PBS Engage - Who Can You Reach on Facebook?


Lauren Saks from PBS Engage offers some insights about the reach of Facebook:

Are you nervous about setting up a page for your station?  Think it won't be worth the time and effort?  Think again.

The PBS Facebook fan page boasts over 70,000 fans.  And they are a talkative bunch.  One morning, the page was updated to tell the fans about a new photo tool for parents that puts your child's picture next to their favorite PBS character.  By 11:00am it already had more than 20 comments and 80 "thumbs up."  Each update we post receives comments galore, which translates to both buzz and pageviews. 

Facebook is one of the most rapidly growing social networks, and the demographics might surprise you.  Check out who is a PBS fan on Facebook right now:

Age Female Male Overall
  64% 36%  
13-17 1% 1% 3%
18-24 7% 4% 11%
25-34 25% 14% 39%
35-44 20% 11% 31%
45+ 11% 5% 17%

This chart tells me that the Facebook audience is not quite what I expected it to be. I assumed it would largely 13-24 year olds. Turns out, the range is quite varied.

Just imagine the audience you could be reaching - to announce upcoming specials, events or new shows.  Oregon Public Broadcasting uses Facebook to promote free screenings and other community activities.  The page has over 3,000 fans that take an active role in sharing their opinions with each other and the station.  Once someone comments on your page, everyone in their network can see it, encouraging them to check out your page.  Your audience will grow rapidly.  Ah the power of a network. 

Setting up a fan page doesn't take long.  You can customize it with videos, pictures and events.  Take a look at our best practices on Facebook marketing to get you started.  If you need more help, just let me know.  You can find me at lssaks@pbs.org or on Twitter @PBSengage.

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