The Rise of Social Sharing February 13, 2012 by Sirpa Aggarwal social login, social sharing Social sharing is emerging as a powerful social media tool. The term is often used loosely to mean any content sharing on social media, when in fact it has a very specific meaning. So what exactly does the term mean? Social sharing refers to sharing of content and activity from a site or app back to a social network, such as Twitter or Facebook. These two social networking sites currently have the lion’s share of all social sharing, Facebook with 54%, and Twitter with 34%, according to Q3 2011 data by Janrain. Although the other major social networking sites have much smaller shares, they all have their own niche markets, most notably among them LinkedIn that is popular among B2B sites. USA Network’s ‘Psych’ on the ‘Character Chatter’ site, powered by Arktan SocialStreams, illustrates social sharing in action. Fans on the site engage and interact with each other by posting comments on the site. When they opt to share their comments on Facebook and Twitter, it becomes social sharing. Comments shared on Facebook and Twitter drive traffic back to ‘Psych’ on the ‘Character Chatter’ site. This cycle of virality repeats itself every time, when new fans enter the site, engage with the content and fans on the site, and then share their comments back on Facebook and Twitter. Sites that provide engaging, interactive content, and make sharing seamless and effortless for the users are the ones benefiting the most from social sharing. When users sign in to sites using their social login, they share their social profile information with the sites. In addition, when they engage in social sharing on the sites, they provide information about the type of content that is of interest to them. Companies can then use this information to tailor marketing based on each individual user’s tastes and preferences. Social sharing is starting to gain momentum, and becoming more widespread, but considering its potential reach and benefits, it’s still only in its infancy. It will be interesting to see, how it continues to be adopted in different industries, and what will be its impact going forward.