Archive for the ‘social television’ tag
By now, you’ve probably heard us talking about Union Metrics Echo – our brand new tool to help you explore and analyze anything from Twitter’s archive, instantly. We wanted to show you what, exactly, you can do with it. So here’s one of the lessons we learned using Union Metrics Echo to dig into Twitter data. Want a demo of Echo to see how it can work for you? Schedule one here.
Two of the top shows in Twitter’s history are The Walking Dead on AMC and Empire on FOX. They’ve taken different paths to their social success, and generate very different conversations on social media. But there are a few lessons we can learn about social TV and how Twitter embraces its favorite shows.
The Walking Dead premiered in a very different time – way back in 2010. Twitter had not yet become to be the place to talk about TV. The first season of TWD was only six episodes and over those six weeks, there were about a million total tweets about The Walking Dead, including some lead up to the premiere and discussion after the finale. The premiere episode generated the most buzz, earning 63k tweets on the day it aired, October 31, 2010. TWD averaged about 150k Tweets per week during its first season.
What makes the The Walking Dead so interesting – and one of the reasons it’s been so successful on Twitter – is that it followed a very different pattern than most shows do on social, even from the very beginning. The biggest tweet volume spike of the week was on the day the episode aired, as holds true for all shows, then and now. But volumes for The Walking Dead only decreased slightly in the two days following each episode, which is unique. It retained 50-80% of size the original conversation on Twitter for two days after. Most shows generate some conversation the next day, but at significantly reduced volumes, usually around 10% of the episode day’s conversation. Here’s a streamgraph showing the daily tweet volumes for the first season of The Walking Dead. You can see big and then only slightly-less-big spikes corresponding to when an episode aired.
Starting in the second season, The Walking Dead began airing each season in two parts with a few months break in between. In 2011, tweets about the show increased considerably, premiering with 200k tweets and hitting 350k during the finale. It generated 5.6 million tweets over the full season, and averaged 375k tweets per week (when episodes were airing). But more impressively, TWD continued to follow the same pattern it established the year before, with larger-than-average Tweet volumes the two days after the episode airs. This is really unlike any other show on TV. And it still holds mostly true today; the most recent season of The Walking Dead saw a big spike on episode day, then maintained 30% of that conversation the day after.
So why is this? Why does The Walking Dead generate so much conversation on non-show days? There are a lot of time-delayed viewers of TWD, which was true even back in 2010, which means more people talk about it on Twitter in the few days following a new episode. And The Walking Dead gives everyone a lot to talk about after an episode airs. It’s a show that embraces drama, cliffhangers and water-cooler moments. It’s not afraid to kill off important characters. And it’s one of the most reviewed shows on TV; people love to write and discuss it.
The Walking Dead has been a social media sensation for five years. Even now in 2015, TWD continues to hold strong on Twitter, generating nearly a million tweets every week it airs.
But let’s compare The Walking Dead to one of the newest social TV sensations – Empire. Empire premiered earlier in 2015. Its first episode started relatively small on premiere day, generating 135k tweets on January 7. However, Empire followed a unique pattern that only a few shows can hope to emulate. It generated more tweets each week as the season went on, not fewer. Most shows see an initial spike when they premiere, then see weekly declines after that. The lucky ones get another spike during the finale, but the unlucky ones continue to decline over time. During its first season, Empire saw more tweets each week than the week before. This culminated in a powerful final episode, that generated 1.7 million tweets on March 18, making it one of the most tweeted about shows of all time. You can see the weekly increase in this graph, which shows bigger and bigger daily tweet volume spikes until the finale episode.
It helps that Empire had a short first season and didn’t take any weeks off. It aired 12 episodes, one each week for 12 weeks. A shorter season helps audiences stay engaged. The marketing team behind Empire worked tirelessly to promote the show and engage its audience across social media. The new season of Empire just aired, generating 860k tweets on premiere (just beating The Walking Dead premiere’s 801k tweets a couple weeks later).
Both The Walking Dead and Empire are on lists of the most tweeted-about TV shows of all time. It’s fascinating to look at the different ways they’ve built an audience on Twitter and the patterns around how their fans tweet.
We’ve looked at how people discuss entertainment across social channels, but that doesn’t necessarily mean everyone is always on their best behavior. (Or blocking and reporting options on every platform wouldn’t be such an important feature.)
