Every so often I don’t know if I should publish something on the Shareaholic blog or if I should publish it over here. On this one, it’s very much written from my personal opinion and point of view so I thought I’d throw it over here.

We’re starting to publish more data we get on how people share content and how that sharing leads to website traffic. Our two latest reports:

February Referral Traffic Report – Pinterest is killing it and actually outpaced Twitter for referral traffic in February.

Next, we published our top sharing platforms for February in Marketing Charts. The data shows that people actually share more to Facebook than they do other sites, including Pinterest.

So… wtf, right? How come Pinterest ranks so high for referral traffic but not for shares? The difference, as pointed out to me by my boss Jay, is discovery vs. sharing. Some social networks are more popular for sharing, while others are more popular for discovery.

Think about the number of people who upload video to YouTube vs the (much larger) number of people who watch YouTube videos. It’s unclear what the first number is (YouTube says 60 hours of video are uploaded every minute) but they say around 4 billion videos are viewed each day. I think Pinterest is along the same vein. It appears to me that while many people are pinning, they are discovering content and clicking through on it even more. It is also worth noting that re-pins can’t be included in our statistics as we count original shares from our plugin and browser extension.

Furthermore, what could this mean for marketers who use Pinterest? It seems like a smaller percentage of people are driving the original Pins (sharing) while many others are discovering, re-pinning, and clicking through on those images. Do I hear “Pinterest influencers” in our future? Roll your eyes (I did as I typed that) but yes. I think so.

Does the discovery vs. sharing thing make sense to you? Am I crazy? Let me know in the comments.

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