The best time to share things on Pinterest is Saturday morning, according to data from Bitly, the URL shortening service.
Hilary Mason, Bitly’s chief scientist, revealed the nugget during a talk at Mashable Connect in Orlando, Fla. Bitly keeps track of clicks on the links created by its users, and where they’re coming from, aggregating the data to create actionable information.
In addition to the Pinterest factoid, Mason said a story’s half-life — the time it takes to receive half the clicks it will ever get — lasts 2.8 hours on Twitter, 3.1 on Facebook, 7 hours on YouTube and “longer” onStumbleUpon and Tumblr.
Bitly also looks at usage of devices. Bitly says it’s seeing 12% of clicks coming from mobile devices. While all device use rises and falls based on wake/sleep patterns, most phones, tablets and computers follow similar patterns of use each day. One notable exception: Game consoles, which jump on Thursdays, something Mason attributed to college students using them to mainly watch YouTube videos.
Typically, content follows a “burst and decay” pattern, with a huge spike of clicks early in its life cycle that drops off rapidly, then slowly. The pattern can repeat as the content spreads to other networks or gets shared by influencers.
As an example, Mason cited the recent video ad campaign by PopChips that had actor Ashton Kutcher in brown face, imitating an Indian man. The videos received several spikes of interest, including after a few prominent people suggested the ad was racist and again when the offensive ad was taken down.
Bitly’s data also reveals which social networks command the most attention online. Based on preliminary research into what people share and what people click on, Bitly ranked the most attention-getting social networks:
For content creators, Mason had some pointed advice for better engaging an audience: create content with a community in mind. “Creating things that people want to tie into their identity is the best way to make them spread,” she said.
Do you agree with Bitly’s conclusion that Pinterest is best used Saturday morning, or its ranked list of social networks? Have your say in the comments.