Study: Facebook Engagement Jumps 62% For Web Publishers

Facebook engagement for publishers surged in the second quarter from a year earlier as the social network showed its power to spread viral content.

Publishers saw a 62% gain to 7.41 billion engagements with their Facebook posts during the three-month period, according to social-media tracking firm NewsWhip. The company counts user actions such as likes, shares and comments as engagements.

Fox News, NBC, British Broadcasting Corp. and CNN – news broadcasters that NewsWhip counts as publishers when they post articles and videos to Facebook – were the top content providers by Facebook engagement.

Fox News and NBC both racked up about 170 million engagements, followed by BBC at 148 million and CNN at 139 million during the second quarter.

The top print publisher was U.K. tabloid The Daily Mail. Its engagements rose 10% to 98.6 million during the period from the prior three months.



The New York Times saw a 48% gain in engagements to 92.5 million, putting the newspaper ahead of The Washington Post and USA Today, which stills publish print editions.

The strength of traditional broadcasters and publishers reflected their capacity to generate hundreds of posts.

Digital native publishers that focus on viral content managed to generate engagement with fewer posts.

LADbible, the U.K.-based social publisher, had the most engagements among digital native companies with 172 million reactions to its viral content. Its top post was titled “Little Lad Shaves Siblings' Hair With Razor” – a self-explanatory videothat racked up 2.22 million engagements.

Native videos were the best way to drive user engagement, with 14 of the top 15 posts using the format on Facebook.

First Media’s Blossom, the creator of craft and cooking videos aimed at young women, dominated the ranking of most engaging posts during the second quarter. Six of its videos were in the top 15 ranking.

Its video titled “13 easy-peasy peeling hacks!” was the No. 1 post on Facebook with 6.67 million engagements. The video racked up 4.8 million shares, 2.7 million reactions and 139,000 comments by July 26, outside of NewsWhip’s study period.

NBC’s “Americas’s Got Talent” competition show had the No. 2 post with 6.58 million engagements for a video showing the audition of Kodi Lee, a blind and autistic musician.

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