Dark social is an essential sharing factor — but it’s hidden.
Alexis Madrigal, a senior editor at The Atlantic, coined what might prove to be a very much-discussed term amongst social media naturals for some time to come:
Behold the dark social of online sharing:
We Can’t Measure Dark Social
We’re impressed with the sharing numbers from various social networks, including Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
But how much is socially shared beyond measure, beyond what we can see? How much is shared via email, instant messages and direct messages? How much is shared on darknets, BBS networks and untraceable forums?
According to Alexis Madrigal, senior editor at The Atlantic, quite a lot.
Here’s a tl;dr summary of dark social from The Atlantic:
“1. The sharing you see on sites like Facebook and Twitter is the tip of the ‘social’ iceberg. We are impressed by its scale because it’s easy to measure.
2. But most sharing is done via dark social means like email and IM that are difficult to measure.
3. According to new data on many media sites, 69% of social referrals came from dark social. 20% came from Facebook.
4. Facebook and Twitter do shift the paradigm from private sharing to open publishing. They structure, archive, and monetize your publications.”
When calculating reach numbers for your PR campaigns, are you taking dark social into account?
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