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How long does a Status Update stay in the Facebook News Feed?

, Co-Founder, PageLever

October 7, 2011



Across 20 Status Updates, the average post lifetime in the Facebook newsfeed was 22 hours, 51 minutes. [Tweet This]

How long does a fan page status update stay in the Facebook newsfeed?

That’s super useful to know, because that’s exactly how often you should post to your Facebook page.

At any one time you only want to have one status update visible in your fans’ newsfeeds–otherwise some of them will get annoyed and unfan your page. Similarly, if a post drops out of the newsfeed, and you don’t immediately post a new status update, you’re missing out on opportunities to reach fans.

So I measured twenty status updates from 5 pages that each had more than two million fans. These status updates were all posted after Facebook rolled out the Ticker.

This is an incredibly primitive survey since it’s only twenty status updates. I hesitated before releasing this data, but we won’t have more accurate data for a bit, so it’s better to at least release what we know.

Here is what I found:

status updates lifetime benchmarks1 How long does a Status Update stay in the Facebook News Feed?

  Again, this survey is wildly imprecise because of the low sample size. Do not assume this data is representative of all Facebook posts.

Results:

  1. Across 20 Status Updates, the average post lifetime in the Facebook newsfeed was 22 hours, 51 minutes. [Tweet This]
    This is longer than I intuitively expected. In my personal experience, the post-Ticker version of EdgeRank drops posts a lot faster than the pre-Ticker version. This fast time-decay could simply be because I log into Facebook thirty times a day (you know, for work). I know EdgeRank changes the time-decay factor based on how frequently you log into Facebook.
  2. Post lifetimes are wildly erratic–ranging from 10 hours to 50 hours!
  3. I very clear found that “likes” are a better measure of post lifetime than per-post-impressions, simply because Facebook updates per-post-impressions irregularly.
Methodology:
PageLever measures the life of a status update in the newsfeed using three different metrics. These graphs show cumulative numbers, so when the graph flattens is when the post has dropped out of newsfeeds:

sample post graph engagement impressions How long does a Status Update stay in the Facebook News Feed?

I simply pulled up 20 status updates from 5 pages that had 2M+ fans, and then eyeballed the amount of time until likes/comments/impressions stopped. I used only pages that had 2M+ fans to make sure each status update generated enough “likes” to create a solid graph over time.
For those who are interested, here is the raw data in Excel format.

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