So if you’re going to live-tweet (or blog, or post or otherwise socially share) your favorite TV show, stick to these two main rules of social television posting, and you’ll be golden. Best of all, these tips work for fans and for brands. So if you’re tweeting on behalf of a show or just about it, here’s how to do without losing or pissing off any followers.
And if you think of anything we missed, leave it in the comments or find us on Twitter at @UnionMetrics.
Tag or forewarn your spoilers.
Most social networks support (hash)tags, and many have a system in place for muting or otherwise avoiding specific hashtags, though sometimes you have to use a third-party app to do this. Letting your followers know ahead of time that you’ll be live-tweeting a show, and which hashtags you’ll be using, gives them a chance to mute you or the tag so they can keep their stream spoiler-free without having to unfollow you.
— TweetDeck (@TweetDeck) September 26, 2013
Instagram’s design means you’re only going to see photos from those you’ve followed or hashtags that you’ve searched, so just don’t post actual spoilers as hashtags and your followers should have no reason to complain.
Facebook seems to be the place a lot of fans get spoiled through friends sharing memes or making thoughtless status updates in the heat of the moment, so Mashable covered how to stay spoiler-free on Facebook. Again, give your followers fair warning, think twice before you share, and your fans and followers should have no reason to complain!
If you just can’t resist posting spoilers or discussing a show as it unfolds, however, at least say that what you’re posting will contain spoilers. It’s the minimum social media courtesy to extend.
Play to each platform’s strengths.
If you’re live-tweeting something like an awards show, don’t be afraid to share a little bit on each social profile you have a presence; simply play to each platform’s strengths. For example, you can share photos of your setup on Instagram (especially if you dress up and have themed snacks, or even just cute pets watching with you), live-tweet, and break everything down later on Tumblr. Tumblr, known home of fandom, is a great place to share and analyze favorite show or movie moments, replaying them in GIFs and clever text posts you can reblog and add onto.
Facebook is really best for a single post about something you’ve watched or plan to watch, and maybe cross-posting an Instagram photo. It’s easy to flood the feeds of your Facebook friends and followers, and that’s a good way to get unfollowed or unfriended. Likewise you only want to post a photo or two to Instagram, and save the rest for #TBT.
Want to know how your live tweets performed? Run a free TweetReach snapshot report to get an idea of the conversation and see how far your tweets reached. You can also run a free Union Metrics Instagram account checkup to see if that party picture was your most successful, or if you should have posted it at a different time of day with different hashtags.
Did you see our full fall TV preview last week? Some of the new shows have aired their premieres, so we wanted to check in with two of the early favorites, Scream Queens and The Muppets, both of which premiered last night, September 22.
FOX launched a huge promotional campaign earlier this year. And that has been paying off on Twitter, at least. Scream Queens generated nearly a million tweets yesterday, the day of the series premiere. In the month leading up to the premiere, an average of 13,000 tweets were posted every day about the show. For a brand new show, these are huge numbers. Scream Queens also benefits from above-average star power, with a cast and creator that are bringing in a large existing fan-base.
Here’s a look at tweets about Scream Queens and The Muppets over the past 24 hours or so. There are big spikes from 5-7pm and 8-9pm PT, corresponding to when the show aired on the East and West Coasts. We’ve highlighted the biggest spike, during the 5pm PT hour.
There were more than 173k tweets about Scream Queens during the first hour, with sustained conversation for the next several hours, bringing yesterday’s tweet totals to more 910k. There were only 22k tweets about The Muppets during that time, and 66k all day.
Scream Queens didn’t perform as well in the ratings as expected. In fact, The Muppets came out ahead, which is somewhat surprising, given how many more tweets there were about Scream Queens. On the other hand, a lot of the Twitter conversation about Scream Queens was driven by celebrities like Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande, and those fans may not have actually tuned in to watch. We’ll keep monitoring the tweets, and see how it progresses over the next few weeks.
What do you think? Did you watch either of these new shows?
Everyone has their favorite social network just like they have favorite shows and celebrities, so we thought it would be interesting to look at how the conversation around those favorites has evolved across different networks. Even if you’re not in entertainment marketing, this post should give you a deeper look at the language and culture of various social platforms, giving you a better idea of which one is the best fit for your brand. (Hint: It’s always the one where your audience prefers to spend time.)
