How Social Has Changed TV For Better Or Worse
TV has changed a lot while some things have remained the same. The same boring commercials that multi-Billion dollar companies spend Millions upon Millions of dollars on every year. The same reality shows that are as much a "reality" show as I am handsome and enviable. The same news channels that talk gloom and doom 24/7.
One thing that's changed with TV however is social media. Being that a very large percentage of people watching TV have one or more mobile devices on them, it's natural that those who use social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, are going to talk about it. And that they do.
As I write this, the Oscars are predicting to top the Super Bowl in terms of Twitter and Facebook comments with upwards of 13 Million. Social media driving viewers and engagement to TV is nothing new. It's become a great tool for television and has helped many shows keep up ratings while more and more eyeballs shift online.
People want to talk. And people want to talk about something that either makes them happy, or makes them upset.
TV shows ignoring social media is quite easily losing them out on a ton of eyeballs. Channels that are embracing it are benefiting. Three channels that come to mind are A&E, The History Channel, and Bravo.
Now, I don't watch Bravo, but I know that Andy Cohen, Executive VP of original programming and development at Bravo, has done wonders to integrate social and not only that, but get the stars of their shows involved. Not only do they tweet on a regular basis, but they tweet live during the airing of a new show which gets their combined audiences involved.
One of my favorite shows, Shark Tank, applies this same concept and I find it very cool to hear some of their thoughts behind a deal, what they thought of the person pitching them, or the banter between the fellow investors. It's a nice extension and added benefit of watching the show.
TV is in it's mid-life crisis, but social media is keeping it sane.
Now, one of the downsides of social media and TV is that people in later time zones can spoil it for those on earlier time zones. To be honest, I use TweetDeck and if I happen to forget about a show or aren't able to watch it, I actually setup filters so anyone I'm following who is watching it, doesn't spoil it for me.
You know, #FirstWorldProblems.
The Grammy's happened just recently and there was a lot of talk that those on the east coast ruined it for those on the west coast. This is just one of those necessary evils. Again, people want to talk about something they find interesting or upsetting.
The sky is the limit for both social and TV. The channels that further integrate social media and form an effective strategy around their shows, are the ones who will remain relevant. We've been seeing more and more of that and there's still a ton of room for growth.
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