The data in this post has been updated, as of November 16, 2010. Due to data limitations from the Facebook API, the original data pull had not been complete. We re-pulled the data for the 4-week period October 17-November 13, 2010 and re-ran our analysis.
As a company that focuses on the intersection of higher education and social networking, specifically Facebook, Varsity Outreach has been tracking the performance of college Facebook Pages for over a year now. You can visit our Directory of College Facebook Pages to see trends in growth of fans (or likes, depending on which term you prefer). Recently, we've begun analyzing the posts that are shared on these college Facebook Pages. A couple months ago, we shared some analysis we did on 601 U.S. college Facebook Pages, trying to uncover some general trends around engagement.
Now, we're releasing some additional findings on college Facebook Pages. Unless otherwise specified, the data shared is for October 17, 2010, to November 13, 2010.
Most Active College Facebook Pages
First, we wanted to see which schools were doing their best to keep their Facebook Pages fresh with a constant flow of content. Below are the top 20 college Facebook Pages by the number of posts over this 4-week period. We only counted posts from the page itself, not from fans. All of these schools averaged more than two posts per day on their Facebook Page, with the top school, South Carolina, averaging a whopping 14.5 posts per day.
|1||Official University of South Carolina Page|
Average Engagement Score: 0.915
Average Engagement Score: 0.796
Average Engagement Score: 0.550
|4||Jackson State University|
Average Engagement Score: 0.915
|5||Taylor University Trojans|
Average Engagement Score: 1.173
|6||Northwest Missouri State University|
Average Engagement Score: 0.650
(Baton Rouge, LA)
Average Engagement Score: 0.854
(New Wilmington, PA)
Average Engagement Score: 0.461
|9||McNeese State University|
(Lake Charles, LA)
Average Engagement Score: 0.585
|10||Eastern Illinois University|
Average Engagement Score: 0.255
(University Park, PA)
Average Engagement Score: 0.766
|12||The University of Arizona|
Average Engagement Score: 1.181
(Saint Catharines, ON)
Average Engagement Score: 0.591
(Green Bay, WI)
Average Engagement Score: 1.232
Average Engagement Score: 0.503
|16||University of Michigan-Flint|
Average Engagement Score: 0.941
|17||Northeastern Illinois University|
Average Engagement Score: 2.616
|18||Florida A&M University|
Average Engagement Score: 1.768
|19||University of Miami|
(Coral Gables, FL)
Average Engagement Score: 1.995
|20||Missouri State University|
Average Engagement Score: 0.368
Most Engaging College Facebook Pages
We also wanted to see which schools had the most engagement over this month-and-a-half long period. We used the same formula to track engagement that we used in our previous analysis:
We have only included college Facebook Pages with at least 5 posts during this period. We have also broken them out into four categories based on the size of their fan base so that the comparisons were more apples-to-apples.
Very Large (25,000+ Facebook fans)
|1||Texas A&M University|
(College Station, TX)
|2||The University of Kansas|
(Fort Lauderdale, FL)
|5||Mississippi State University|
|6||Oregon State University|
|7||Oklahoma State University|
|9||University of Oregon|
|10||University of Wisconsin-Madison|
Large (7,500-24,999 Facebook fans)
|2||New Mexico State University|
(Las Cruces, NM)
|3||North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University|
|5||Tarleton State University|
|8||California State University, Northridge|
|9||North Carolina State University|
Medium (2,500-7,499 Facebook fans)
|1||SUNY New Paltz|
(New Paltz, NY)
|2||California Lutheran University|
(Thousand Oaks, CA)
|3||Bryn Mawr College|
(Bryn Mawr, PA)
|5||Dixie State College|
(Saint George, UT)
|6||Pacific Lutheran University|
|7||University of St. Thomas|
(Saint Paul, MN)
|8||Iowa State University|
|10||Winston-Salem State University|
Small (<2,500 Facebook fans)
|2||University of Minnesota Rochester|
|4||VCU School of Business|
|5||The Citadel Alumni Association|
|6||College of the Rockies|
|7||Elon University Admissions|
|8||New Mexico Tech|
|10||Paul Smith's College Admissions|
(Paul Smiths, NY)
When Colleges Post on Facebook
This last chart highlights when colleges post on Facebook by day of the week. As you'd expect, colleges don't do a lot of posting on the weekends. However, posts on the weekends seem to be the most engaging (especially on Saturday, which may have to do with college football, given the period we analyzed).
Post and Engagement by Day of the Week
We'll continue to share periodic updates regarding the data we collect on colleges and Facebook. We'd love to hear any insights or interesting anecdotes that you have to share in the comments.
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