BuzzFeed president and COO Jon Steinberg said, “Everyone talks about the two-screen experience being synchronous but it is also asynchronous. People learn about the shows they want to watch online, and after watching those shows, they go back to the web to read and share about those shows.”
In connection with the Social Tune In Program, IFC has created a recurring on-air Saturday night ‘BuzzFeed Block,’ which is a double-feature bill of movies accompanied by accompanying lists exclusively created for IFC by BuzzFeed and available on both of their websites.
According to IFC, the ‘BuzzFeed Block’ has helped the network increase viewership on Saturday nights by 16% in the 18-49 and 18-34 age groups in the first quarter of 2014. Bravo has used the program to promote the “Online Dating Rituals for the American Male” on BuzzFeed as well as the “Real Housewives Awards.” With such positive results already, it is obvious the Social Tune In Program is working and will likely continue to grow with new partnerships to come.
The UK based Social TV App, Zeebox, has recently rebranded and relaunched their website, and iOS and Android apps under the new name of Beamly. Originally launched in 2011, Beamly wanted to change from being seen as a geeky TV guide app to a co-viewing experience that would allow users to follow and discuss their favorite TV shows and celebrities all day long.
Currently with 2 million active users, Zeebox’s original features, such as the live chat and screen sync functions, will remain. The additional new features allow for many more interactions, making Beamly more of a social network based around television interests. Users will now have access to news feeds and social media topics about their favorite TV shows, and they will be able to follow their favorite TV shows and celebrities at any time. Co-founder and CFO Anthony Rose explained, “We had a dream which was to create participation TV… One day we realized that people perceived Zeebox as a new type of TV guide rather than a co-viewing experience. So in the last six months we’ve set about transitioning from model one, which was essentially that synchronized Twitter playalong experience, to a fully fledged social network for television.”
With the relaunch, Beamly is able to adapt to the vast changes that are occurring in TV viewing. Along with the changing trends of TV viewer habits, there is also the change in audience that Beamly has seen with their users. According to Rose, once users were allowed to follow shows, they were using the app twice as often, and once shows were allowed to follow them back, users were returning ten times as often. This feeling of a community attracted a lot of females and transformed Beamly’s users from a group of geeky men to a diverse audience, that is now mostly 16-24 year old females in the US.
By being able to adapt so well to the constantly changing TV viewing habits, Beamly will be sure to increase their user base and shake that geeky image that they previously had.
This past week Instagram surpassed Twitter for having the most mobile users according to data from eMarketer. This news is extremely important for social TV as Twitter continues to be the number one social platform for TV viewers. Twitter has about 30.8 million users while Instagram now has 35 million and does not appear to be slowing down anytime soon.
According to a study done by the Council for Research Excellence, 1 out of 6 primetime TV viewers are using social media and about one half of their social media activity is related to programming they are watching. Additionally, social media was more than twice as effective at driving viewers to new shows than returning shows. This data along with Instagram overtaking Twitter in mobile users is incredibly important for TV executives to think about. Twitter continues to be the leading social media site that TV shows use, both in and out of season, to communicate with their fans. As consumers become more mobile-minded, social strategies will need to change to keep up with shifting platform usage.
Since Twitter was first introduced in 2006, the social network has become the first choice outlet for anyone who wants to engage online while watching TV. People are constantly “live tweeting” various TV specials, whether it be the newest episode of Scandal, or the Oscars. But one genre that seems to engage Twitter users far more than any other is sports.
According to data recently released from Nielson Twitter TV Ratings, an astounding 50% of all tweets about TV in North America were related to sporting events in 2013. Sports comprised 12 out of the 20 most tweeted-about TV broadcasts last year and Nielsen suggests that “this high level of engagement around sports events is significant as teams, programmers and advertisers look to reach and amplify messaging to audiences across screens.”
This study comes just in time for March Madness, the NCAA men’s basketball tournament that started this past week. For the first time ever the semi-final round will be shown on cable TV, making this a huge opportunity for marketers everywhere as March Madness generates the most TV ad revenue over all other pro sport league’s postseason broadcasts.
And while sporting events attract conversation from fans all over the world, broadcasters and advertisers alike will need to find clever and interesting ways to join the conversation and continue to drive engagement.
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno came to an end after 22 seasons last week, and with the end of an era came the start of a new one with the debut of The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. Jay Leno’s farewell show on February 6th reached 14.64 million viewers and Fallon’s debut reached 11.31 million. While both episodes are the two most viewed Tonight Show episodes, which one accumulated more social buzz?
According to NielsonSocial Guide, and reported by Mashable, Fallon attracted more buzz on Twitter than did his predecessor. Roughly 79,900 unique accounts sent 157,600 tweets that night, amounting to 15.6 million Twitter impressions (number of tweets seen). This was much higher than Leno’s last episode which garnered 79,400 tweets from 52,400 accounts resulting in 9.9 million impressions. While the disparity could be related to the impressive list of big stars Fallon brought on for his first episode, it could also be due to the differing audiences which the comedians attract. Fallon draws a much younger crowd which is known to be more active via social media and therefore could result in the higher number of tweets and impressions.
Fallon’s most popular segment on the opening episode, “$100 Tonight Show Bet” can be seen in the clip below.
Last month at CES, a new way to watch TV was introduced. InAiR, created by SeeSpace, has the ability to simultaneously place web content on a users TV. This allows users the ability to browse Facebook or Twitter or any other online medium they choose all while watching TV.
“Viewers don’t want to watch TV in isolation any more. They want context: graphics, information and social engagement. Today, there is no easy way to display this content without the second screen,” said Nam Do, co-founder and CEO of SeeSpace. “We had to crack both the design and the technical challenges to deliver InAiR, a completely new kind of viewer interface. InAiR makes use of the entire viewing space in front of the TV, and creates a new medium of combined media like nothing people have interacted with before.”
InAiR is designed to work with any existing TV and the only hardware needed is the InAiR Smart HDMI Adapter (shown in the image above). Once a customer has this hardware, they can easily just plug it into their computer and enjoy InAiR Augmented TV right away.
How does one control it? Simply download the free InAiR app on your smart phone, tablet, or smart watch even, and use your thumbs to swipe and scroll across content on the screen to control it on your TV. InAiR has the incredible ability to identify relevant information from the web and social media outlets that it can then deliver to the customer’s screen all in real time with their TV viewing.
InAiR will be available to preorder for $99 via a Kickstarter campaign launched last month. With 26 days left to go in their campaign, SeeSpace has already surpassed their funding goal by 107%, showing the high demand for this product.