Reach vs. Impressions: What’s More Important to Track?

What is the difference between reach and impression? Which one should you be paying attention to? Does this question keep you disturbing? If yes, then you have landed on the right page. Here in this blog, we have discussed the difference between the two in detail. Let's begin.

Reach vs Impressions: Various social media terms are misinterpreted and some are considered the same. Reach and Impressions, do have their definitions. Regarding social media engagement, it all covers the areas of strategy and metrics to increase the efforts. These two terms have their importance and thus the metric.

It is critical to know the difference between reach vs impressions. The reason is your business working towards better brand awareness. Doing everything possible to grow and influence your audience on top social media platforms.

What is the difference between Reach & Impression?

What's the Difference between Reach vs Impressions

Reach is defined as the total number of people who visualize your content. Impressions are the number of times your content gets displayed, whether it is clicked or not. It would be great if the number of people would see the content you posted.

The content is delivered to someone’s feed, so the viewer does not have to engage with the post to count it as an impression. A single piece of content can have multiple impressions.

Understand Deeply About Reach and Impressions

If there are similarities between Reach and Impressions, there is still a difference regarding engagement. To explain simply – You have 100 followers on Twitter, if they see your tweet, then your reach will be 100 users and 100 impressions.

Now if you post 2 tweets to your same 100 followers, your reach will be 100 users only as they all have seen. You will have 200 impressions because your 100 followers have seen both the tweets. Therefore, the number of impressions is larger than your follower count.

While tracking the success of a social media campaign, you will get a clear idea about reach and impressions. Keep in mind, reach is considered as the number of people who have seen your content. Impressions are the multiple numbers of times your content was displayed to be watched by the user.

Understand Deeply About Reach and Impressions:

It is important to learn about related engagement strategies to improve your reach and impressions. There are different kinds of reach and impressions on each social network platform. They all are standard wise and relate to post/categories. It is necessary to know when to improve and how.

Facebook Reach vs Impressions

Facebook Reach vs Impressions


On Facebook, Reach can be Calculated Through 3 Different Categories

  • Organic – People who saw your content for free in the Newsfeed.
  • Viral – People who saw your post or page which was published by others. It includes like, sharing and comments.
  • Paid – People who saw your paid matter, like Facebook Ad.

Different types of strategies can be followed depending on the type of reach you want. Certain factors help in increasing your reach.

Impressions can be Calculated Through Three Different Categories

  • Organic – Number of times the content was displayed for free, in your News Feed.
  • Viral – Number of times the content was displayed in a story by a friend. This includes like, share and comments.
  • Paid – Your paid content was displayed the number of times – e.g. Facebook Ad.

Reach vs Impressions – Facebook Ad

Though the same categories exist, reach and impressions are not separate. For Facebook Ads, two more additional types of impressions are considered – Served and viewed!

Facebook Ads reach vs impression


  • Served Impressions include ads no one sees because the person left the page before it could complete. Therefore, it leaves a big gap between the number of served ads and the number seen.
  • Viewed impressions are counted when the ad enters the screen of a desktop or any mobile app. It will not be counted if it does not enter the screen.

Twitter Reach vs Impressions

Twitter does not measure reach but tracks impressions. Impressions are calculated as anytime a Twitter user sees your Tweet. The number of impressions seen inside the Twitter app counts the number of times your Tweets show in a user’s feed. No data is provided by Twitter on reach.

Reach, Impressions, and your Marketing Strategy

You need to be clear with your marketing strategy, for reach and impressions. Following are the three options to be considered – 

1. Who is your Target Audience?

Who is your Target Audience?

For brands or businesses, it is important to reach as many consumers as possible. This will also mean increased awareness. Many send messages which are generally ignored and thus lose effect. So it is better to design your messages and content while keeping your target audience in mind.

Secondly, review your other shared contents, which are retweeted and liked. This will result in finding your target audience and also increase your reach.

2. Monitor and Analyse the Engagement Metrics

The rise in your impressions, show about your ability to get the content in front of your target audience. This happens when your content comes up more frequently into user’s feeds.

3. Actively Engaged Followers, Influencers, or Your Target Audience

To increase the impressions, it is important to grow the number of active fans in your community.

Published and shared content plays an important role out here. When your community shares your posts into their networks, your impressions and reach will surely increase.

If you do not see the required impressions you hoped for, then evaluate your shared content. Is it optimized or not for the social network platform you are using?

You need to regularly monitor your work and analyze the metrics. This will improve your targets for the needed audience. Use the best social media monitoring tools to tag messages for specific slots on your social team.


It is not impossible to understand and distinguish between the two metrics but will help you in achieving your goal – social media engagement.

Engagement provides you awareness. Reach and Impressions guide people to take action. So, if you want to increase your engagement, then consider reach and impressions too into it. Both are not worthy without each other.

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