Social Tv - #SMWmilan Social Tv - #SMWmilan

Social Tv - #SMWmilan

When Social Networks connect with television

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As an audience, in various circumstances, we are now accustomed to no longer using services passively but actively. We are used to participating and expressing our opinions and ideas, and making ourselves heard.

Technology has now entered our life in a predominant way: rarely do we do activities on a daily basis without using at least one technological device. Even while we are watching TV, we very often have a smartphone in our hand to tweet or share a comment or criticism with the rest of the audience.

This has led to the creation of Social TV. When watching a TV series, an audience can interact via posts and comments with all other users who are sharing the same experience at the same time.

The “cradle” of Social TV, explains Kenyatta Cheese – Creative Director at Everybody at Once – has been the USA, where two screens have been used for some time: one for watching an event/programme and one for tweeting and posting. Social TV can be activated especially during sporting events such as the SuperBowl, or a TV series, which, in some cases, in addition to dedicated hashtags, have specific hashtags for single episodes.

What is the situation in Italy?

In Italy “something is happening, even though we are far from the American situation”, says Gianpaolo Colletti – Digital Storyteller at Sole24Ore. The TV audience has always been measured, but for some years now the audience of the audience has been measured. What does this mean?

The audience is beginning to become an active entity, not only passively by receiving a message but also by starting to intervene in the flow of information, which is re-handled and re-used.

Although we are still far from the global scenario, real communities are being created. “We must convince broadcasters to invest in order to create user profiles “to link up””, explains Matteo Cardani – Deputy General Marketing Manager at Publitalia ’80

Two real-life experiences

Back in 2004, we involved people in order to do an advertising campaign about Gandhi. People need to be reached and to do this in the best possible way, we need to get them to participate in the project”, says Carlotta Ventura - Group Senior Vice-President of Brand Strategy & Media at Telecom Italia.

The job of those in television has not changed over the years, but it has developed: for example, whereas previously with the campaign about Gandhi, people wrote on a website and after just 12 hours comments could be published in a newspaper, today, thanks to technology, people’s opinions are immediately available and can be spread in just 12 seconds.  The difference today is time, television times have changed, as well as audience reaction times.

Two important projects have been created for TIM, based on using Social Networks in conjunction with TV:

  • #TIMRACE: users can interact during Moto GP races. Starting from a sporting event with high emotional engagement, the attention of users is attracted in order to enhance social network users
  • #TIMSTADIUM: similar to the above, but in this case the events involving high emotional engagement are Serie A football matches.

It is important to point out the fact that, unfortunately, in Italy “out of 3-4 million viewers, only 1% is active”, says Matteo Cardani, therefore the segment of the audience that is actually active is a clear minority compared to the rest. We must not forget, however, that the remaining 98% comprise the word-of-mouth channel, which is always useful for spreading and sharing with others.

To involve an audience, it is therefore necessary to start with something that interests. It is necessary to know the type of audience, its tastes and passions. To involve the non-active part, it is surely necessary to start from the segment of so-called “superfans” so that they can becomemakers in order to reach the inactive part. In this way, they carry out two important functions: they interact and share their interaction