The Difference Between Impression and Reach

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Social media strategy is executed through policies, procedures, metrics, tactics and tools you use to listen, measure, respond and integrate online promotion. It enables you to reach your targeted audience more effectively and engage them in real time.

The three most common terms you’re likely to come across in regards to this are (post) reach, impression and engagement. There is lots of confusion around the three words because they could mean different things on different platforms. She offered some basic definitions on each of the key metrics:

Reach: the number of people who see your content.
Impressions: the number of times your content is displayed.
Engagement: the number of interactions people have with your content (i.e.: likes, comments, shares, retweets, etc.)

These terms are relevant in regards to making sure you are addressing the chosen audience because they enable you to track how many people actually sees your content. Since you already know that you want your content to be displayed in the News Feed of as many people as possible, for most of us, reach and impressions are often mixed up. Let’s see what is what.

Reach

Reach gives you the exact number of people that saw your content.
Reach might be less than impressions, since one person can account for multiple impressions (seeing the same content two or more times). If the same person sees the same content two different times, the reach would remain the same.

Reach accounts to the number of unique people who received impressions of a page post.

Impressions

This refers to the number of times a post from your page is displayed, regardless of the number of post clicks. It is also important to note that people may see multiple impressions of the same post: someone might see an update in the News Feed once, and then again, when a friend shares it. If the same person sees the same content twice, that would make two impressions.

The impressions give you a clear understanding of how many times your content has been showed in the News Feed of people on social networks, meaning that measuring your impressions will help you track if the content you post has the ability to be viewed by your targeted audience the most time.

To sum up, impressions refers to the total number of times someone viewed the content, and reach to the number of single users that saw it.

The main purpose of social media marketing is to raise brand awareness, which means reaching as many people as possible and growing your audience. Social media metrics are of vital importance for developing your business, because if you’re not tracking social media metrics for your business or event, you cannot be sure whether you’re making the impact you wanted.

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