Most Engaging Facebook Pages and Posts of 2012... So Far

September 24, 2012

With school back in session at most colleges and universities, we figured it would be a good time to take a look at the most engaging pages and posts on Facebook again. We've analyzed all the posts from the 600+ pages in our directory from January 1 to August 31 of this year.

A New Engagement Score Formula

Before we dig into the results, we want to tell you about a new wrinkle in our formula. We're now incorporating the number of shares a posts get into our Engagement Score. As we do with comments, we've given shares twice the weighting of likes. Our rationale is that sharing a post (and thereby giving your own friends an opportunity to see the post in their News Feed) is a more powerful form of engagement than simply liking a post. There's no hard-and-fast science behind these weightings and we definitely welcome any thoughts you may have for improving the weighting.

The 10 Most Engaging Posts of 2012 (January-August)

We have shared the ten posts (among more than 180,000 posts we analyzed) that had the highest engagement score. This is a very small sampling, but it hopefully gives you a glimpse into the type of content that can really spark your audience to like, comment, and share. One point that is worth highlighting is that nine of the 10 posts included a photo.

 SchoolPost Text 
1University of North Alabama
Enagement Score: 2,173
Type: Photo
The University of North Alabama this morning lost a beloved member is its community, celebrated actor and entertainer George Lindsey. Lindsey passed away at 12:05 a.m. at age 83.Link
2Regis University
Enagement Score: 777
Type: Photo
Share this prayer for Colorado written by President John P. Fitzgibbons, S.J.Link
3Miami University
Enagement Score: 412
Type: Photo
Gorgeous photo of a snow covered MacCracken Hall taken by Miami University junior, Mike Zatt. Browse more of his great photography here: http://raulzatt.deviantart.com/Link
4St. Bonaventure University
Enagement Score: 385
Type: Photo
Bonnies flag spotted in the background of The Today Show at the London Olympics! Like this pic if you're a fan of the Bonnies and/or Al Roker in a pink jacket. Thanks to Cassie Orlowski (@cmorlo) for the pic via Twitter! cc: St. Bonaventure Alumni, St. Bonaventure AthleticsLink
5Temple University
Enagement Score: 253
Type: Photo
The BIG EAST welcomes Temple with a huge display in Times Square!Link
6Bellarmine University
Enagement Score: 244
Type: Photo
Bellarmine Knights get a shout-out on ESPN broadcast, along with some other great Kentucky teams.Link
7Buena Vista University
Enagement Score: 227
Type: Photo
Check out this old aerial photo of campus - can you guess what year this was taken? Leave your guess in a comment below, and we'll put the correct ones in a drawing for a $10 iTunes gift card.Link
8Marist College
Enagement Score: 224
Type: Status
Marist. One College. One Community. One Family.Link
9Tarleton State University
Enagement Score: 221
Type: Photo
Two of our Tarleton employees decided to bake cookies in their cars! A good reminder of how hot temps get inside vehicles. Be safe out there this summer!Link
10Tuskegee University
Enagement Score: 217
Type: Photo
Tuskegee is my heart. Nothing is as dear to me as Tuskegee- Amelia Boynton Robinson, oldest Tuskegee alumnaLink

Please keep in mind that these scores are related to the size of the fan base for the Facebook Page. There are definitely posts that received more likes, comments, and shares, but they were on Facebook Pages that had larger fan bases, and therefore had lower engagement scores.

Best to Post on the Weekend

Consistent with our previous research, the best days to post seem to be Saturday and Sunday. Interestingly, posts on Sunday were shared more than twice as often as posts on any other day of the week.

Day of WeekEngagement ScoreShares / 1,000 fans
Sunday3.786
6,940 posts
0.26
Monday2.609
30,165 posts
0.10
Tuesday2.620
30,639 posts
0.10
Wednesday2.731
30,656 posts
0.12
Thursday2.735
31,158 posts
0.11
Friday3.009
30,288 posts
0.11
Saturday3.463
8,676 posts
0.10

Engagement Trending Upward

One trend that surprised us a bit is that engagement has pretty much been on a constant upward trajectory this year. We don't have a clear sense why this may be happening. Are colleges getting shrewder with their Facebook posts? Has Facebook been showing these posts more frequently in News Feeds? Are schools spending more money to promote their posts through Facebook ads? We don't know.

