Network TV Draws Substantial Social Media Chatter

American-Idol-Final-ASocial media activity for all broadcast networks increased substantially in May, the last month of the TV season, versus that of a year ago. ABC earned the greatest gain for any broadcast network.

Overall, broadcast TV shows garnered the most social media activity, with 71 million social media interactions in May; cable TV shows were at 40 million. Broadcast TV shows' activity was up 32% from the month before.

Fox’s “American Idol” was the easy winner when it came to social media messages of a regularly scheduled TV show -- some 1.4 million for its finale, per social media researcher Trendrr.TV. This was more than three times the previous season, when there were some 450,000.

The next-biggest social media TV show finale was “Glee,” with around 400,000 versus around 275,000 the year before. “Grey’s Anatomy” followed at just over 300,000; CW’s “Vampire Diaires” had just under 300,000.



But when it came to all reality TV, cable network shows shone during May with VH1’s “Basketball Wives” getting some 425,000 messages, MTV’s “America’s Best Dance Crew” was next at just under 350,000; and Oxygen’s “Bad Girls Club” followed, pulling in just under “Dance Crew."

When it comes to social media platforms for TV, Twitter commanded the biggest share at 59% in May for broadcast TV shows. This was followed by Viggle, a growing social media site that caters to TV viewers through incentive programs, at 18% share. GetGlue was next at 14%, followed by Facebook at 9%. When it came to cable TV shows, Twitter's results were even better in May, at a 74% share. Viggle and Facebook each at 10%; and GetGlue had 6%.

As it did with Nielsen viewing metrics, Fox scored the best of any network for the month -- some 6.5 million social media messages; ABC was at around 5.7 million; NBC, 3.9 million; CW, 2.1 million; and CBS, 1.8 million. ABC made the greatest gains year-to-year. In the May sweep period of a year ago, it pulled in 1.1 million, which grew fivefold in May 2012. Every network grew exponentially, as TV and social media continue to grow rapidly.

Social media as it relates to sports on TV continues to be a big draw. The NBA Playoffs pulled the biggest individual results. With games such as the Los Angeles Lakers-Denver Nuggets; Los Angeles Lakers-Oklahoma City Thunder, and Boston Celtics-Miami Heat each drawing close to 1.8 million messages apiece on specific nights in May.

For all its games in May, the Lakers-Nuggets series pulled in the most social media activity -- nearly 4.5 million interactions. The Lakers-Thunder series was next at 3.0 million.

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