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Social TV: Media + Conversation

Social TV: Media + ConversationRealizing they’re arriving a little late to this party, entertainment marketers are scrambling to find new ways to join the social media event. From awards shows to the upcoming Superbowl, show check-ins via GetGlue and TV tagging with Shazam, their aim is to increase fan loyalty and audience viewership in order to [fingers crossed] see a positive ROI – but are they just spinning their wheels?

The one-Way Conversation:
TV Check-ins are popular and slowly sticking to the industry’s marketing plans. While offering value (of sorts), check-ins come up empty in other important areas. TV Tagging is fun and also offers value through exclusive video, playlists and the like. Games are interactive and offer competition among fans. Twitter and Facebook community destinations are commonplace. Google+ and Pinterest are gaining steam, and hashtags grace the bottom of nearly every television screen these days.

Steps in the right direction? Yes. These are tools to target your audience. These are great ways for your audience to interact with each other. They are not ways to engage in conversation. This is what your audience craves – a conversation… with you.

Integration and the Two-way Conversation:
Entertainment marketers have proven to be fairly good students in the rapidly changing world of social and digital media. There’s something they’re just not getting. It’s fair to note that it isn’t just the entertainment industry missing this point. Even early social media adopters miss the “conversation” opportunity. Here’s what they’ll need to get started:

1) Take a Risk… Be Creative

It’s hard to believe that an industry in the business of make-believe lacks imagination. Whether it’s a lack of education about social media or fear of investing the time, money and resources, it’s inexcusable. This is television’s moment. It’s do or die – literally.

2) Integrate – Engage – Interact

Thank you, television, for allowing us – your loyal audience – to tweet about you during your show. Why isn’t anyone tweeting back? Hello? Is anyone out there?

Networks must find ways to integrate social channels into their broadcasts, engage in real time, and encourage audience interaction. We are here. We are waiting.

3) Knowledge is Power

Let’s be honest, this is a massive undertaking. Television networks are not small. Programming is 24/7. This is not your father’s entertainment marketing. Hire knowledgeable leadership. Build passionate teams.

Listen. Learn. Create. Connect. Respond. Repeat.

Social media is capable of saving TV. It’s doing a pretty darn good job on its own, but it could use a little help. Television’s future is bright considering it could have easily been lost to social media or replaced by the internet. The industry just doesn’t completely understand how to capitalize on social media…. yet.

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