MonthEngagement Score
January1.822
26,827 posts
February2.150
24,572 posts
March2.738
20,499 posts
April2.170
23,423 posts
May2.972
19,310 posts
June3.044
17,889 posts
July3.485
15,250 posts
August4.903
20,752 posts

The Most Engaging College & University Facebook Pages of 2012 (January-August)

Here are the top 10 most engaging college and university Facebook pages so far for 2012 by size category. We've broken them up into size categories so the comparison is more of an apples-to-apples one.

XX Large (75,000+ Facebook fans)

RankSchoolEngagement Score
1The University of Kansas
(Lawrence, KS)
6.557
198 posts
2Indiana University
(Bloomington, IN)
5.506
145 posts
3Oregon State University
(Corvallis, OR)
5.379
106 posts
4Liberty University
(Lynchburg, VA)
5.136
191 posts
5Texas A&M University
(College Station, TX)
4.807
191 posts
6University of Wisconsin-Madison
(Madison, WI)
4.300
230 posts
7The University of Texas at Austin
(Austin, TX)
3.889
135 posts
8UC Berkeley
(Berkeley, CA)
3.825
250 posts
9West Virginia University
(Morgantown, WV)
3.749
329 posts
10University of Georgia
(Athens, GA)
3.427
244 posts

X Large (20,000-74,999 Facebook fans)

RankSchoolEngagement Score
1University of North Alabama
(Florence, AL)
9.705
291 posts
2Utah State University
(Logan, UT)
7.850
70 posts
3North Carolina State University
(Raleigh, NC)
6.547
334 posts
4Marquette University
(Milwaukee, WI)
6.460
418 posts
5University of Nebraska-Lincoln
(Lincoln, NE)
5.892
146 posts
6Montana State University
(Bozeman, MT)
5.804
152 posts
7University of Mississippi ~ Ole Miss
(Oxford, MS)
5.372
266 posts
8Xavier University
(Cincinnati, OH)
5.370
103 posts
9Grand Valley State University
(Allendale, MI)
5.226
122 posts
10University of Nevada, Reno
(Reno, NV)
5.160
88 posts

Large (7,500-19,999 Facebook fans)

RankSchoolEngagement Score
1Siena College
(Loudonville, NY)
20.523
50 posts
2Kenyon College
(Gambier, OH)
12.067
119 posts
3Prairie View A&M University
(Prairie View, TX)
10.702
176 posts
4Marist College
(Poughkeepsie, NY)
9.536
151 posts
5Wellesley College
(Wellesley, MA)
9.515
189 posts
6Berry College
(Mount Berry, GA)
9.501
102 posts
7Denison University
(Granville, OH)
8.917
69 posts
8University of Dayton
(Dayton, OH)
8.908
82 posts
9University of Portland
(Portland, OR)
8.639
325 posts
10Smith College
(Northampton, MA)
8.338
434 posts

Medium (2,500-7,499 Facebook fans)

RankSchoolEngagement Score
1Buena Vista University
(Storm Lake, IA)
32.098
45 posts
2Regis University
(Denver, CO)
25.082
80 posts
3Tuskegee University
(Tuskegee, AL)
15.236
109 posts
4The Citadel Alumni Association
(Charleston, SC)
15.212
56 posts
5Shaw University
(Raleigh, NC)
14.931
76 posts
6Martin Luther College
(New Ulm, MN)
14.873
51 posts
7Allegheny College
(Meadville, PA)
13.540
64 posts
8Bethel University
(Saint Paul, MN)
12.678
34 posts
9California Lutheran University
(Thousand Oaks, CA)
11.039
47 posts
10Covenant College
(Lookout Mountain, GA)
10.669
86 posts

Small (Fewer than 2,500 Facebook fans)

RankSchoolEngagement Score
1Saint Joseph's College
(Rensselaer, IN)
20.940
42 posts
2West Liberty University Gary E. West College of Business
(West Liberty, WV)
12.424
38 posts
3Lasell College
(Newton, MA)
12.044
58 posts
4Hesston College
(Hesston, KS)
11.963
43 posts
5Capitol College
(Laurel, MD)
10.281
59 posts
6Husson University Admissions
(Bangor, ME)
9.822
79 posts
7Simon Graduate School of Business
(Rochester, NY)
9.386
102 posts
8VCU School of Business
(Richmond, VA)
9.265
124 posts
9Grace University
(Omaha, NE)
9.104
50 posts
10Bellevue University
(Bellevue, NE)
8.418
163 posts

Research Note: While we have made efforts to include a wide range of schools, we do admit that our directory is not an exhaustive list of college and university Facebook Pages. If your college or university is not in our directory and you'd like it to be included, simply contact us and provide a link to your official Facebook page. We're happy to add you to the directory and include your school in future studies.

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