Twitter: Live-tweet your heart out
Twitter is, of course, known for the live-tweet: Join in with thousands of others as they tweet along to an awards show, their favorite show each week, or a movie they’re just seeing for the first time. Hollywood has caught on to this phenomenon and extended the sense of intimacy social media gives to fans of celebrities by encouraging the stars of shows to live-tweet along with their fans when the show airs, doing Q&As and sharing their own behind-the-scenes photos and videos. Stars Hayley Atwell and Bridget Regan were active live-tweeters during Agent Carter, and Hayley Atwell continues to post fun behind-the-scenes shots during the off-season to keep fans engaged.
— Bridget Regan (@BridgetRegan) February 18, 2015
This activity actually boosts overall tweeting about the program, based on research from Twitter themselves:
“As it turns out, one of the most powerful and direct ways to drive conversation about a program on Twitter is to have the stars of the show engaged on Twitter, particularly during the airing. In fact, we found that shows live-Tweeting from cast members during the premiere had 64% more Tweets that day compared to programs that did nothing.”
Aside from live-tweeting, fans tend to tweet about how excited they are leading up to a broadcast, or make a lot of cynical jokes about it if it’s an awards show (but hey, they’re still watching it!). They’ll follow official accounts and chat with each other about different fan theories, but this is obviously all a bit truncated due to the 140-character limit on tweets. Fans who want more, more, more on their favorites- especially during the off-season- head to Tumblr.
Tumblr: Where fandom lives
Tumblr is the undisputed home of fandom. This is the place fans go to share their fan-fiction (fanfic), write posts about different character and storyline theories (or their own “fanon”; things they’ve read in fanfic or theories they’ve seen reblogged that they’ve added to the canon of the show for themselves) and theories about the larger universe behind a show or film franchise, write about the actors who portray their favorite characters and share photos of them, create and share fan art, and so much more.
You might read that and think, well, isn’t that what fans do on every social network? What makes Tumblr so special? And the answer is the reblogging feature: Being able to reblog someone else’s fan theory and add your own thoughts to it really accelerates the conversation and makes it deeper. Certain posts become inside jokes for a fandom, and fandoms even create their own “official” blogs, run right alongside official blogs from a network. (The official Doctor Who Tumblr often reblogs fan art and other fan posts to keep their readership engaged.)
Sometimes fandoms merge into super fandoms, like SuperWhoLock, a mix of Doctor Who, Sherlock and Supernatural fans. Sometimes the actors themselves get involved in a fandom, like Orlando Jones and the Sleepyheads (Sleepy Hollow fandom).
All of this adds up to fans being very engaged in their shows between seasons, and giving an even longer shelf-life to Tumblr content as old fandom posts can resurface to be rehashed and reblogged again and again with newer insights and theories.
Facebook: Beware spoilers
There are a few different forms of fandom on Facebook:
- Pages built as hubs for fandom outside of Tumblr to share information, as seen here.
- Individual, often spoiler-filled posts on your NewsFeed from various friends and family members after a big finale like Game of Thrones.
- Posts from Facebook themselves around different fandoms like March Madness.
Facebook is the perfect place for a friend to drop a link about your favorite show onto your wall or even set up a private group to plan a viewing party, but fandom doesn’t go as deep here as it does on Tumblr, and it’s more difficult to live-Facebook a show than it is to live-tweet it. Twitter feeds move much faster than Facebook News Feeds do, making them much more ideal for sharing the experience of a live-viewing with an audience.
Instagram: Fans share excitement in photo form
It might not seem like the most intuitive way to use Instagram, but fans definitely post about their favorite shows and the actors in them on their Instagram accounts alongside their personal photos. Sometimes they share official promotional photos from a show’s upcoming season, or maybe the set-up for their viewing party. Smart brands know about this activity and capitalize on it, becoming part of the conversation that’s already happening. For examples see how Teen Wolf fans post about the show on Instagram, and learn from the very best in terms of audience engagement with ABC Family’s Instagram activity.
Sports fans are active in their Instagram activity too, and you can see examples in our posts about The World Series on Instagram: San Francisco Giants vs. Kansas City Royals or The NHL on Instagram: On being official, fans, and more.
The majority of the connection and amplification of posts on Instagram comes through hashtags; fans can find other fan accounts they may want to follow by using Instagram’s improved search, and any entertainment brands who want to get in on those conversations would be wise to listen to the talk that’s already happening before figuring out how to encourage it and join in.
The bottom line?
That’s just what we’ve seen looking at fan activity in these places over the years. Does your personal network look different? Tell us about it in the comments, or on Twitter @UnionMetrics.
