The effectiveness of links shared on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube

September 8, 2011
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(This article was first published on Revolutions, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)

The bitly blog has posted a really interesting analysis of the effectiveness of links shared via the social-media services Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Here, effectiveness is measured by the "half-life" of a link: the amount of time it takes for that link to generate half the clicks it will ever attract. They summarize their results in this ggplot2 density chart created with the R statistics software:

Halflife_density
As you can see, links posted on Facebook and Twitter (and also links shared directly, via email or IM) are generally "fast burners" - they generate most of their clicks in the first 3 hours or so. By contrast, links shared on YouTube. Follow the link below for more details about the analysis, or check out the summary featured in the NYT's Bits Blog.

bitly blog: You just shared a link. How long will people pay attention?

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