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The Winter Olympics Are Snagging Viewer Emotion Gold

The 2018 Winter Olympics officially kicked off at the end of last week and so far viewers are absolutely loving it. B&C partnered with Canvs, the emotion measurement company, to see how viewers have been emotionally reacting to the Games thus far. Also below: advertising insights courtesy of iSpot.

From Feb. 5-11, Olympics programming on NBC and its sister networks has had seven out of the top 10 shows ranked by Emotional Reactions (ERs), and within the top five, only the NBA game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Boston Celtics rivaled Olympics broadcasts.

In fact, of the 2.7 million ERs in the last week, nearly 1.1 million of them were sparked by Olympics coverage — especially remarkable given that we’re only a few days into the Games. In fact, the Games are already starting to stack up impressively against the mighty social frenzy that is the Super Bowl. From Saturday through Monday on Super Bowl weekend, SBLII generated more than 3.3 million emotionally charged tweets; the Olympics are already a third of the way there and it doesn’t look like conversation will be slowing anytime soon:

As you’d expect, love has dominated the expressed emotions, appearing in 27.2% of ERs, followed by enjoyment (12.4%), excitement (7.2%) and crazy (6.4%).

One of the largest drivers of conversation has been the figure skating events, and 28-year-old figure skater Adam Rippon has been the most-mentioned individual athlete so far.

Meanwhile, in the advertising arena, according to, which has attention and conversion data from more than seven million smart TVs, Toyota, Chevrolet and Visa are among the top-spending brands so far.

Notably, General Electric has had the best success with getting audience attention so far: it snagged an iSpot Attention Index of 183, meaning its ads during the Games have had 83% fewer interruptions than average (interruptions include changing the channel, pulling up the guide, fast-forwarding or turning off the TV). Also winning with attention: Emirates (iSpot Attention Index of 179) and Farmers Insurance (176).