There was a huge amount of buzz last year around the inevitable rise of connected TV, which sounded great but rather ignored the fact that viewers were already using their smartphones to interact with what they were watching.
New apps like Zeebox have achieved huge success by allowing people to share their TV viewing experience with others, but Twitter and Facebook remain as two of the main ways of talking about TV.
To highlight the depth of this link, Twitter has published a new report revealing some of the ways in which consumers use the social network to engage with TV shows.
Here are some of the most interesting stats and cases studies, but for more information on this topic checkout our Twitter for Business Best Practice Guide and this blog post on what can we learn from the top five retail brands on Twitter.
Key Twitter stats
- There are more than 10m Twitter users in the UK, of which 80% access the platform using a mobile device.
- 60% of Twitter users access the social network while watching TV.
- 40% of all UK Twitter traffic around peak time is about TV.
- More than 90% of online public conversations about TV are on Twitter.
Programme case studies
The report, which draws on social TV analytics data and charts provided by Twitter UK partner SecondSync Limited, states that social profiles and tweet patterns of programmes vary by three key factors: genre, demographics and time slot.
Peaks in tweets are often driven by content, storyline, celebrity tweets and hashtags on air.
Drama shows tend to see peaks in tweets at the beginning and end of the episodes.
This chart shows the tweets-per-minute achieved during an episode of Homeland in October. There were 15,675 tweets that reached an audience of 11.1m users.
Entertainment: Made In Chelsea
Entertainment shows tend to see a higher proportion of tweets from mobile, and peaks in activity are largely content-led but also occur during ads.
Made in Chelsea has a high ratio of viewers to people tweeting – one in four viewers is also actively engaged on Twitter during most episodes.
During this particular episode there were 215,220 tweets from 110,162 users, reaching a whopping a potential 124.2m users.
Current Affairs: Panorama
Current affairs sees a higher proportion of tweets from desktop, with peaks largely following climactic moments in the story narrative or prompts from hashtags on air.
Panorama has a long tail of engagement with conversations on Twitter continuing long after the show had finished.
In this case there were 38,243 tweets from 23,391 users, reaching an audience of 78.5m people.
X Factor 2012
ITV’s ratings behemoth generated more than 14m tweets in 2012, driven by integration of dynamic hashtags on air, celebrity tweets and a “passionate Twitter audience.”
The first live shows achieved a high volume of mentions, with a doubling of the number of tweets sent from last year.
During the final there were 1.12m tweets from 505k unique users. The eventual winner, James Arthur, was mentioned 387,000 times compared to 86,000 mentions for Jahmene Douglas.
Coca-Cola’s promoted trend
Twitter’s promoted trend and tweets are its way of monetising the platform by allowing brands to target users by placing marketing messages in their feeds. It means that brands can get their ads in front of users that don’t normally follow them.
Coca-Cola used a promoted trend to seed its Christmas ad on Twitter before it was aired on TV using the hashtag #holidaysarecoming.
The trend boosted discovery of the campaign, which eventually gained almost 100,000 tweets and potentially reached 7.6m users.