10 Important Social Media Studies

Website BuilderPutting together a social media strategy plan can be a daunting task.

Most people understand getting setup with a Facebook and Twitter account, but then you have to figure out what to actually post. And you could post something fun once in a while, but keeping up with a random schedule and random content ideas isn’t a good strategy.

You know that.

You might even still be on the question of whether you should have a social media strategy at all at this point.

If that’s where you’re at or if you’re looking for more information to help you with your current social media strategy then you’re in the right place.

Here are 10 important social media studies that show the power of social media along with some insight into what the studies mean for you and your brand.

1. Adding Pictures To Your Tweets Increases Referral Traffic By 108%

There are many different forms of engagement on social media. Likes, shares, retweets, comments and more. But one type of engagement that is perhaps most valuable is getting someone to click through to your website.

This is often done by sharing a blog post from your company blog on social media. But don’t just share the link and the title.

Neil Patel of QuickSprout found that when he shared his posts on Twitter along with a picture that he got 108% more referral traffic from Twitter to his website and blog.

That’s obviously something you want for your social media strategy.


  • Share your blog posts on social media
  • Use pictures when you share your blog posts

2. Liking 100 Photos On Instagram Leads To 6.1 New Followers

Here is another find by Neil Patel when he was experimenting with growing an Instagram following. He would like photos on Instagram of people that he wasn’t following. He likely was searching for photos using popular hashtags and liking the ones he truly liked.

He found that for every 100 photos he liked that he would get 21.7 likes on his photos and 6.1 new followers.

This is a great strategy for getting followers on Instagram. And it’s a good strategy on all social media channels.

You have to give some love in order to receive love.


  • Like other content on social media
  • Comment on other content on social media

3. Auto-Posting To Facebook Decreases Likes And Comments By 70%

Auto-posting to social media can be a great way to keep your social media profiles active without needing to login and post something manually.

But it turns out that auto-posting might not be a good thing. Perhaps your followers can tell when you’re just auto-posting. Or maybe social networks like Facebook want to pressure people into posting manually so they get better engagement or maybe a better experience.

If you want Facebook engagement it looks like you’ll need to focus on manual posting or at least a hybrid model of auto-posting and manual posting. If you don’t you’ll see a decrease in engagement by 70%.


  • Manually post some of your Facebook updates
  • Cut down on the number of social sites you use so you can manually post on your focused sites

4. Links Placed Just Before The Halfway Point Of Tweets Get More Clicks

HubSpot found out this interesting fact. I’ve always tended to put the title of something first and the link to the content at the end of the tweet. I’ve also tried putting the link first and the title second.

But I’ve never tried putting the link just before the middle of the content. You would need to adjust the content a bit, but I can see how this would work.

I think it would look like this:

Get more clicks on Twitter: Link Also find more information about how to increase your social media engagement by reading those studies.


  • Try putting your social links in different locations
  • Share a mixture of your own content and other people’s content on Twitter

5. Most Retweets Occur At 5:00 PM Eastern Time

According to KISSmetrics, most retweets occur at 5:00 PM Eastern Time. It turns out that 50% of the US population is on Eastern Time. I didn’t know that. Another 30% are in Central Time. So really most of us are on Eastern Time and or Central Time if you live in the US.

I actually used to publish more in the morning, but have seen studies like this one and now I post more in the afternoon and evenings. I guess maybe everyone is busy in the AM.


  • Post in the afternoon and evening
  • Post more frequently in the afternoon and evening

6. Emotions Are Contagious

This one is kind of scary. Facebook tested this theory and it turned out to have interesting results. It seems that if you seen mostly negative posts on your Facebook feed that you’ll likely experience negative emotions or be more likely to post something negative.

The good news is that it works for positive emotions as well.


  • Follow positive people and brands
  • Share positive posts to make your followers more positive

7. Brands Experience Success With 5+ Posts Per Day On Pinterest

Buffer looked at previous studies and research of their own to determine that the number of times we should post on Pinterest is 5 times. To some, that may seem like a lot, but when you think of all the content people see on Pinterest it doesn’t seem like that much.

In general, the more often you can post the better on social media including Pinterest. But you don’t want to post just anything. You’ll have to put in effort to ensure what you’re sharing will be interesting to your followers.


  • Share more content on Pinterest
  • Always look for the best content to share

8. List Words (10 Things, 5 Ways, etc.) Are The Most Popular Words In Highly-Shared Content

This finding comes from CoSchedule. People love lists and it’s been that way for a while likely even before the Internet. Lists are easy to scan and easy to consume while gaining valuable insight quickly.

Lists can be for entertainment, but also for education.


  • Create list blog posts to share on social media
  • Create list content right on social media

9. Women Prefer Small Groups, Men Prefer Large Clubs

This study was interesting, but the more I thought about it the more it made sense.
The study looked at how profile images and images on social media show the type of relationships women and men value. Men tended to post images with large groups while women often posted images of themselves with one other person.


  • Identify your target audience on social media – men or women
  • Cater to their need to be part of a small group or large group with the content you share

10. 14% Of People Have Risked Their Own Safety To Get A Like-Worthy Photo

That is crazy!

But I guess that’s the culture we live in now. People are after that feedback and engagement. They miss what’s happening in real life looking at their phone trying to take the perfect picture.

I’ve been guilty of it.

I remember a concert a few years ago when the artist said he didn’t mind if people took photos or videos. But he encouraged people to put their phones away so they could enjoy the experience live and use their old fashioned memory to store the special experience.


  • Don’t go crazy trying to take the best pictures for your social accounts
  • Schedule time to take photos to share, but also put your phone away to enjoy experiences – you can write about them on social media later

Final Thought

Hopefully these studies have helped you think about your social media strategy. Even as I was finding these studies I learned a few things. That last one really hits home. I’ve been guilty of it in the past, but I try to enjoy the moments in person instead of trying to preserve the moment on camera.

I hope these studies and lessons help you with your social strategy. I think there is some good, actionable insight.

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