How Does the Facebook Performance Bonus Work? A Breakdown

Last Updated on September 1, 2023 by Jeremy

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In mid 2023, Meta announced a new bonus program, aptly named the Facebook Performance Bonus, that would reward creators with payments for engagement-related metrics on most all types of posts excluding Reels and Stories.

Unlike past bonus incentives, this one was quite exciting to many creators as it appeared that we would get paid for the content (and subsequent engagement) we were already generating day in, day out.

After getting accepted into this one for my local blog, I decided to look closely at my data to see if I could find any trends in how money is earned and ways to increase our revenue via the program.

Who Qualifies for the Facebook Performance Bonus?

Money from the Computer - Facebook Performance Bonus

Currently, Facebook is not sharing much about the Performance Bonus program, so most information you read out there should be considered speculation at best.

The most information provided is that up to 3,000 posts will qualify for a max income threshold of $30,000 and that payout values may vary by location. The upper threshold has varied for other performance programs in the past, but this one seems consistent to most creators in the USA- for now, at least.

Earnings are based on post-engagement metrics, including views, comments, reactions, and shares; however, they give no basis on what any respective category may earn individually.

We have personally only heard of a handful of creators invited to the program so far, and the ones we know all have high follower counts (most are 100K+ in the USA, but we have heard of some in the 10k+ range, too). As with past bonus programs, we expect this one to be extended to more creators over time, but it definitely seems like highly followed pages in the USA are the target at this time with a few exceptions here or there.

The earnings period is set at 30 days, and after the period ends, creators appear to be automatically renewed for another 30 days. However, like past programs, this one could end anytime with or without advanced notice.

How Much Can You Earn on the Facebook Performance Bonus?

Facebook Bonus Income

In past programs, like the Reels Bonus Program on Instagram, we tried to figure out how much you can earn from postings. This was easy if only because my personal posting of Reels was infrequent, and we could easily identify at what point income rates changed over time (namely, we always saw a substantial earnings drop after 20,000 views without fail- this was later verified by many other creators as well).

The Facebook Performance Bonus program is a bit harder to calculate if only because we do not know how views, comments, reactions, and shares are weighted. Are shares treated the same as comments? What about reactions? No one knows. But let's dive into the numbers from my first month anyway.

During my first bonus period, I earned a total of $562 based on the following performance for posts on my page:

  • 112 total posts
  • 617,401 total reach
  • 24,379 total reactions (likes, love, etc.)
  • 7,000 total comments
  • 2,778 total shares

I'll spare you from further breakout numbers here because, in all honesty, averages for any given category simply don't make a lot of sense here. $0.91 RPM for reach, $23 RPM on reactions, and so on are not nice, round numbers that we would hope to see if one single category drove earnings alone.

Considering Facebook is very clear that all engagement metrics are involved in this one, likely all with their own unique weightings, instead, it is best to look at my performance from an average standpoint overall and go from there.

On average, I earned approximately $5 per post ($562 / 112 posts) or approximately $18.73 per day ($562 / 30).

Perhaps the most interesting observation was that my daily rate did not change much throughout the 30 days despite a few viral posts. At the start, I was making about $15 per day, by the end I was averaging about $18.73 per day, and my best single day was just a little bit north of $20.

Considering I often post three to four times per day, the averages make a lot of sense.

But what doesn't make sense is that we also had a few viral posts during that time. One of which had 239,783 reach, 2,003 comments, and 1,239 shares. Posts like these did virtually nothing to move the needle on earnings.

You'd think a single post that contributed 39% of my total reach, 17% of reactions, 29% of comments, and 45% of shares would contribute between 17%-45% of my total earnings- but it seemingly did not. At most, I made about $5 more that day if I had to estimate based on how the income tab changed in real time.

So, do engagements matter or is something else going on that is not readily obvious?

To take a broader look at this one, I reached out to other creators who have been in the program, earning anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars in a single 30-day campaign period, to find out what they were seeing. Based on these conversations, we have a few trends emerge that we think could explain what is going on in the Facebook bonus program.

So, What is Really Going On?

After talking to other creators, we are seeing a few trends that could likely explain some of the quirks noted above.

First, there appears to be a wide income disparity between creators of comparable page sizes/engagement rates. When comparing pages that had similar metrics like ours, the biggest difference we saw that could potentially correlate to earnings was simply posting frequency. An account that posted 10 times a day vastly outearned accounts that only posted three times a day when other engagement metrics per post were similar.

Could it be as simple that more posts = more total reach/engagement = more money? It certainly seems that way.

Second, viral shares did not seem to move earnings as much as we expected for a campaign said to be driven by “engagement.”

As mentioned above, we never saw a substantial increase in earnings whenever a post went viral compared to our averages. Those we talked to also experienced the same. So, while I would've hoped for 10-20x in earnings for a post that performed 10-20x in engagement metrics, we barely tipped the needle $5-$10 at a time (if that).

