Which Pubs Perform the Best on Social Media?

Shareablee_co_smallAs the media landscape evolves, we’re learning that publishers have much more to concentrate on than just putting out good editorial content and having a nice website. Today’s media organizations must put strong focus on having a powerful social media presence, as Sharablee, a social engagement analysis company, has found.

Last week, Shareablee compiled its first list ranking which digital and print publishing arms have the best handle on social media. The monthly list is intended to be helpful to advertisers looking to get the very best when it comes to choosing where to allocate their dollars and publisher audience engagement.

The Shareablee Audience Engagement Ranking of Publishers is calculated based on various publishers’ progress in growing readerships on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Here is a more in-depth explanation of what defines “engagement,” according to a press release from Sharablee:

  • Unique engaged audience – the number of people who engage with a publisher’s content in the report month
  • Quality of engagement – the portion of actions (post-level likes, shares, favorites, retweets and comments) attributable to a specified social media platform
  • Actions per post – the average number of actions that a publisher’s post has received in a given period, which is a key indicator of the resonance of each individual communication”

And … drumroll, please. The top performing publishers for June 2014 are:NGLogo

1. National Geographic
2. The Huffington Post
3. Bleacher Report
4. BuzzFeed
5. J-14
6. People.com
7. M
8. Harper’s Bazaar
9. Country Living
10. Seventeen

The Sharablee report indicates that 66 percent of all “actions,” which include “likes, shares, favorites, retweets and comments,” occur on Facebook. Nearly four percent happen on Twitter and almost thirty percent are seen on Instagram.

A few notes of interest: 87 percent of social media actions for National Geographic, a highly visual publication, come from Instagram. Meanwhile, BuzzFeed sees 89 percent of audience engagement through its Facebook presence, 10 percent on Twitter and less than two percent on Instagram. These figures show the importance of knowing your product and leveraging the right social media platforms for your content and audience.

From looking over this list, you may also notice the fairly balanced ratio of digital publishers to traditional media outlets. HuffPo, Bleacher Report, BuzzFeed and People.com all appear in the top six of the list, meaning they know how to engage people online. Still, it’s impressive that an old, highbrow print pub like Harper’s Bazaar does so well with social. I will say, I was surprised that The Atlantic was missing from the list, as well as ABC News and Upworthy — since they seem to do so well on social, at least in my Facebook feed.

What surprises you about Sharablee’s list? How would you define audience engagement on the social web?

You can learn more about Sharablee rankings here.