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Social media is radically challenging the landscape of TV.
From programs to adverts, the very nature of it is being forced to change (and at a rapid pace) by the increased use of social media.
A new, socially active and discerning audience wants more interaction, more power to influence and new ways to engage whilst watching the show(s) they love.
Producers ignoring these viewers do so at their peril, as an army of younger consumers are switching to YouTube as their preferred way to get their visual entertainment.
The old skool top-down approach to programming and scheduling is being turned on its head as older TV execs are being held to account by a new type of audience.
Here are just some of the ways social is forcing TV to change forever.
The immediate and public nature of Twitter has helped the social network establish itself as the talking shop of choice for live TV viewers.
From time-to-time Facebook will try to claim that its useless hashtags are just as effective for real-time conversations, or new second-screen apps will crop up before their inevitable decline forces a forlorn rebrand, but as yet Twitter has yet to face any genuine challengers in this area.
However a new study claims that Tumblr is in fact Twitter’s main rival when it comes to TV engagement, with conversations among viewers spiking in the hours after a programme has aired and lasting for days afterwards.
This is partly due to the prevalence of DVRs, streaming, and other video on-demand services which mean that traditional viewing times have shifted and extended from the live broadcast window to the days and weeks after an episode airs.
One in every six occasions, viewers who watch primetime television are also using social media, whether its related to the show they’re watching or not.
This is according to the latest study from the Council for Research Excellence (CRE) based on a sample of 1,665 respondents between September and October 2013.
In an earlier study carried out by Deloitte in 2013, more than half of adults admitted to interacting with another form of media while they watch television, this is more than double the previous year’s figure of 24% who admit to second screening.
This is a huge increase and this figure will likely rise even more steeply in 2014. The Deloitte research however covers all activity on a mobile device, whether it’s interacting on social media, shopping, browsing the internet for unrelated information or sending emails.
Let’s take a look at some more results from the CRE study, which mainly concentrates on the use of social media while second-screening.
Forgive the first person pronoun in the headline, but television is the most emotive of subjects.
Not for nothing does the Simpsons use the TV set as a cultural trope. Perhaps the emergence of broadband and the creative decline of the Simpsons is more than correlative?
Anyway, I don’t dispute the second screen phenomenon, not one bit. I use my phone whilst watching TV all the time.
What I am disputing, outside of a few important examples, is the extent of consumer demand for contextual second screen experiences. Within this disputation comes the assertion that a lot of second screen use is indeed not contextual (aside from social media use) and cannot therefore be ‘monetised’ as such.
Of course, fans of the second screen may point out that the reason second screen usage isn’t yet contextual is because second screen services and apps are nowhere near maturation yet. There may be improved uses and better content to come.
I’d argue that the same problems that beset social advertising (a place for branding but not sales) will ultimately beset the second screen, driven as it is by the demand for socialising whilst watching the box.
See if you agree with my devil’s advocate’s views.
One need only look at the trending topics on any given evening to know that Twitter is a popular tool for discussing television shows.
The network has become the go-to forum for reaction to TV programmes and is one of the few things that ensures people still watch live TV rather than relying on on-demand services.
However a new report suggests that Facebook may also be a popular talking shop for TV shows.
But the new report suggests we may have been wrong to dismiss Facebook’s potential for TV chatter, with up to a quarter of the television audience posting content related to the show they are watching on Facebook.
Connected experiences which seamlessly fuse second screens and connected TVs have been ‘the future of TV’ for so long it almost feels like a returning series.
Playing along with a quiz show, requesting a product sample during an advert, taking a breakfast news feature with you on your morning commute so you can finish watching, all could be routine.
But despite the enablers and technology being in place this seismic shift in the viewing experience stubbornly refuses to go mainstream. Why is this?
When two very different industries like traditional broadcast television and digital collide, it’s difficult to ignore the implications on both sides.
While analysts predict that 60% of households will be watching internet TV by 2014 and many companies are trying to capitalise on shifting viewing habits, the connected TV market is still in a nascent stage.
To coincide with the recent release of Econsultancy’s Connected TV Smart Pack, we’ve identified five key elements of this emerging ecosystem that any marketer needs to be aware of.
These are what we call the five Cs of connected TV...
Network execs, client-side reps, and ad folks crowded the Televisual Expo organized by the Collaborative Alliance in New York City’s financial district last week.
The small but crowded tradeshow featured 50 vendors of heavyweights, such as DirecTV and Comcast, and newbies such as Tapjoy, which FastCompany featured last month in its list of most innovative firms.
As we evolve how we consume media, the talk of social TV, or connected TV as it's also known as, dominated the panel discussions at SXSW.
We had the chance to catch up with Sam Decker, CEO of Mass Relevance, and Alisha Outridge, CEO of Taptank, to talk about what they thought about how we're merging social media with television.
New research from Diffusion and YouGov suggests that one in five British TV viewers (17%) use social media as a way of discovering new programmes.
Based on an online survey of 2,025 UK consumers aged 18 to 55+, the report found that 39% turned to social media to guide them in their TV choices (defined as "helping discover new TV shows and be alerted to programmes that are currently on and being talked about") - while 17% use social media to gain a "fresh perspective on what they are watching".
The team from Bravo took to the stage yesterday morning at SXSW to talk about what they are doing to change the way we consume and interact with television. Just like every other business out there, television programs are having to move to a more integrated offering.
To demonstrate this, they presented the last season of Top Chef as a case study to show what they did to breach the gap and capture our attention on our second screens.
MTV has moved into the social TV market with a new mobile app called MTV Under The Thumb.
The app allows users to watch MTV on-demand content simultaneously with friends and chat about it in the app at the same time.
Users can also share their favourite shows through Facebook and watch the content through their desktop computer by connecting their mobile to a web browser with the mobile then acting as a remote control.
The app, which was developed by Viacom and AKQA, is initially being launched free on iOS and Android in Europe with additional subscription models for premium content.