At the beginning of February, KUTV‘s morning team announced that they would be competing in a “Facebook Faceoff,” a race featuring anchors Ron Bird and Mary Nickles, reporters Kelly Chapman and Casey Scott, and meteorologist Debbie Worthen to see who could rack up the most Likes on Facebook.
The “Facebook Faceoff” was part of an aggressive push by the Salt Lake City CBS-affiliate to increase viewer engagement on Facebook, which would hopefully offer a ratings boost as KUTV tried to wrestle the crown from former powerhouse KSL during the February sweeps period.
It looks like KUTV’s Facebook campaign paid off.
“I think social media helped KUTV 2News win every newscast during February sweeps,” KUTV news director Jennifer Dahl told Lost Remote recently. “We have a strategy and it’s working.”
Lost Remote points out:
Most local TV stations average around 15,000 to 30,000 Facebook fans, but a station in the nation’s 32nd largest market has more Facebook fans than some network TV shows. KUTV in Salt Lake recently surpassed 200,000 fans.
In February, KUTV was #1 in every time slot in which it aired local news, including the hotly contested 10 p.m. slot.