Americans increasingly get their information from social media. According to a recent 2015 Pew study, 63% of users reported getting their news from Twitter and Facebook. Regardless of whether something important is happening in the world or our favorite celebrity couple is breaking up, we’re hearing about it first on social media, long before we turn to search engines like Google to give us more detail.
Consider this past month. In the early morning hours of December 10, the popular podcast “Serial” announced its second season. People have been dying (pun intended) for this news for months and rushed to Twitter. The hashtag #Serial quickly became popular as dedicated fans tweeted the news of the new season and within the hour, it was the #1 trending topic on Twitter.
But that’s not where the story ends for Serial. Although the #Serial hashtag was trending across the US by 7am EST, search traffic was just beginning to rise for the term “Serial” on Google.