As far as we can tell, the long-term engagement of content does not really generate too much revenue in this program for some unknown reason.

Third, as an extension of the last point, we theorize that a time element is baked into the metrics here. That is to say, accounts are credited on engagement only within a certain period after posting (think hours, not days or weeks).

This is one possible explanation for why posts with 10-20x average performance only earned about double what an average post would make. If a time element is involved, our theory is that earnings are based only on the first few hours after posting at most, and the rest (the bulk of the viral) is ignored or has vastly reduced earnings.

In a way, this could make a lot of sense. Posts that go viral on our end tend to pick up steam within a few hours after posting and last for several days thereafter. We can see an uptick in the (what appears to be) real-time earnings on our dashboard when a post begins to take off, only for it to fall back to what we have called our “daily average” after a short period despite the post continuing to grow in popularity.

If this is the case, then your page's historic algorithmic performance (i.e. how many people see/react to your posts on average) matters more than anything else. A page that instantly gets 1,000 likes/comments within the first few hours will likely vastly outperform one that only gets 10 likes/comments within the first few hours.

That said, if this is the case, then our first point about posting more frequently would likely also make sense. You may not be able to change how the algorithm initially shows your content too much (at least, in the short term), but you can indeed post more frequently with a similar end effect.

  • As a side note, if a phase-out on engagement like this exists within the program, I wouldn't be surprised if it is done to avoid paying out to posts that are designed to be engagement bait. Facebook probably recognizes that paying creators is something that can be gamed and as such put some safeguards in.

Fourth, a few creators with exceptionally high reach (hundreds of thousands or millions per post) noted that earnings dropped off for them at a certain reach threshold. However, it is hard to say whether a reach threshold is a trigger here or simply the time element we theorized above. 

In either case, creators are noting somewhat regularly that there is an earnings drop off at some undisclosed point on posts- be it time-based, reach-based, or perhaps both!

Overall, we really don't have any concrete answers here on how this Performance Bonus works, only a few theories that are, at this time at least, holding some water across a modest sampling of those in the program.

The most we can say is that payouts appear to be based on the first few hours of performance for any given post, which is likely dictated by your account's average engagement levels/organic reach within the algorithm. Virals may do a bit to help, but perhaps only if you get engagement quickly, which is easier said than done.

As such, at this time, our best recommendation to earn more is to simply post more quality content every day. Insofar as your average performance holds organically for every post, you may see an uptick in earnings simply by having a higher volume of posts going out overall.

Is It Worth It To Post for the Facebook Performance Bonus?

Although details about the Facebook Performance Bonus program are sparse, and most of the analysis in this post is anecdotal at best, we must admit that it is nice to see creators rewarded for things they already are doing day after day.

As opposed to the now-ended Reels performance bonus program, this one is a night and day difference as most creators can monetize their content without doing something new. I made very few adjustments to my posting style and frequency in my first month, and making $562 for that work is pretty incredible!

So, while I do believe I will start to increase my posting frequency to see if I can earn more in my next promotional period, I'll end this one with a slow clap to Meta for finally paying out to creators who help keep the network going. That said, many more regions, countries, and creators still need access to this program, and we hope to see it expanded more in the future!

Are you currently in the Facebook Performance Bonus program? What trends are you seeing from your own page? Comment below to share!

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10 thoughts on “How Does the Facebook Performance Bonus Work? A Breakdown”

  1. I earned like 2 bucks on 1 post about someone I know that was missing. It doesnt matter what I post I am not earning anything. My posts are original content, if there is a link i add it in the comments.
    nothing is happening!

  2. Trying to make sense of all this….

    I received an invitation to the performance Bonus Program at the end of July for a FB page with 1100 followers. I mostly post original photo images and reels (I know that reels are not included in this program) and also the occasional text-only post. My typical photo (and the occasional text-only) post gets anywhere from 10-30 likes, less than 10 comments, and 0 shares (unless I share the post to other relevant FB Groups, which I sometimes do).

    I posted somewhat regularly throughout the month of August, around once a day, sometimes less (again, mostly photo image posts) and earned $0 for the entire month of August. The program then reset for the month of September which we’re now in. Based on August performance & earnings, I all but gave up completely on this program.

    On Sept. 3 (3 days ago), I published a post containing 7 photo images. As I write this, that post has obtained 43 likes, 3 comments, and 1 share (which was shared by myself). This level of engagement is typical for my page if not a bit higher than average. This post has earned $1.14 – not bad at all considering the relatively small size of my page and level of engagement. Since then I have posted 2 other similar image posts, one with 19 likes, 2 comments, 0 shares, and the most recent with only 5 likes. Neither post has eared a single cent. Shouldn’t they have at least earned something, regardless of how small?

    Right now I’m trying to make sense of this and figure out how FB determines (or chooses) which posts get monetized and which ones don’t. I would think that if someone has been invited into the program then all of their posts should be monetized at least to some extent according to the level of engagement but this is clearly not the case.

