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Which New TV Shows Also Have the Top Twitter Stars?

Networked Insights Looks at the Stars Who Can (Hopefully) Drive the Conversation

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Last week in a post titled "Forget Network Promises: Social Media Has Already Made Its Upfront Verdicts," Ad Age Media Editor Nat Ives served up preliminary rankings of the "most social" new shows coming to TV, using data from Networked Insights, a social-media analytics company that advises brands and agencies on media planning.

Today we're drilling down into one aspect of the data: the extent to which the talent starring in all these new shows may or may not be able to drive social conversation. After all, in many ways just about any new show (except a spin-off) has to start from scratch from a social-media perspective; nobody will be following a new show's official Twitter account until word gets out about its handle. But some shows get a head start thanks to stars who are already big in social media, like comedian Dane Cook, coming to NBC this fall. More on him -- along with other comments and insights -- below the infographic.

Top Tweeters Chart

  • "Over the last season," says Sean Reckwerdt, lead analyst and cultural anthropologist at Networked Insights, "there has been a noticeable correlation between successful shows and shows whose casts have a strong Twitter presence -- like Fox's 'New Girl,' starring Zooey Deschanel, who has more than 2 million followers on Twitter." Deschanel had a thriving indie-movie career and a devoted fan base before she moved to television. Last November, she already had more than 800,000 followers; she doubled that number by February. "Now that the upfronts have passed," Reckwerdt adds, "we're tracking the potential of socially active actors and trying to figure out if this correlation is slowly becoming the secret formula to a strong show premiere."
  • Dane Cook, star of NBC's "Next Caller," has by far the most Twitter followers -- more than 2.8 million -- of anyone carrying a new series. "In fact," says Reckwerdt, "he has more than 22 times more followers than the average actor in all the new shows."
  • Shows that are comedies tend to have more active tweeters than dramas.

Simon Dumenco is the "Media Guy" columnist for Advertising Age. You can follow him on Twitter @simondumenco. You can follow Networked Insights on Twitter @NetInsights.

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