What We Learned from Analyzing 6.2 Billion Facebook Reactions - Social Media Explorer
What We Learned from Analyzing 6.2 Billion Facebook Reactions
What We Learned from Analyzing 6.2 Billion Facebook Reactions

Facebook Reactions were introduced in mid-March. Initially the response could be described as tepid, but new research from Unmetric shows that Reactions are gaining ground. As part of this study, Unmetric analyzed 6.2 billion Facebook Reactions from over 32,000 brand pages between April 25th and July 3rd.

29% Increase In Facebook Reactions On Brand Pages

Our first analysis simply looked to see whether Facebook Reactions on brand posts were gaining any traction. From week one (April 25 to May 2) to week ten(June 27 to July 3), Facebook Reactions grew from an average of 62 Reactions to 80 Reactions per post, a growth of 29%.


93.5% Of All Facebook Reactions On Brand Pages Are Likes

This increase in Facebook Reactions means that the percentage of Likes has fallen. Back at the end of March, Unmetric reported that 93% of Facebook Reactions are Likes. This was based on a smaller dataset, whereas the current percentage of 93.5% is based on data from over 32,000 brand pages across two months.

The trend is going down as well, so while 93.5% was the average percentage throughout the entire time period analyzed, the final week of the study had Likes making up 92.6% of all Reactions. This suggests that people are becoming more comfortable to make a bigger expression of emotion than simply ‘Liking’ the content.


81% Increase In Sad Reactions

In terms of the number of Reactions per post, we have seen an increase across the board. The biggest winner has been the Sad Reaction where the usage has increased by 81% during the eleven-week time period analyzed. The second biggest increase was for Angry Reactions which saw a 41% increase while Hahas saw a 33% increase. Love Reactions, already so popular, increased from an average of 30 per post to 35 per post.


47% Of All Facebook Reactions Are Love

Amongst the five available Reactions (other than the default Like), the Love Reaction remains the most popular method of reacting to a post. Over the course of the time period analyzed, 47% of all Reactions are Love. The least used Reaction is Angry, which is to be expected, as brands generally don’t want to post controversial content to their audience. Brands that do attract a higher percentage of Angry Reactions on their posts should pay close attention as to why this is and how it compares to their peers.


When it comes to the amount of Facebook Reactions, the average Facebook brand post receives 36 Love Reactions, 15 Hahas, 10 Wows, 9 Sads and 7 Angry Reactions.


Reactions Are Changing

Even in the eleven weeks that we analyzed the data for, there are some subtle shifts in the popularity of certain Reactions when looked at over time. The biggest shift was away from Fans using the Love Reaction. This usage has dropped from 49% of all Reactions to 43%. In its place, the Sad Reaction has seen an increase in usage, from 9% to 13%. The other Reactions have seen negligible increases in usage.



It’s not yet clear whether the increasing use of Reactions is a result of people becoming more comfortable with them or whether brands are improving the type of emotion they wish to elicit. What’s your personal experience of Reactions been? Have you started using them more or are you noticing people using them more on your Facebook newsfeed?

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About the Author

Peter Claridge
Peter is the Manager, Global Marketing for Unmetric. He is an avid writer and blogger, gets excited by social media metrics and dreams that one day he will play for Manchester United. You can follow him on Twitter @PeterClaridge or connect on LinkedIn.

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