When it comes to success on social media, TV ratings are just part of the overall picture, Shareablee Founder Tania Yuki said at New York Comic Con on Thursday.
Social media is playing an increasingly large role in the way networks evaluate shows’ success, and nothing drives social media engagement quite like Comic Con, no matter where it’s held.
While most comic-themed primetime series tend to be lacking in the Nielsen ratings (ABC’s Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD, Fox’s Gotham or The CW’s Riverdale and The 100, for example), these types of series are on the forefront at Comic Con, where passionate fans gather to celebrate the TV shows, movies, comic books, games and other pieces of pop culture that they love.
“What we were counting when we were comparing the audiences are all of the influences among the consumers who were reacting against any of the social networks, like Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to messages about Comic Con and anything around the hashtag,” said Yuki. “Basically anything that left behind a digital breadcrumb on social media about fan enthusiasm, interest and engagement regarding the event. And we looked at those two side by side around the same time period from when that edition of Comic Con was starting.”
In a charting based on total actions — which includes reactions, comments, shares, retweets and likes —from Jan. 1 to Sept. 20, 2017, AMC’s The Walking Dead, not surprisingly, is the top choice at 75.5 million total actions, according to Shareablee.
But second place goes to The CW’s Riverdale — based on the characters from the iconic Archie comic book franchise — at 25.1 million. This is in stark contrast to a lack of interest in the show indicated by Nielsen data and the main reason why The CW now is talking about spinning off a new series based on the title character from Sabrina, the Teenage Witch.
Third overall isThe Flash, which tops the traditional rating charts on The CW, but still pales in comparison to the majority of programs on any competing network. And fourth is Fox’s perennially low-rated Gotham at 9.6 million total actions.
“The only way you can get this kind of reach is if people are sharing your posts, and if I am a sponsor this is free media,” said Yuki. “This tells me that as long as I am partnering with the right kind of content, I am going to get access to all types of communities I don’t even think about. And they are going to keep sharing these posts, which will only add to the interest.”
“The great thing about looking at social data and going well into that data is you are getting the full picture and not just people who just turn into a measurement sample,” she added. “Social really does give you a bigger picture.”