TV audiences discuss shows on Facebook in real time

Up to a quarter of TV audiences are commenting on the programmes they are watching on Facebook, with most of these being made while they are watching, according to a new white paper from social analytics firm SecondSync.

The report, Watching With Friends, is the first output from a partnership between the social networking giant and SecondSync, to analyse TV-related conversation over Facebook. The paper claimed that 60% of daily Facebook interactions about a TV show occur during the airing, as reported in Digital TV Europe.

“Viewers use posts to start conversations that cluster around events in the show. In turn, posts often seed huge volumes of comments and likes that have broader peaks of engagement, which are sustained for a much longer time period as friends continue discussions long after the show has aired,” according to SecondSync, which analysed discussion on the platform in the UK, US and Australia for the report.

The report also identified “distinct patterns of engagement” around different types of programmes – documentaries often generate high volumes of conversation in comments, engagement around dramas peaked at the end of the broadcast and posts around competition shows mapped directly to performances. Unsurprisingly 80 per cent of these interactions are taking place on a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet.

“This is the first in-depth analysis of Facebook’s social TV data across multiple territories, and the first time Facebook has released social TV analytics to the industry at this scale,” wrote SecondSync.

“The huge volumes of public conversations on Twitter have meant that until now social TV has largely been synonymous with one social network. SecondSync’s findings offer an additional perspective.”

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