You’ll also notice we haven’t talked about fan activity on Pinterest, Snapchat, or live-streaming apps. How have you seen fans or fandoms using those?
Until now all of Netflix’s original programming has been binge-able; whole seasons released at once that fans park themselves to consume on the couch while they tweet about it. This changed with the recent release of Between, a show developed in partnership with a Canadian channel that follows the traditional one-new-episode-released-per-week formula. Episodes air on City TV in Canada then become available on Netflix several hours later.
How this affects the conversation
As expected, the biggest spike in Twitter conversation around Between so far in terms of the number of people tweeting and the subsequent reach of their tweets was the day the first episode was released, May 21st, followed by a second, smaller spike the day the second episode was released, May 28th: The most tweets, however, came the day after each episode aired:
And nearly all of the most retweeted tweets came from the show’s star Jennette McCurdy:
— Jennette McCurdy (@jennettemccurdy) May 29, 2015
Or from Netflix’s Twitter account:
— Netflix US (@netflix) May 21, 2015
What does this tell us?
Although the overall numbers for this show are lower than around Game of Thrones or fellow Netflix original Daredevil, that’s to be expected for a small, original show without a fanbase to draw on from previous seasons (GoT) or a successful comic book universe (Daredevil, part of the Marvel Universe). It does, however, have star Jennette McCurdy’s existing fans to draw on; those who grew up watching her on iCarly or Sam and Cat are older and excited to see her take on a darker, more serious role in this sci-fi show, so it makes sense that she’s promoting her latest project to her fans and followers on Twitter, encouraging them to tune in when it’s available and even offering to tweet with her fans while they watch.
The episodes become available on Netflix at 11:30pm Eastern, which explains why more tweets around the show are made the next day; fans might be tweeting about their excitement around the latest episode the day it airs, then discussing it or live-tweeting a second viewing (or a first, if they have an early bedtime) the day after it originally airs on Canada’s City TV.
The overall success of a serialized television show on Netflix vs a binge-able one remains to be seen, but they’re doing everything on the social promotion front right on Twitter, including show-specific hashtags and live-tweeting hashtags:
They could be doing a little more on other networks where their target audience has a presence: Instagram, for example. The official Netflix Instagram account has one photo referencing the show vs. much more promotion for their other original series (Marco Polo, Orange is the New Black, Daredevil, etc) , but this likely has to do with the City TV partnership and the fact that City has established their own Instagram profile for the show. Netflix could still use a third-party app to do some re-gramming, however.
The prevalence of the second screen and social television have been established for some time now, but how does the conversation differ around a show when the whole season is released at once and the audience has the option to binge-watch it all in one go?
We looked at the Twitter conversation around Netflix’s recently released Daredevil to find out.
The overall conversation
345.5k tweets have been posted about Netflix’s latest original series since the beginning of April, from 137.5k contributors, for a total unique reach of 76.2 million. That’s smaller than the few days of Twitter conversation around the fourth season premiere of Game of Thrones on Twitter, but consider that Game of Thrones was working with an established fan base and audience who were anticipating the season premiere. Daredevil does have an existing fanbase from the success of other Marvel projects, Netflix originals, and of course the original comic book character to draw from, but new shows still have to prove themselves and the social conversation is becoming an increasing part of that success. Netflix and Marvel know that, so their Twitter accounts are at the forefront of the conversation, along with two of the show’s stars, Rosario Dawson and Deborah Ann Woll if you take a look at the top contributors to the Daredevil conversation:
- Rosario Dawson
- Deborah Ann Woll
- THR (The Hollywood Reporter)
And these accounts consequently have some of the most popular tweets (by retweets):
— Daredevil (@Daredevil) April 9, 2015
As expected Game of Thrones chatter only got louder as the season progressed as each episode was released in the traditional serialized manner. With a show available all at once, what do we see? The answer that the biggest spike in the conversation happened on April 10th, the day Netflix released the full season, probably does not surprise you:
The day of release
Netflix releases new shows at midnight Pacific Time (3am Eastern) on Fridays (weekend timing makes it perfect for binge-watching), and announces that move with a tweet:
Which coincided with a spike in the conversation for that day, too:
As for the conversation itself, there was some self-aware humor around binge-watching reflected in some of the most retweeted and other prominent tweets:
#Daredevil doesn’t have “previously on…” montages because they know you just watched the previous episode 19 seconds ago.
