changes, Pages to Watch was rolled out over an extended period of time and only just recently became available for all Pages. But what IS “Pages to Watch”, and what will it mean for your business?
The Pages to Watch feature is now available to Admins of all Facebook Pages. Essentially, it’s a tool that lets you directly compare statistics for your page (increase in Likes and post engagement) to those of your competitors.
As shared on SocialMouths, Quintly compared page engagement (that is, percent of users that interact with posts by liking, commenting, or sharing) by page size and found that when normalized for number of Fans, pages with 10,000 to 100,000 Fans (Likes) had the highest rate of “People Talking About This” at over 5% in March 2013. But this data doesn’t help businesses gauge how competitors in their same industry or geographical area are doing. That’s where Pages to Watch comes in.
Pages to Watch allows Page Admins to select five to one hundred pages of competitors and similar companies and then keeps track of number of likes and engagement for each. For Monmouth Health & Life, one of the pages I’ve chosen to watch is Ocean Happening. By clicking on the Page Insights tab, I can see that Ocean Happening’s number of Likes increased by 3.7% this week and they had a total of 57 Likes, Comments, and Shares on posts.
When you add a page to your “Pages to Watch” list (for Monmouth Health & Life, I’ve added Bergen Health & Life as an example), the Admins of that page will be notified that someone has begun watching their page. Originally the feature allowed pages to see WHO was watching their page, but now they’re able to see just that “a page” is now watching them. So if you want to spy on other pages, know that they’ll be aware someone’s looking at them- they just won’t know it’s you.
It’s important to note that this feature won’t be accessible to everyone. According to Facebook, only pages with between 100 and 10,000 Likes are able to use the Pages to Watch feature. Many Facebook Page features- such as custom URLs and Offer Claims- are made available only once the Page has reached a certain minimum number of Likes, perhaps to require that some sort of legitimacy has been established, but it’s not clear why there is 10,000 Like maximum to using Pages to Watch.
If you’re a marketer that uses Facebook, then Pages to Watch will benefit you. If you run a small boutique, consider watching pages for similar stores in your area. Did they make a successful post about an upcoming sale? Perhaps your boutique would benefit from a similar promotion.
While it’s still a relatively new feature, Pages to Watch allows marketers to easily compare other pages, putting the numbers right there in one feature in the insights tab on the page admin panel, rather than leaving it all up to a guessing game. Having this data all in one place will only increase the importance of knowing how to understand and interpret analytical tools for social media.