The key to extensive sharing on social media is long-form editorial content with “very long” headlines, according to a new comprehensive marketing study published this week by BuzzSumo and Backlinko.
In an era when attention spans appear to be dwindling, it may be a surprise to hear that content with a greater word count actually resonates more with audiences on Facebook and other social platforms. The study of 900 million blogs and articles found that it is not even close either.
Content with between 1,000 and 2,000 words is the sweet spot for maximising social shares, and long-form output generates 56% more of those all-important interactions than shorter content with less than 1,000 words.
The same pattern is true for headlines. Shorter, catchier titles are often viewed as ideal, but the research showed that “very long” headlines with between 14 and 17 words are best for increasing social shares. In contrast, articles with one to five-word headlines performed the worst.
BuzzSumo also found that B2C content is more likely to be shared across the web than B2B materials, though they did note that this is probably due to the more approachable and less niche topics that are covered.
Finally, the study also looked into the idea of there being a “best day” to publish, but the results are conclusive in that there is no such thing. Every day of the week saw pretty much the same returns in terms of social shares, though Sunday and Monday were just a shade higher than the rest.