As the importance of social media in the news gathering process continues to grow, Twitter rules the social media roost with most journalists, according to a new survey from Muck Rack.

While online newspapers and magazines were still rated as the first place a majority of journalists (59 percent) go for news, Twitter came in second at 22 percent, far ahead of Facebook (two percent) or the four percent whose main source is “other social media platforms/feeds.”

Print newspapers or news magazines were cited by just six percent, radio by four percent and broadcast/cable news by three percent.

“The State of Journalism 2019” polled 720 journalists between mid May and mid June to find out how they use social media, how media relationships are changing and what the best ways are to reach them with a pitch.

When journalists were asked which social networks were highly valuable to them, the dominance of Twitter becomes even more apparent. Twitter was selected by 83 percent of respondents as a top choice, and Facebook came in a distant second with 40 percent. The only other platforms to top 20 percent were LinkedIn (26 percent) and Instagram (20 percent).

Muck Rack

A sizeable portion of respondents (38 percent) also said they expect to spend more time on Twitter this year. The only other platform to come close to that number was Instagram, which 36 percent of respondents said they would use more.

Most respondents also said that a company’s social media output was an important part of their reporting. More than a quarter (26 percent) said that they “always” consult a company’s social media, while 35 percent said that they “usually” do so and 29 percent said that they “sometimes” do.

Muck Rack’s report also looked at what PR professionals can do to make their pitches stand out in the new journalistic landscape. One-to-one, personalized email remains the preferred method for delivering pitches, with 93 percent of respondents saying they like to receive pitches that way.

Mass emails were judged to have less impact, with only 19 percent of respondents approving of them. And while Twitter got high marks as a source, just 13 percent said they liked it as a medium for distributing pitches. That’s still better than the nine percent that liked “other social sources” which included Facebook and LinkedIn.

When it comes to picking the best time to send a journalist a pitch, the hours from 9 to 11 a.m. were deemed the best by 40 percent of respondents. Early morning (6 to 9 a.m.) was the choice of 25 percent and 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. was judged best by 18 percent.

To download a copy of the report, click here.