In February, U.S. media publishers accounted for 1.5 billion total social actions (likes, comments, shares, retweets, dislikes), with 707 million actions from Instagram, 702 million from Facebook, 61 million from Twitter, and 14 million from YouTube (excluding views).
The media publishing industry represented 22 percent of all actions taken on content published by U.S. brands in February. Total actions for the media publishing industry saw a 9 percent decline compared to January, due to a 10 percent decrease on Facebook and an 8 percent increase on Instagram.
Of the top ten, BuzzFeed Food saw the highest growth in engagement at 50 percent, jumping to the number five spot in the ranking from the number ten spot in January, driven by a 57 percent growth on Facebook. BuzzFeed stole the top spot on Twitter from Bleacher Report this month, Tasty claimed the top spot on Facebook for the second consecutive month and National Geographic was once again the top media publisher on Instagram.
Key Engagement Drivers in February
BuzzFeed Food’s 50 percent engagement growth in February was driven by a 76 percent growth in Facebook video actions. Video accounted for 16 percent of BuzzFeed Food’s Facebook content but drove a whopping 87 percent the media publisher’s Facebook actions. BuzzFeed Food’s Mahic Chocolate Ball video recipe was the top post by a U.S. brand on social in February. Other tutorial videos which drove engagement were recipes for Chicken Wings, Spinach Dip Chicken Bombs and Brownies.
Billboard’s 32 percent growth in February was driven by a 59 percent increase on Instagram and 41 percent increase on Facebook, compared to January. During February, Billboard increased Instagram content by 61 percent with top posts featuring Taylor Swift’s numerous wins at the GRAMMYs.
BuzzFeed’s 16 percent growth in February can be attributed to its 66 percent increase in social actions on Twitter and 61 percent increase on Facebook. The media publisher’s top content across the two platforms were memes regarding current hot topics including Super Bowl 50, the Oscars and Facebook’s new reactions feature.
The fastest growing categories by social engagement month over month were Family (+16 percent), driven by mom.me; and Fashion & Style (+7 percent), driven by Vogue and ELLE Magazine. AskMen saw the highest growth of any media publisher in February at 597 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.