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buddy-keywords-sep-2011.JPGThe keyword “dollars off” in a retail offer-related Facebook post provides the highest user engagement out of 10 popular choices, according to a September 2011 report from Buddy Media. Data from “Strategies for Effective Facebook Wall Posts” indicate retail offer-related posts including “dollars off” receive a 55% higher than average engagement, followed by posts containing “coupon,” which have engagement 39% above average.

Interestingly, the popular keyword “sale” has an engagement rate close to 30% below average, while the keywords “save,” “deal,” “% off” and “bargain” also have lower-than-average engagement rates.

Concise Posts Drive Engagement

buddy-character-length-sep-2011.JPGBuddy Media analysis indicates there is a strong negative correlation between post length and engagement for the retail industry. Generally speaking, the longer the post, the less engaging fans find it. Specifically, retail brand wall posts less than 80 characters in length receive 66% higher engagement than longer posts.

Furthermore, very concise posts between one and 40 characters generate the highest engagement. These receive engagement 86% higher than average, but only 5% of all retail brand wall posts are of this length.

‘Question,’ Fill in the Blank Posts Get Fans Talking

Retail brand wall posts which ask a question have a fan comment rate double that of posts without a question. However, the “like” rate for question posts is slightly lower than that of posts without a question. In addition, posts that ask fans to fill in the blank receive nine times more comments than other posts, although their like rate is about half that of non-fill-in-the-blank posts. Buddy Media analysis indicates less than 1% of retail brands use this social networking tactic.

Fans Don’t Like Math

Study data shows the engagement rate of coupon posts including the keyword “dollars off” have an engagement rate twice as high as those that include “percent off.” Even small dollars off discounts of less than $10 have an engagement rate 17% higher than percent off promotions, showing fans do not want to calculate their coupon savings.

In addition, posts containing words only have an engagement rate 94% higher than average.

Overnight Posts Drive More Engagement

Facebook posts made by retail brands during the overnight hours of 8 PM to 7 AM drive 20% more user engagement, in terms of like and comment rates, than posts made between 8 AM and 7 PM, according to other study data. However, data from “Strategies for Effective Facebook Wall Posts” also indicates 89% of retail brand wall posts are made between 8 AM and 7 PM.

About the Data Buddy Media analyzed user engagement of Facebook wall posts from nearly 100 global retail brands between January 1 and June 30, 2011.

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