Talent Powers TV’s Social Media Engagement: Nielsen

Talent drives engagement when it comes to posts from social media accounts owned by TV shows and networks.

According to Nielsen, which earlier this year started measuring Owned Account Performance as part of its Nielsen Social Content Ratings talent accounts generated almost 20 million engagements for their associated TV programs.

That represents about 30% of all owned engagement for series and special programming.

For a three-week period during this year’s fall series premieres, Nielsen Social Content Ratings measured over 160,000 pieces of TV content and over 250 million engagements coming from thousands of active owned accounts.

Findings within this time frame emphasize the impact that different owned account types can have across the major social platforms when engaging with their TV audiences.

The TV celebrities with the most social media engagements in comedy shows were Kristen Bell of NBC’s The Good Place, Issa Rae from HBO’s Insecure and Tim Allen from Fox’s Last Man Standing.

Among stars of dramas, Taraji P. Henson of Fox’s Empire had the most social media engagement, followed y Josh Dallas from Manifest on NBC and Emily Andreas from Wynonna Earp on Syfy.

In reality, the top stars were Tyra Banks of America’s Got Talent, Joe Amabile of ABC’s Dancing with the Stars and Howie Mandel of America’s Got Talent. 

Chris Hayes of MSNBC had the mos social engagement among news personalities, followed by Jake Tapper on CNN and Kate Pavlich of Fox News.

Talent accounts are particularly concentrated on Twitter. When it comes to talent for TV shows, 63% of their social media accounts are on Twitter. With athletes, Twitter accounts for 84% of accounts.

For programs, 39% of social media accounts were on Twitter with 37% on Facebook and 24% on Instagram. For networks, 41% of accounts are on Twitter, 34% on Facebook and 24% on Instagram.

Individual-level accounts for talent and athletes have higher shares of their engagement coming from Twitter than do the organization-level account types—56% of talent account engagement and 53% of athlete account engagement came from Twitter alone.

While Instagram represents roughly an equal share of engagements for network, program and talent accounts, it accounts for the vast majority of engagements for organization-level sports accounts with 88% of engagements for sports league accounts and 66% for team accounts, according to the report.

“Knowing how specific TV talent and program-associated accounts are performing across social media platforms opens up countless opportunities for programmers,” says Sean Casey, president, Nielsen Social. “Measuring a social media account’s impact is no longer a mystery. Now, TV talent, as well as the networks themselves, can quantify their account’s 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.” 

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.