From TV Show to TV Brand

Yahoo! and Deep Focus have released the major findings from their survey of 2000 television viewers about how they use the internet to connect with TV shows and with what results. Among the key findings:

– A third of TV viewers go online to engage their favorite shows in addition to watching them on TV.

– Viewers over 35 see the TV show broadcast as “the main event” while those under 35 view it as just one piece of the TV show’s overall “brand” that also includes its online presence.

– 64% of information seeking activity about TV shows occurs BEFORE the show airs. Those who seek info online before a show are more likely to become regular viewers [I note that this is not surprising since these are the people most interested to begin with -- it's hard to argue from this finding that seeking information online causes increased viewing]

– People who seek information about a TV show pre-season “on average convince 5.1 of their friends to watch the show.” The people who are most likely to try to get others to watch a show are also much more likely to engage the show online.

Following up on my post about watching TV sports while logging on, the study also found that:

The most avid TV viewers tend to be into media meshing, with 65% of respondents reporting they search online for information about a TV show while they are watching it and 32% saying they keep a laptop within reach most of the time they are watching TV.

The report focuses on “using online search to find information about TV shows.” It is not clear whether they looked at things like posting to or reading discussion forums as different and interrelated activities. Either way, though, the study shows, yet again, the importance of the internet in facilitating, supporting, and expanding fan engagement. The conclusion they draw is applicable far beyond TV:

Understanding how viewers use online search to find information about TV shows, and how they engage with the content they find, is the first step in developing an online strategy that will transform your TV show into a TV brand.

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