Not long ago, we measured the success of a TV special by the number of viewers who tuned in. These days, it’s the number of social media comments that counts.
This year’s battle for top honors began with The Super Bowl. They pulled in an impressive 12.2 million SMC’s (Twitter, Facebook and other social networks combined) which put them up 578% over last year.
Then tragedy struck right before music’s biggest night and that led to a Grammy win with 13 million social media comments during the show. Hold on to your mouse, folks — that’s up 2,280% from last year.
Now, it’s Oscar’s turn and he’s taking social media very seriously.
It began with the official Oscars app which included a way to match your predictions to those of your Facebook friends. It also hooks users straight into the Academy’s massive library of video and written content, and the Oscar Buzz Twitter stream.
On Sunday, the app will give users an unprecedented look at the inner workings of the show via a dozen cameras in unusual locations. That means everyone has to be on guard from the second they hit the red carpet until they climb back into the limo after the event. The only thing missing here is a restroom cam!
The Academy is encouraging Tweeters by making mini-stars out of the social media mavens. Hosts will be accepting red carpet questions via Twitter and Oscar hashtags will feed into a continual stream on the official websites and the app. And though the members of the Academy don’t mind (read: are hoping for) some humorous snarking, they have a team of moderators ready to cull foul language and spam from the stream.
People are going to Tweet, post and text about the Oscars. By being pro-active and harnessing this energy, ABC and The Oscars have turned millions of viewers into personal ambassadors for the show. And every one of them is working for ABC free of charge.
Will movie fans beat out the sports fans? I’m betting on slightly over 13 million.