How Much Social Engagement Is Being Driven by Talent From TV Shows and Specials, Athletes?

Nielsen Social Content Ratings examined a three-week period during the fall premiere season

Talent accounts were behind nearly one-third of all posts lolostock/iStock
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Nielsen Social Content Ratings took a deeper look at the impact of television-related accounts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram that are representing talent from TV shows and athletes.

The measurement firm examined more than 160,000 pieces of TV-related content across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, as well as over 250 million engagement from active owned accounts, during a three-week period that coincided with the 2018 fall series premieres.

Nielsen Social Content Ratings
Nielsen Social Content Ratings

Nielsen Social Content Ratings found that talent accounts generated nearly 20 million engagements during the time period it studied, or some 30 percent of total owned engagement for series and special programming. Talent accounts also were behind nearly one-third of all posts.

Nielsen Social Content Ratings
Nielsen Social Content Ratings

The number of organization-level network, program, league and team accounts were roughly equal across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter during the three-week period, Nielsen Social Content Ratings said, but individual-level accounts for talent and athletes were far more concentrated on Twitter.

The company found that Twitter accounts represented 63 percent of total accounts for talent and 84 percent of those for athletes. In addition, 56 percent of engagement with talent accounts and 53 percent with athlete accounts came via Twitter.

Instagram, meanwhile, was the engagement hub for organization-level accounts, with 88 percent of engagement for sports league accounts coming from the Facebook-owned photo- and video-sharing network, along with 66 percent for team accounts.

On Facebook, Nielsen Social Content Ratings found that organization-level and program accounts generated more engagement than talent accounts, but the script was flipped for sports, where athlete accounts dominated.

Nielsen Social Content Ratings

Nielsen Social president Sean Casey said, “Knowing how specific TV talent and program-associated accounts are performing across social media platforms opens up countless opportunities for programmers. Measuring a social media account’s impact is no longer a mystery. Now, TV talent, as well as the networks themselves, can quantify their accounts’ social engagement and leverage those insights to optimize their social strategy within their media mix. We can finally fill in more missing pieces around a television show’s total social footprint.”

He added, “On-screen TV talent, and even those behind the cameras, can have massive followings, especially on social media. How they leverage those audiences on social can have an impact on who and how many are watching their show. We can help put value behind their accounts.”

Nielsen Social Content Ratings said in a blog post revealing its findings, “In the hyper-connected media world, social media accounts have become a valuable asset in the promotion and, consequently, the popularity of programs across the television landscape. Talent in particular underscores an important part of the overall owned strategy for content providers and sports organizations. Amplifying the voice of talent accounts, or even recruiting and casting talent with established social influence, can prove useful for both new and old TV programs. Still, different account types have their own unique conditions under which they perform best, and understanding the nuances between each can help maximize the investments content owners and marketers are making in social.” David Cohen is editor of Adweek's Social Pro Daily.