The Science of Social Media

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How to engineer contagious ideas.

This presentation is the result of over 3 years of research into online social media including blogging, Twitter, Facebook, and Foursquare as well as historic and offline social media like urban legends, proverbs, and homeric poems.

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The Science of Social Media

  1. The Science of Social Media @DanZarrella
  2. Free
  3. 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% Without "free" With "free"
  4. Metric to Improve
  5. Metric to Improve Potential Change
  6. Metric to Improve Potential Change Discard Implement
  7. Metric to Improve Potential Change Discard Implement Potential Change Discard Implement
  8. Metric to Improve Potential Change Discard Implement Potential Change Potential Change Discard Implement Discard Implement
  9. Metric to Improve Potential Change Discard Implement Potential Change Potential Change Discard Implement Discard Implement
  10. Focus: Timing
  11. Hour of Day vs ReTweets 0 1 2 3 4 5 6
  12. Day of the Week vs ReTweets 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 3
  13. Day of the Week vs Email Opens 0% 1% 2% 3% 4% 5% 6% 7% 8% 9% 10% 0.40% 0.42% 0.44% 0.46% 0.48% 0.50% 0.52% 0.54% Unsubs Clicks
  14. Day of Week vs Facebook Like Rate 0.12% 0.13% 0.14% 0.15% 0.16% 0.17% 0.18%
  15. Time of Day vs Facebook Like Rate 0.00% 0.02% 0.04% 0.06% 0.08% 0.10% 0.12% 0.14% 0.16% 0.18% 0.20%
  16. Takeaway: Experiment with contra-competitive timing.
  17. Focus: Conversation
  18. @Reply Percentage Vs Followers 0.00% 2.00% 4.00% 6.00% 8.00% 10.00% 12.00% 14.00% 16.00% 18.00% Over 1k Under 1k
  19. @Reply Percentage Vs Followers 0.00% 2.00% 4.00% 6.00% 8.00% 10.00% 12.00% 14.00% 16.00% Over 1M Under 1M
  20. Non-@ Link Percentage vs Followers 0 0.05 0.1 0.15 0.2 0.25 0.3 0.35 0.4 0.45 0.5 Over 1k Under 1k
  21. Links vs Followers 0 500 1000 1500 2000 2500 3000 3500 4000 1 4 7 10 13 16 19 22 25 28 31 34 37 40 43 46 49 52 55 58 61 64 67 70 73 76 79 82 85 88 91 94 97
  22. Non-@ Link Percentage vs ReTweets 0% 2% 4% 6% 8% 10% 12% 14% 16% 18% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100%
  23. Reply Percentage vs ReTweets 0% 2% 4% 6% 8% 10% 12% 14% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100%
  24. Repin Correlation To Likes and Comments 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9 Likes Comments
  25. Takeaway: Content is king, not conversation.
  26. Focus: Social CTAs
  27. Effect of SCTAs on Facebook Likes 0.09% 0.10% 0.11% 0.12% 0.13% Without "Like" With "Like"
  28. Effect of SCTAs on Facebook Comments 0.000% 0.002% 0.004% 0.006% 0.008% 0.010% 0.012% 0.014% 0.016% 0.018% Without "Comment" With "Comment"
  29. Effect of SCTAs on Facebook Shares 0.000% 0.005% 0.010% 0.015% 0.020% Without "Share" With "Share"
  30. Effect of Questions on Facebook Comments 0.00% 0.01% 0.02% 0.03% With Questions Without Questions
  31. Effect of “Share” on Blog Metrics -4.0% -2.0% 0.0% 2.0% 4.0% 6.0% Comments Links Views
  32. Effect of “Link” on Blog Metrics -2.0% -1.0% 0.0% 1.0% 2.0% Comments Links Views
  33. Effect of “Comment” on Blog Metrics -3.0% -2.0% -1.0% 0.0% 1.0% 2.0% Comments Links Views
  34. The Word “Like” 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9 LpF 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 CpF The Word “Comment”
  35. Effect of SCTAs on ReTweets 12% 39% 51% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% Neither Please RT Please ReTweet
  36. Takeaway: Ask for the actions you want.
  37. Focus: Visual Content
  38. 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% Without Media With Media Effect of Media on ReTweets
  39. Facebook Post Types vs Likes -80 -60 -40 -20 0 20 40 60 80 100 Jan-10 Mar-10 May-10 Jul-10 Sep-10 Nov-10 Jan-11 Mar-11 May-11 Jul-11 Sep-11 Nov-11 Jan-12 Mar-12 May-12 Jul-12 Sep-12 Nov-12 Jan-13 Mar-13 May-13 Jul-13 Sep-13 Nov-13 Jan-14 Mar-14 May-14 Jul-14 Photos Links Status Videos
  40. Tumbler Photo Post Percentage 83%
  41. Tumbler Post Types vs Notes -120% -100% -80% -60% -40% -20% 0% 20%
  42. Takeaway: Visual, visual, visual, visual, visual.
  43. Number of Tags vs Likes and Comments 0 0.02 0.04 0.06 0.08 0.1 0.12 0.14 0.16 0.18 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 3 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30
  44. 0 0.05 0.1 0.15 0.2 0.25 Without #NoFilter With #NoFilter Number of Tags vs Likes and Comments
  45. #NoFilter Fakers 28%
  46. Effect of Filters on Likes-per-Follower 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9 1 Normal Willow Valencia Sierra Walden Hudson Mayfair Amaro Rise Sutro Inkwell Unknown Toaster Brannan Hefe X-Pro II Lo-fi Nashville Earlybird 1977 Poprocket Kelvin Apollo Gotham
  47. 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 With "face" Without "face" Effect of Faces on Likes-per-Follower
  48. Saturation vs Likes and Comments 0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 1.2 0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11
  49. Luminance vs Likes and Comments 0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 1.2 1.4 1.6 1.8 0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.1 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
  50. #Selfies Everything
  51. Focus: Relevance
  52. One-to-One Sharing Motivations 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50%
  53. One-to-Many Sharing Motivations 0% 10% 20%
  54. Zombies Marketing Me
  55. Takeaway: Use combined relevance.
  56. Focus: Text Content
  57. Sentiment vs Twitter CTR 0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 -6 -5 -4 -3 -2 -1 0 1 2 3 4 5 6
  58. Facebook Sharing By Linguistic Content -0.2 0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1
  59. Takeaway: Don’t be a Debbie Downer.
  60. Link Placement vs CTR
  61. Tweet Length vs CTR 0.00% 2.00% 4.00% 6.00% 8.00% 10.00% 12.00% 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 110 120 130 140
  62. Readability vs Likes and Comments 0.00% 0.02% 0.04% 0.06% 0.08% 0.10% 0.12% 0.14% 0.16% 0.18% 0.20% 0.00% 0.00% 0.00% 0.01% 0.01% 0.01% 0.01% 0.01% 0.02% 0.02% 0.02% 1 3 5 7 9 11 13 15 17 19 Comment Rate Like Rate
  63. Part-of-Speech vs Likes -0.04 -0.03 -0.02 -0.01 0 0.01 0.02 0.03 Adverb Adjective Noun Verb
  64. Takeaway: Write simply and plainly.
  65. Thank You!

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