— Scott Weinberg (@scottEweinberg) April 11, 2015
— E! Online (@eonline) April 10, 2015
As well as good old-fashioned jokes that only make sense if you’re familiar with the main character— or start watching the show to be in on it:
Mashable and Netflix even brought Twitter’s new live-streaming sister app, Periscope, into the conversation by using it to discuss why you should binge-watch the show and to bring fans behind-the-scenes content:
— Netflix US (@netflix) April 3, 2015
A Periscope URL wound up being one of the top URLs in the overall conversation, alongside articles around the show (like the one from Entertainment Weekly in the tweet posted above) and a Netflix link to the show itself. Something for brands- and perhaps especially for entertainment brands- to take into consideration as part of a promotional content marketing plan.
Whether or not you’re an entertainment brand or have anything to do with social television and the second screen at all, you still want to maximize your social listening. Daredevil caught criticism for being a show about a blind superhero that was released without a way for visually impaired fans to fully enjoy it. Netflix heard this, however, and several days later an audio description track was added for the show, along with news that the service would be expanded to its other original series.
That’s taking a blunder, really listening to your fans and followers, and fixing it in a timely manner that results in good PR.
That’s an excellent lesson for any brand.
Do you binge-watch series? Do you tweet about it? Leave your thoughts in the comments!
It’s Friday, so that means it’s time for This Week in Social Analytics and our favorite posts of the past week in the world of measurement, analytics, and social media. See a great piece we missed? Link to it in the comments, or tell us about it on Twitter or Facebook.
Twitter and social television:
10 Secret #Twitter Tips, Tricks and Hacks (That You Probably Don’t Know) [from AllTwittr; written by Shea Bennett]
A good list of tips and tricks to browse, even if you’ve been on Twitter for years.
“. . .it’s also important to remember that prospective customers aren’t really interested in you singing your brand’s praises on Twitter. What they are looking for, however, and why they report they follow SMBs on Twitter is to learn about new products, show support for products and brands they already love and to get information they can use. Keep that in mind as you’re crafting your social media strategy and the content you create and share in social media channels. This research may be specific to Twitter, but I’d guess it can easily be extrapolated across other social media channels as well.”
“As video becomes more fluid online, social engagement will become essential to finding and retaining loyal viewers for a show, as some have even said, social media is the new TV guide.”
Six ways social media is changing the nature of TV forever [from Econsultancy; written by Juliet Stott]
“Social media and social TV are two of the reasons why watching live TV is still so strong, says MTV Finland’s executive producer.
‘People cannot miss the show when it comes on air because they would miss the conversation – it’s part of the draw,’ says Rasimus.”
Instagram and Pinterest:
Integration (social buttons on your site and cross-posting Instagram images to other social networks where you have a presence) is a key strategy in this list. After all, if your customers don’t know you’re on a platform, how can they follow you there?
Instagram Grows As Teens’ Social Network of Choice [from Marketing Charts; written by staff]
“Roughly three-quarters of respondents reported using the visual platform, up from 69% in the previous survey.”
The profile of Pinterest users [from We Are Social; written by Deniz Ugur]
“. . .almost two-thirds of users are in 16-34 age bracket and there are more women than men on the platform.”
Click through for the full infographic.
On digital storytelling and marketing psychology:
Harness the Power of Negativity Bias for Positive Marketing [from SHIFT Communications; written by JJ Samp]
“Your ability to resonate with your audience is enhanced by the finesse with which you can identify negative sentiment and gracefully associate it with a positive message.”
Baratunde Thurston on How to Make Digital Storytelling Fun [from Social Media Today; written by Mary Ellen Egan]
“. . .Baratunde emphasized the importance for companies to match their brand and their mission to their digital stories. If stories come off as inauthentic or tone deaf, consumers will revolt.”
Click through to watch the full video of his presentation.
Finally, some bonus stats on holiday shopping expectations:
Survey: Social Media To Influence Half Of Holiday Shoppers from Marketing Land and 41 percent of shoppers plan to spend more online this holiday season from Marketing Pilgrim.
It’s Friday, so that means it’s time for This Week in Social Analytics and our favorite posts of the past week in the world of measurement, analytics, and social media. See a great piece we missed? Link to it in the comments, or tell us about it on Twitter or Facebook.
Looking to go in a new direction with your next campaign? Use these examples to inspire.
The Highest Converting Images to Use on Social Media Networks [from Social Media Today; written by Jesse Aaron]
The right image can make all the difference in catching your audience’s attention.
