Tweet TV: How Twitter Has Changed Our TV Watching Experience

By Dean Opriasa Social Viewing

Live TV viewing experience has certainly changed with the advent of social media. More shows are incorporating Twitter and Facebook to get a buzz going and increase engagement with viewers. 

Testaments to this are The Royal Wedding, The Oscars and other award shows. Twitter is starting to link to prime time entertainment, and as more and more shows integrate social media, it’s becoming a tool for bringing the audience back from time-shifted TV with recorded DVR shows to real-time viewing.

I recently live tweeted the #NBAFinals for a client and from my personal handle. I find it to be quite an enjoyable experience. I got really into it! I find it to be a nice complement to sports. I have a buddy who’s a big fan of Twitter because it’s a way to keep up with the NHL while he’s in Australia, where hockey isn’t as big. He says it’s as if he’s watching the game with his mates on the other side of the world!

Since Twitter surrounds sharing content, tweeting about what’s on TV is a quick way to connect with others with a common interest. (Plus, it gives you something to do during commercials!) You know when the shows are because they’re on the same time every week. The people interested and vested are in the same “place” at the same time.

A great example of Twitter enhancing the viewer’s experience is The Voice. Its commitment to social media has proved to be favorable with its increasing ratings. The Voice integrates social media in every aspect of the show. From the contestants urging fans to vote for them and asking them to weigh in on their outfits, to the judges tweeting themselves! According to billboard.biz, the freshman show’s June 7th episode generated 200,000 The Voice tweets, putting it just behind GLEE in social media engagement.

This interactive component, which allows you to tweet and see other tweets by people watching the show has added to an enhanced viewing experience.  You can now see what the host and other viewers think about certain events, and contribute your own views to the conversation on twitter.

Here are some tips for tweeting your fave show:

  1. Know the hashtags being used-There’s usually a specific hashtag that Tweeps use during the show (hint, it’s most likely the show’s name), use it in every tweet so others can follow.
  2. Engage with those who use the hashtag-Your friends are probably talking about the show so you’re engaging with them, but don’t forget to talk to other people who aren’t your followers!
  3. Check out what other Tweeps are saying- Weigh in on what others are saying!
  4. Keep it short and Re-tweetable.

With Twitter, we now are able to collectively experience TV like never before. TV used to be considered as a “passive” and even isolating form of entertainment. With social media, it’s become more social, interactive and fun! How many times did your parents yell at you to stop watching TV and go out and socialize with other kids. These days, you can do both! Essentially, you can even connect and “meet” other people.

Do you tweet during your favourite shows? If so, what shows?  Share your thoughts in the comments!