It turns out that new links published in social media have a similar life span to the Blue Wing Olive. Links receive half the clicks they'll ever get within hours.
An adult mayfly lives for 30 minutes to a day depending on species; have non-working mouths and a digestive track filled with air. They have one purpose..... but this is a marketing blog.
NYT recently highlighted some Bit.ly research on the window of time during which clicks occur for a new link posted in various places. Here's the chart....
For Twitter and Facebook half the clicks will happen in around 3 hours (left peaks) ; for YouTube it is 7 hours (middle bump).
At a Social Commerce Exchange meeting yesterday @DrewConrad presented some figures of what he has found at Zagg. The first five hour figures of their 12 Days of Christmas and iPad-a-Day promotions confirm this type of trend - 35-40% of the new fans came in the first week of the six weeks reported.
So, what do I take the implications of this to be...it is like fly fishing.
- We need to be constantly coming up with ways to produce interest - meetings and approval should be kept to an absolute minimum. If a fly isn't working, I change it - if a link doesn't produce in a day, put out a new one. If does work, put it someplace else.
- The attention span impacts the lifespan - YouTubers are likely more captivated by the surrounding content and not the flow itself. I need to make more of an impact in fast moving water so will use an attractor - the streaming nature of Twitter and Facebook suggest the same need for stimulating, high impact links. In calm water, where there is more dwell time I'll use a more natural fly - something similar might work in YouTube.
- Analysis time period of a link is daily; analysis of campaigns is longer, but done in the aggregate. Looking at one link over a long period of time doesn't make sense. Success at fishing is measured over the long term, not an individual cast.