Email, IM, SocNets Top Online Sharing Channels

November 18, 2009

This article is included in these additional categories:

Analytics, Automated & MarTech | Email | Paid Search | Personalization | Social Media

Despite the social media revolution,? traditional forms of networking such as email and instant messaging are still the most popular mediums for sharing content across the internet, according to a recent study by Social Twist, which was based on an analysis of information exchanges using its Tell-a-Friend content-sharing widget.

The report, “SocialTwist’s Social Media Sharing Trends 2009“? provides details on the most preferred medium of social media sharing, the popular and emerging channels, and social media trends for 2010.

Most Preferred Medium

The report revealed that nearly 60% of overall sharing happens via email.? However, fewer people like to manually type in email addresses. Just about 10% of email shares involve people typing email addresses.


Instant Messaging, with 25% of total sharing, was the next preferred medium. It is followed by social networks, with 14%.

Additional findings from the report:

  • Since it opened itself to all age groups in September 2006, Facebook (79% of social network shares) has displaced MySpace (15%) as the most popular social networking site when it comes to sharing content online.


  • LinkedIn, as a networking site, ranks the lowest when it comes to social media sharing.
  • Twitter is perceived to be a news broadcast platform and not a “sharing” platform. It enjoys only 5% of “shared information” traffic among popular social platforms. However,?sharing on Twitter has risen by a factor of 23 in the past year.
  • Bookmarks are rapidly losing their significance in the social media space. Only 2% of shares happen over Bookmarking sites. Digg (44% of bookmarking shares) is the most popular bookmarking site followed by Google Bookmarks and Delicious with 11% and 12% percent respectively.
  • Yahoo Mail (at 44% of total email sharing) is still the most preferred email service, followed by MSN (25%). Gmail lags behind these two (19%). Yahoo Mail is also the top single channel for sharing overall:


  • Google’s services – such as? Google Bookmarking, Google Talk, Gmail, and Blogger – have failed to replicate the brand’s search-engine success online in terms of information sharing.
  • Yahoo Messenger is the most popular IM service among all others when it comes to sharing – it enjoys 49% of the total number of shares. MSN Messenger (34%) is second, and Google is third (15%).
  • WordPress, with 45% of blog shares, and Blogger with 42% are the most popular blog platforms for social media content sharing. Typepad, according to the survey, is never used.

About the research: The report is based on an analysis of social media sharing behavior for 10 million recent referral messages using the Tell-a-Friend widget. SocialTwist has a user base of 50,000+ websites and blogs that use Tell-a-Friend.

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