Facebook’s PTAT: What is it?

Marketers are known for their expansive list of acronyms and dropping trendy buzzwords (think ROI, PPC, KPI, growth hacker, thought leader – feel free to add yours to the list!). In the world of Facebook metrics, “People Talking About This” or PTAT is a measure that is very dear to a marketer’s heart – and with good reason.

What is PTAT?

Over a 7 day period, whenever a page visitor does one of the below things, a story is created about your page and your PTAT is increased.  These stories can be any of the following:

  • like a page
  • post on the page wall
  • like a post
  • comment on a post
  • share a post
  • answer a question
  • RSVP to a page’s event
  • mention the page in a post
  • tag the page in a photo
  • check in at a place
  • share a check-in deal
  • like a check-in deal
  • write a recommendation
  • claim an offer

Because the metric tracks unique stories over a 7 day period, it is important to engage fans consistently to keep your number up.  For example, if a fan likes your page and leaves a comment on the same day, it will only add one point to your PTAT – but another point is added if that fan comes back and creates a new story after 7 days – so being consistent is key.

The number itself is very public – anyone visiting your page can see the PTAT on the left side of the page under the number of likes.  Important to remember, that while likes are reported in real-time, PTAT is usually a couple of days behind, so don’t freak out if the numbers look a little confusing!

Where do I start?

Start by looking at your PTAT number and those of your competitors online.  If yours is lower, take a look at what the competition is doing differently and use that knowledge to generate some creative campaigns! (see Turtle Wax’s recent Wax On Shirt Off campaign for a great example!). If you are consistent and look to your PTAT numbers regularly, you will see results.

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