Stay Tuned for Social TV

The “Social TV Summit,” a small conference with a select group of attendees, was held in Los Angeles on July 20. It explored “social media and its effect on viewing content on TV, online, on tablets, and on mobile,” according to the summit organizers. While it was an invitation-only event for social media and TV executives, the subject matter should be of interest to all online marketers.

Dave Morgan, CEO of Simulmedia, reported on the summit for MediaPost. He pointed out that even the definition of “social TV” is in the formative stages. He defines it as “all of the activity occurring at the intersection of social media and television devices and programming. It includes second screens used while watching TV, networked companion devices that support or relate to TV, social tools and applications on connected TVs, and all of the TV-related content and conversations on social media.”

Morgan says that 78 percent of the viewing public both watch TV and surf the web at least monthly, and one third of all Web browsing occurs in front of a TV. In addition, 35 percent of tablet and iPad usage occurs in front of the television, according to Morgan.

The intersection of social media and TV was discussed at a number of sessions, and it’s further along than you might think. Stephanie Gibbons, EVP of Marketing and On-Air Promotion for the FX Network, said that FX is now putting producers who focus exclusively on social media directly into its TV productions. The FX show, “It’s Always Sunny in Philadephia” for example, integrates social media into the script by “offering incentives for viewers to tune in and tweet during designated times,” according to Reuters. Apparently Danny DeVito, one of the cast members, directly interacts with fans via Twitter.

In another example offered at the summit, NBC employed social media to promote its show, “The Voice.” Celebrity coaches and contestants were encouraged to tweet before, during, and after the show. According to Peter Naylor, EVP of Digital Media Sales for NBC, it was social media that created “a 24/7 conversation with fans” and helped turn the show into one of the summer’s biggest ratings winners.

An application called SnappyTV won the award at the summit for the best social TV concept. Here’s the way the company describes it:

SnappyTV is a new service that allows you to share the best moments from live TV and share them with friends and family on Twitter and Facebook. While you’re watching TV, visit SnappyTV on your laptop or mobile phone. Then hit Snap and we’ll capture what you just saw instantly then add a caption to your snap and you’re ready to share it on Facebook and Twitter. You can also view snaps created by other users, leave a comment and share those too.

There is also an entire measurement category emerging in this area. Trendrr, for example, is a new company that processes social data around media. The company can track such things as mentions of shows in brand conversations while the shows are airing and examine patterns in show behavior across all social channels and similarly engaged audiences.

Industry analyst Jack Myers, who publishes the Jack Myers Media Business Report, predicted at the summit that social TV marketing could be a $12 billion market by 2020. While revenue projections are never a safe bet, the dominance of social media in today’s technology world lends some weight to Myers’ forecast. Regardless of the actual number, social TV is something all of us should be watching.

About Barry Silverstein

Barry Silverstein is a freelance writer/marketing consultant. In addition to writing for ReveNews, he is a contributing writer to Brandchannel.com, the world’s leading online branding forum. He is the author of three marketing books, The Breakaway Brand (co-author, McGraw-Hill, 2005), Business-to-Business Internet Marketing (Maximum Press, 2003) and Internet Marketing for Technology Companies (Maximum Press, 2003). Barry ran his own Internet and direct marketing agency for twenty years. You can find Barry on Twitter @bdsilv.

2 Responses to Stay Tuned for Social TV

  1. OK, thank you so much for a great news.

  2. Social media is really vast and can help any business to generate traffic for a website.