BuzzFeed’s Latest Traffic trick: The ‘Social URL’

BuzzFeed’s Latest Traffic trick: The ‘Social URL’

This story was originally published by

Too many people think, ‘If I write a good piece of content on the right subject, it’ll get shared.’ Sharing’s not just for the lucky.

SHARE
THIS



BuzzFeed may already be king when it comes to getting people to share its posts, but that’s not stopping it from continually trying new things. Now, BuzzFeed has even tapped the humble URL to work harder.

The social publisher has discovered that writing original, made-for-sharing URLs can act like a rocket booster for a post.

BuzzFeed stumbled on what it calls the “social URL” by accident. The URL was once created automatically using the first few words of the headline. Several months ago, the publisher created a field in the CMS to allow editorial staffers to tweak the URL in case a word in the URL was cut off, or if they wanted to alter the URL in case the headline changed drastically. It wasn’t long before edit staff started to notice they could play around with the URL, to good traffic effect.

“It has a bit of an Easter egg quality,” said Jack Shepherd, BuzzFeed’s editorial director. “It’s not something people immediately notice. It’s more fun for the reader, it’s more fun for the writer, and it can often make the post more shareable.”

There are no guidelines at BuzzFeed for writing social URLs, but there are a few common uses:

The clever-wordplay social URL
Actual headline: 28 Snapchats From Harry Potter
Social URL: http://www.buzzfeed.com/jarrylee/snapechat

The emotional-reaction social URL
Actual headline: These Positive Doodles Are Utterly Delightful
Social URL: http://www.buzzfeed.com/maggyvaneijk/your-emotions-are-valid

Shepherd said BuzzFeed isn’t making social URLs mandatory for its edit staff or measuring their impact, at least not yet. It’s a game publishers are wise to employ today, given people are increasingly coming to the news through their social feeds. (At BuzzFeed, social sharing drives 75 percent of its traffic.) And at a time when publishers need to use every trick at their disposal, the social URL is another element that can help sell a story.

One side benefit of the socially driven URL is that publishers can tell fairly quickly if it’s taking off on Facebook or Twitter, whereas it can take days to see the impact of a story in search, said David Spitz, president and COO of RebelMouse.

Click here for the full story.

Latest News

Rimmel London & The Cybersmile Foundation Take On Beauty Cyberbullying
  • Campaigns

Rimmel London & The Cybersmile Foundation Take On Beauty Cyberbullying

Rimmel London has partnered up with The CyberSmile Foundation to take a stand against Beauty Cyberbullying. Launched on Monday via a global campaign #IWillNotBeDeleted, fronted by Rita Ora and Cara Delevigne with a cast of other individuals who have been affected by this issue. In 2017, Rimmel London undertook a global research study to understand […]

Shining The Light On Classic Out Of Home For Impact And Engagement
  • Advertising
  • Media

Shining The Light On Classic Out Of Home For Impact And Engagement

Jeep Australia and Lumo Energy are among an increasing number of brands creating impact and driving greater audience engagement through the use of special builds and innovative lighting on classic out of home billboards. The two builds, developed and executed by oOh! include strategically placed lighting which appears to increase in luminance as the night gets darker, to capture the attention […]

Media i Awards 2018 Winners Announced
  • Media

Media i Awards 2018 Winners Announced

The Media i Awards, recognising media sales excellence, were announced last night at a sold-out awards ceremony in Sydney. Voted by peers, the Media i Awards acknowledge the important role media sales representatives play in the continual pursuit of media advertising excellence. Introduced in 2011, the Media i Awards are the only awards dedicated to […]