Why It Might Be Time to Completely Change Your Social Media Strategy [from Convince & Convert; written by Jay Baer]
“In the shotgun approach, you don’t worry as much about building a big audience in any particular network, but instead building a touchpoint corral around each of your customers and fans. The holy grail isn’t one million Facebook fans, but being connected to each of your fans in as many places as possible. The more places you are connected to your customers and fans, the more places you have permission to contact them, the greater the chances that you will actually be able to contact them somehow, somewhere.“
A Social Media Contest, Cole Haan, Pinterest, and the Rules [from Spin Sucks; written by Gini Dietrich]
While this happened a while ago, it’s a good reminder that brands need to know the rules before launching a campaign on a new platform. No one wants to be the one that gets made an example of by the FTC.
Want more on Pinterest? Here’s 7 Ways to Make Your Video Stand Out on Pinterest and The secret to Pinterest: no faces and new heights [Infographic].
“In the B2B realm, there are a few common areas that are always useful, and some information that is only useful in specific circumstances. Here’s the down-low on what you should consider when building your buyer persona.”
This piece covers 6 Twitter Community Structures Simplify Your Work; below is the Brand Cluster Twitter Structure:
“High visibility, popular brands and celebrities attract large Twitter followings who tweet, comment and share information about them. BUT followers have NO connection to each other.”
These communities tend to have large or very large followings but little connection between all of the accounts that make up the following. Also:
“It’s interesting to note that…Brand Cluster Twitter Communities do very little of their own tweeting.”
Click through for some actionable marketing tips around this Twitter community structure. Also great from Heidi this week: 7 Tactics For Content Curation Success.
“Snapchat, Tumblr and Pinterest ‘have the potential to change the way the industry thinks about real-time marketing,’ said Kevin Lange, Starcom MediaVest Group’s svp of social.”
“One of the most well-developed marketing plans in the industry, the marketing campaign for True Blood is a four-part ongoing project. The online campaign features strategic blogger outreach and behind-the-scenes footage and interviews. HBO most excels in maintaining the True Blood image throughout multiple platforms: the show recently created a blog for one of the ‘newly-turned’ vampires.”
Comedy Central now takes requests for its online, sketch series CC: Social Scene, hosted by comedian Paul Scheer. Twitter users can use the hashtag #CCSocialScene to make suggestions based on each week’s topic for a chance to have it included in the next sketch.
This use of a hashtag on Twitter is a natural social extension of the interactive nature of improv and sketch shows at most comedy clubs, taking suggestions from the audience for upcoming scenes. While the episodes haven’t been shared across platforms yet, doing so would maximize exposure to reach each part of their audience where they prefer to spend their time, still drawing them back to Twitter if they wish to participate.
Executing that would make this an excellent example of a cross-platform campaign.
Want tips for running one of those yourself? Check out 3 dos and don’ts for making it work.
We’re three episodes into the fourth season of Game of Thrones on HBO and the talk has certainly not died down since the premiere and just keeps growing: 845.5k tweets have been posted from 420.7k contributors for a unique reach of 141.7 million users, all around the show and its latest season, since April 6th. (That’s 500k+ more tweets, 20ok+ more contributors and nearly 30 million more unique accounts reached since our last post!)
While actress Sophie Turner’s tweet is still in the top three most retweeted around the show’s conversation, the announcement of being renewed for two more seasons from the show’s official account has taken the number one spot with over 12k retweets:
— Game Of Thrones (@GameOfThrones) April 8, 2014
Followed closely by another of the show’s official tweets:
— Game Of Thrones (@GameOfThrones) April 8, 2014
Top tags continue to be those promoted and supported by the show’s brand (and they now include #purplewedding for events from the second episode) and the show’s Twitter account is the top contributor to the conversation, followed closely by entertainment brands- @peoplemag, @RollingStone, and @MTVnews - supporting and spreading GoT talk to interested fans and followers. These accounts share a mix of show recaps, behind-the-scenes interviews with cast members, and even some fan RTs; all great supporting materials to HBO’s own Game of Thrones Viewer’s Guide.
HBO’s heavy involvement in the show’s fandom online illustrates the balance brands need to strike in social television: Give the people what they want in terms of special, behind-the-scenes access and places to discuss the show and characters that they love, and work to add to the conversation with hashtags and resources without dominating it. HBO is nailing it.