    Also, your theory of posts being time-sensitive and capped as a result does not appear to apply in my case since my single post that earned the $1.14 generated the bulk of its engagement and earnings past the12 hour mark after posting and has still earned a few cents here and there up to three days after posting so far.

    Trying to make sense of all this and figure out if there’s anything I can do to make earnings more consistent across all my posts.

    • That is interesting, although I am honestly not sure how much can be extracted for data analysis with just $1 in earnings.

      Theoretically you should be earning some money from all posts, even if it is pennies like you described. But whether or not they have a floor engagement metric built in before income is applied is another option we didn’t even consider here. I honestly would not be surprised if they simply don’t pay out on lower performing posts, but that is just speculation, too.

      The best I can do is share my data, and if I average all of my “engagement” metrics to date (reactions, comments, and shares), I would estimate I am earning just under 2 cents per on total- ignoring any possible weighting that any one metric may have over another. That math would track closely to what you saw with your one post that is doing well and earned the $1.14. But that is about as far as I can say with the limited data we have access to and doesn’t explain why other posts weren’t earning anything.

      But I do know from other creators that have had insane viral posts days on that they have earned no extra income despite the engagement, too. A few creators I know have had posts that should have earned hundreds of dollars if performance was linear, but maybe earned at most a few dollars more than average. So something funky does seem to be going on in the time aspect.

      • Thanks for your reply.

        I still don’t think there is a time-cap with regards to earnings etc. At least not in my case: My post that was at $1.14 in earnings 3 day s ago is now at $1.21. Obviously not anything of significance earnings-wise and very minute but I think this is an indication that suggests that earnings will continue to accrue as long as there is engagement.

        While I definitely need more data etc from my page, I don’t think there is any kind of “floor engagement metric” like you have suggested. I have over 25 posts for the month of August, all with $0 earnings, yet some of these posts obtained higher engagement than my post from last week that has now earned $1.21. Also, that same post that has earned $1.21 started reflecting earnings trickling in (small as they may be) not long after posting, at a time where its engagement was still very low (in the single digits). So this would appear to be contrary to any sort of floor or threshold metric.

        I’ve since published some more posts on the page – all of them are showing $0 earnings. I’m looking for any kind of “pattern” or indicator but I simply cannot figure this out yet….

        • It is really hard to do data analysis on your case because if it is true that one post earned $1.14 but 25 others earned $0, there is no pattern to follow. Likewise, since Facebook doesn’t show how much each post makes on its own, as far as I can tell at least, it is possible that a subsequent post earned the extra $0.07 that you saw, and perhaps not the original one that caused it to jump to $1.

          Ultimately, I feel like you need more data points to figure out what kind of posts earn anything at all, and then see if that can be replicated. Otherwise we’re all just speculating.

          • Facebook doesn’t break down the earnings by post on desktop but it does on mobile. The post that I referenced that earned $1.14 last week is now up to $1.24. None of the other posts I have published on my page around that time (before or after) have earned a single cent. This is clearly outlined on mobile. Facebook mobile even breaks earnings down further according to the type of post (ie. video, image, text, or link).

            I’ve even posted an image post on some relevant Facebook groups, but not on my page (I did this as a test). This post also shows up in the performance bonus section on mobile as well. The post has received great engagement (both likes and comments), but still has earned a big fat $zero.

            Believe me when I say I’ve tried replicating the one post that has earned the $1.24 and nothing… I mean nothing works at all. There is clearly no kind of pattern and no rhyme nor reason as to what gets monetized and what doesn’t. I wish I could figure this out. None of it makes any sense.

          • That is wild. Admittedly, I cannot seem to find where the itemized numbers are on mobile. The only thing I have access to is the total Payout after a month has finalized. Can you share where you found this information? That may help me get more data to wrap my head around on how this works.

          • On mobile while logged into the page in question tap on the avatar for that page in the upper right hand corner of the screen. A link to the Page should then appear followed by a list of shortcuts followed by yet another list of shortcuts. Among the second list of shortcuts is a link to Professional Dashboard. Tap on that to see the Page metrics (reach, engagement, etc.). Scroll down further to view page monetization, payouts, etc. Tap on the monetization link to view the various ways the page is monetized (and the earnings for each), eg. stars, Ads on Reels, Bonuses, etc., etc.). Tap the bonuses link and you will see the earnings of each individual post and can further refine the view to sort earnings by type of post.

            I am beginning to think there is something broken on the backend of my Facebook page. I am receiving notifications of people liking and following my page (not just my posts), but the follower count is not being updated to reflect this. If this is true then it could possibly explain why only 1 of my posts in the last 6 weeks or so is showing any sort of earnings. Any ideas on how I would go about contacting Facebook to hopefully rectify this?

          • Performance Bonus earnings should update in near real-time as engagement occurs, just as they do for Ads on Reels.

            It does this for Ads on Reels and also did so on my one post that earned the $1.24.

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