Understanding Stats in Social Media (3 min read)

Understanding Stats in Social Media (3 min read)

If you’ve paid any attention to marketing over the last 5 years it will have become crystal clear to you that the digital revolution is set to get bigger and better than ever. While digital marketing has enabled advertisers to reach their customers in places where they were never able to previously, it has also enabled advertisers to track their results more accurately – and on a much deeper level – than any traditional medium was ever capable of doing.


At Digital Marketing Adelaide we get a lot of questions about all things digital marketing. However, there’s one statement that seems to come up time and time again, and it goes something like “I’ve been trying to do my own marketing for a while, but for the life of me I can’t figure out what the HELL all these stats mean!”

Don’t worry, we know it’s confusing, we get it.

While the digital age has given us a lot of power in measuring results, at some point down the line the engineers running the show have gotten a little too trigger happy and have decided to bombard us with every stat of all time ever.

But luckily for you, you’ve found this blog post!

I’ll lay out all the stats you should be paying attention to, so next time you’re looking at your ads you’ll be able to cut through the clutter and start to understand the bigger picture that is your campaign.



Reach is relevant to every campaign you run online (and generally speaking, every marketing campaign full stop). Reach is the number of people who have seen your ads. Nothing more, nothing less. It doesn’t how many times one person sees your ads, they will still count as just ‘1’. That leads us onto the next stat..


Impressions go hand in hand with reach. Impressions are the number of times your ads have been seen. While this might sound the same as reach, it is distinctly different. For example, if one person saw your ad three times, the reach would be one, while the impressions would be three. Already with these two stats, you can start to piece together how your campaign is being viewed.


Frequency uses both reach and impressions to give you a helpful insight into how memorable (or how annoying!) your ad is becoming. Frequency measures the average number of times that each person has seen your ad. In the previous example under impressions, the frequency would be three, as there was only one person, and they’ve seen three of your ads.


While clicks and time spent looking at ads are important, still the trump card over both of those is the clickthrough rate – or CTR. The CTR can be used as a tool to more fairly compare two ads, regardless of the amount of money spent on the ads. The CTR is the percentage chance that someone viewing the ad decides to click. Because it is listed as a percentage figure, an ad that has had $500 spent on it and has reached 15,000 people can be, for the most part, compared to an ad that has only spent $50 and reached 1,000 people. If the ad that has spent $50 has a CTR rate that is double that of the larger ad, then that’s a pretty clear indicator that it might be time to adjust your budget.

However, there are still other variables coming into play with ads other than the dollars spent.

For example, chances are that the ad with $500 behind it has not only been seen by more people but has also been seen by those people more often. Because of this, who’s to say that the higher frequency in the $500 ad hasn’t contributed to the lower CTR of that ad? Maybe someone saw the ad the first time and decided to click, but then realised that they weren’t interested and so didn’t click again on subsequent views.



Still following me? If you are then you’re doing pretty well!

Either way, hopefully that clears up a few questions around the most important stats for your ads. With the knowledge in this blog you can start the long journey towards becoming a digital marketing guru!

And hey, if it all went straight over your head then there’s no need to stress – you know where to find us….after all, we are the experts!




Patrick Black is a marketer with a passion for learning how businesses can improve their advertising through science-backed principles. He enjoys writing about marketing much more than he likes to write about himself.