A new study from Motorola Mobility confirms much
of what we have been reporting of late–that traditional TV
and social media are a natural partnership and that each
contributes to the success of the other.
The report finds that “consumer hunger for social media
connectivity and demand for entertainment “anytime,
anywhere” is driving the most dramatic industry
convergence in the last 20 years.” One of
the major trends, says the survey, is that
“digital entertainment and social media
enhance the traditional TV experience–
consumers are hungry for content and
American consumers watched 21 hours
of TV per week in 2011, up two hours from
last year alone. And a lot of that increase is
in on-demand TV–18% of viewing this year
compared to 5% in 2010. That’s nice, but if you are a TV
ad seller you prefer live viewing and the additional ratings
that generates.
There’s a way to encourage live viewing, says the study.
Offer “improved real-time experiences at the original airing
of the show,” says the report. “Deeper engagement with
the programming via an integrated social TV element can
provide viewers an incentivized reason to watch the initial
airing and engage with other fans immediately.”
More than half of the survey respondents said they have
already discussed a TV show on a social network and
another 49% said they would be interested in this type of
A number of TV station group owners are already
working to provide that, cooperating to develop a social
media element to all of their programs. Cable operators
and networks are also in the forefront of the trend.
Having a social media element also keeps the internet
off of the TV, to an extent. A greater percentage of the
persons surveyed by Motorola Mobility preferred to engage
in social media on their computers or smartphones while
watching TV rather than having an on-screen menu, 43%
to 40%.
These companion social media sites are obviously
advertising opportunities but they are also ways for clients
to sell merchandise. For instance, in the U.S., 34% of the
survey respondents said they would prefer a social TV
service that links through to sites to buy products featured
on the program.
The survey also found that 23% of viewers in the U.S.
currently watch mobile TV on their smartphones.
Consumers are interested in being connected at all times
and do not care about the technology, says the study.