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What Goes Viral: Learnings From 100,000 Popular Content Pieces

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Which types of Web content get shared most on social media? Do format, length, and domain authority correlate to more shares?

To find out, Growista used the BuzzSumo platform to analyze 50,000 content pieces that received 500+ social shares in 2016 and 50,000 content pieces that received 500+ social shares in 2017. The content came from individuals or brands in eight categories: marketing, dating, fitness, pets, beauty, health, technology, and travel.

The number of webpages that received either 500-2,500 social shares or over 10,000 shares increased from 2016 to 2017, the analysis found.

However, the number of webpages in the 2,500-10,000 share range decreased significantly from 2016 to 2017.

Text-based general articles received the most shares, on average, in both 2016 and 2017.

The average number of shares of videos increased significantly in 2017.

Readers were more likely to share content 3,000+ words long in 2017 than in 2016, the analysis found.

Content from sites with a higher domain authority tends to receive more social shares, on average.

About the research: The report was based on data from an analysis of 50,000 content pieces which received 500+ social shares in 2016 and 50,000 content pieces which received 500+ social shares in 2017.

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Ayaz Nanji is an independent digital strategist and a co-founder of ICW Content, a marketing agency specializing in content creation for brands and businesses. He is also a research writer for MarketingProfs. He has worked for Google/YouTube, the Travel Channel, AOL, and the New York Times.

LinkedIn: Ayaz Nanji

Twitter: @ayaznanji

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