In January, U.S. media publishers accounted for 1.6 billion total social actions (likes, comments, shares, retweets, dislikes), with 782 million from Facebook, 766 million actions from Instagram, 51 million from Twitter, and 14 million from YouTube (excluding views).
The media publishing industry represented 23 percent of all actions taken on content published by U.S. brands in January. Total actions for the media publishing industry grew 11 percent compared to December 2015, due to a 17 percent increase on Facebook, a 17 percent increase on Twitter and a 5 percent increase on Instagram.
Of the top ten, BuzzFeed’s Tasty saw the highest growth in engagement at 102 percent, scoring the number two spot in the ranking, driven by growth rates of 102 percent on Facebook, 51 percent on Instagram, and 6 percent on Twitter. Tasty also claimed the top spot on Facebook for the first time. Bleacher Report continued its reign as the top media publisher on Twitter and National Geographic was the top media publisher on Instagram.
Key Engagement Drivers in January
Video accounted for 99 percent of Tasty’s total social actions, with social video actions increasing 101 percent in January compared to November, despite an 11 percent decrease in video content. The majority of Tasty’s social engagement was captured on Facebook, topped by tutorial videos showing users how to make Pizza Puff Pastry Twists, Ice Cream Bites and Cheese-Stuffed Pizza Pretzels. The Pizza Puff Pastry Twist tutorial was also the top post on social by any brand, media property or celebrity in January, with over 4 million likes, shares and comments, and 133 million views.
Complex’s 43 percent growth in January was driven by a 52 percent increase on Facebook and 33 percent increase on Instagram, compared to December. During January, Complex increased content on Facebook and Instagram by 10 percent and 13 percent, respectively. Eight of Complex’s top ten posts were Facebook videos, ranging from dancing teachers, to snow divers, to attacking turtles.
BuzzFeed’s 36 percent growth in January can be attributed to its 103% increase in Facebook video posts, which drove a 454 percent growth in Facebook actions. The media publisher’s top ten posts were all videos, led by hilarious videos relating human situations to the antics of puppies, koalas and raccoons. The dancing teacher video that led Complex’s top posts also scored among BuzzFeed’s top five posts.
Fastest Growing Categories and Publishers
The three fastest growing categories by social engagement month over month were Food (+49 percent), driven by Tasty; Women’s Interest (+27 percent), driven by LittleThings.com; and Auto (+22 percent), driven by Motor Trend Magazine and Automobile Magazine, the latter of which saw the highest growth of any media publisher in January at 137 percent.
Tania Yuki is founder and CEO of Shareablee, a leading provider of social content analytics for business. She has spent most of her career in digital marketing, measurement and analytics, and was recently honored with a Great Mind Award from the Advertising Research Foundation and featured in Fast Company and Forbes as one of 12 women driving digital in New York.