Using Social Media Search to Create New Content

I’m noticing a new type of content appearing on websites and in my Twitter feed lately. Maybe I’m just behind on upcoming trends but it’s something I haven’t noticed before and I can’t help but find it hilarious and deeply interesting all at the same time.

Buzzfeed Stats

Buzzfeed Stats

People are using social media search features to aggregate tweets, instagrams, posts, and comments that are either all similar or based around a specific topic. It’s incredibly useful for creating content relevant to a specific topic or event. I know search features have been used before but I haven’t seen them used like this. The only accurate way to describe this is with an example. In a post from Buzzfeed titled “Black Friday in 41 Absolutely Horrifying Photos“, writer Scott Lamb created a collection of images depicting Black Friday madness. The collection was posted hours after Black Friday took place and received 266,375 total view to date. By the 25th of November (2 days after Black Friday) the post had already received more than 200,000 hits. What makes this so amazing is that anyone could have created a similar post. More than 75% of the post is created using images gathered from Twitter and Instagram. A simple #BlackFriday search on both social networks will return thousands of images and tweets. After a few hours of mining the results, you could have a post very similar to Mr. Lamb’s. By creating content aggregated from other social media users, you can create content based around an event hours after it occurs. Because relevance is such a factor in social media, the ability to create content so quickly is very useful.

A more “creative” post which also comes from Buzzfeed is titled “The 34 Types of Drunk Uncles.” Author Matt Stopera collected humorous tweets and pictures from Twitter. I think this post is ridiculously simplistic and genius at the same time. Imagine this. You’re sitting at your office and you have a deadline to create a viral post by Thanksgiving Day. You think about what’s funny about Thanksgiving. Everyone will be home with family. Some families have drunk uncles. Drunk uncles are funny! You search Twitter for “Drunk Uncle” and you instantly have you’re content. I can’t view the stats on this particular post but I CAN see it has 561 Facebook shares and has been tweeted 131 times.

I expect to see much more social media content aggregation in the future. It almost acts as reverse social media content creation. Instead of asking users to upload pictures, user’s are already finding the pictures which are relevant. With a simple creative idea, user’s can search and find whatever type of media they are looking for.

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