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Social TV has turned watching TV into an interactive experience—an experience that connects viewers in the moment with friends, content creators, stars, and likeminded—or not so likeminded—fans. But, who are these viewers that are Tweeting about TV? And, who’s seeing their Tweets? With the launch of demographics for Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings, we now know.

An initial analysis of Twitter TV demographics across 273 broadcast and cable program episodes reveals three important findings. First, there’s a broad age and gender distribution across programming. Second, there are significant differences in the age and gender profiles of Tweeters across programming types. Most importantly, Twitter enables TV networks and advertisers to reach audiences beyond their core demographics.

In prior research, Nielsen Social found that the people who see TV-related Tweets outnumber Twitter TV Authors by a margin of 50-1. This recent analysis reveals that the Twitter TV Audience is also more demographically balanced than Twitter TV Authors. This important finding indicates that TV advertisers and programs can complement and extend traditional TV reach through Twitter TV audiences. A program that skews older could connect with a younger audience through the reach of Tweets sent about the show. Similarly, a program that skews female can reach a more male audience through the reach of Tweets sent about the show.

Twitter TV Authors for the episodes analyzed ranged from 12 percent male to 92 percent male. The program episode skewing oldest counted 85 percent of its Twitter TV Authors above the age of 35, while 98 percent of the Twitter Authors for the youngest-skewing program were below the age of 35. On average, the Twitter TV Authors for Sports Events skewed 79 percent male, while Reality programs skewed 65 percent female. Reality programs also had a younger mix of Twitter TV Authors: 75 percent were below the age of 35. Comparatively, just 63 percent of authors were below 35 for Comedy programs.

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