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BizReport : Social Marketing : October 05, 2010

Social channels not primary way to share content

Think of online sharing and social channels immediately spring to mind. However, new research has shown that the preferred method of sharing content with others isn't Facebook or any other social media - it's email.

by Helen Leggatt

chadwick_martin_bailey_logo.gifClose to half (49%) of consumers share content online at least once a week. A recent study (.pdf) from Chadwick Martin Bailey and iModerate Research Technologies found that while almost half use Facebook to share, overall the vast majority (86%) use good old email.

Unsurprisingly, the preferred method of sharing changes dependent on generation. Email is most popular among those aged 25 and over, peaking at 97% for those ages 65+. Facebook, on the other hand, is preferred by younger Internet users (76%), but not so popular among those aged 35-44 (52%) and 65+ (24%).

Whether content is shared or not depends on a variety of triggers. The most common reason to share is because the sender finds the content interesting or entertaining (72%) and not because the sender believes the recipient will find it so (58%).

The most-shared type of content is news, photos and videos of family members and friends (80%) followed by funny videos (63%). However, coupons and discounts are shared by over half (54%).

The least likely content to be shared is video or blog posts relating to entertainment and celebrity gossip.

"Social media has opened up new opportunities for marketers to amplify their brand, build loyalty and connect with consumers," said Jeff McKenna, senior consultant at Chadwick Martin Bailey.

"Creating relevant, sharable content needs to be part of the overall marketing strategy, as it is an important vehicle for word of mouth advertising."

Tags: content sharing, email, social networks

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