Welcome to the second-ever weekly Top 10 Most Tweeted Brands chart (look for it each Friday), a collaboration between Advertising Age and What The Trend, the social-media trend-analytics service. For this week's chart we decided to exclude Twitter-born quasi-brands -- like its #nowplaying and #followfriday hashtags trends -- mainly because we're sick of them. (If we'd left them in, though, they'd be, respectively, Nos. 1 and 3, with Valentine's Day, which we're also sick of, at No. 2.) Which leaves unavoidable teen pop star Justin Bieber as the biggest celebrity brand -- or brand of any sort -- on Twitter this week.
The Olympics come in just behind Bieber, but it's worth noting that star Olympic athletes invariably flamed out pretty quickly on Twitter; the likes of Shaun White and Johnny Weir simply didn't have the staying power to make our list (though we did, of course, count tweets about their Olympic exploits toward the total number of tweets about the Olympics). If you're a basketball fan, you know why the NBA is in the No. 3 spot (if you're not, see the crowdsourced explanation below), and if you're a pop-music fan and/or British, the Brits making the Top 10 (at No. 5) is no surprise. More music (the "We Are the World" charity single for Haiti and controversial rapper Nicki Minaj) and a Bollywood film (the blockbuster Fox Searchlight release "My Name is Khan") round out the list, with Microsoft's next-generation Windows phones making a respectable showing, and the iPad still, amazingly, holding on.
Brand trends making the Top 100, but not making our Top 10, include IBM (crowdsourced explanation: "IBM just released its Lotus software for the iPhone and has now turned its attention to the iPad") and P&G ("People are touched by a Proctor & Gamble commercial aired during the Olympics").
How is this chart made? See Notes, below.
|Trend||Peak Position This Week||Peak Position Last Week||Points||Crowdsourced Description|
|1||Justin Bieber||3||3||4,574||The young Canadian R&B/pop singer has a lot of fans who like to tweet about him. He is trending these days because his solo begins the new version of "We Are the World," a song for the relief efforts in Haiti.
Subtrends include: Justin Bieber, #iloveitwhenjustin, #BABYMusicVideo, #iLOVEJustinBecause, #becauseofbieber, #welovejustinbieber
|2||Olympics||1||6||4,393||People are tweeting on the 2010 Winter Olympic games in Vancouver, Canada.
Subtrends include: Shaun White, Vancouver, Johnny Weir, #van2010, Winter Olympics, Nodar Kumaritashvili, Olympics, Evan Lysacek, Gold, Apolo Ohno, Lindsey Vonn, Alexandre Bilodeau, Mike Robertson, Georgian, Maelle Ricker, Canadian, Swiss, Wayne Gretzky, Torah Bright, Plushenko, Nordic Combined, Kristina Groves, KD Lang, Sven Kramer, Snowboard Cross, #shaunwhite, Team Canada, Shani Davis, Jenn Heil, Nelly Furtado, Peter Pan, Canadians, Joni Mitchell, Slovakia, Zhao, Sidney Crosby, Switzerland, Seth Wescott, NBC, Hallelujah, Scott Hamilton, Louie Vito, Oh Canada, Peru, Donald Sutherland, Solitude, Silver, China's Shen, Shen, Another Gold, Latvia, Russian
|3||NBA||1||1||2,693||NBA ALL-STAR Dallas 2010, and a few incidental games throughout the week (Lakers in particular). The game was played at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Most other All-Star events occurred at the American Airlines Center in Downtown Dallas.
Subtrends include: NBA, LeBron, #AS10, Lakers, Kobe, Nate Robinson, Cavs, #ABetterDunkContest, Melo, Alicia Keys, MVP, Steve Nash, Paul Pierce, This Shakira, Kevin Durant, Brandon Jennings, Rondo, Dallas, Charles Barkley, East, Kevin Martin, Eric Gordon, Shaq, Bron, Horse, Alicia's, Now Alicia Keys, Worst Dunk Contest, Shakira, Skills Challenge, Dwight Howard, Slam Dunk Contest
|4||Google Buzz||3||1||1,940||Google Buzz is Google's response to Facebook/Twitter and is integrated into Gmail. Some are concerned about their privacy while using the service.
Subtrends include: Google Buzz, Google Buzz Has, Here's How, Integrate Facebook, Buzz, We May Remove Buzz, Your Gmail, Annoyed With Buzz In
|5||BRITs||1||New||1,580||The biggest music award show in the U.K. aired Tuesday night (on ITV) with performances by Lady Gaga (who offered a tribute to fashion designer Alexander McQueen) and many more artists. Comedian Peter Kay was the host.
Subtrends include: BRITs, JLS, Lady GaGa, Peter Kay, Brit Awards, Florence, #goodluckjls, Robbie Williams, Cheryl Cole, Liam Gallagher, Prince Harry
|6||We Are the World||1||New||1,500||"We Are The World: 25 For Haiti" unites many of music's biggest names, including Wyclef Jean, RedOne and Quincy Jones, giving the 25-year-old charity song a new feel. Debuted on the first night of the Winter Olympics.|
|7||Windows Phone 7||2||New||1,074||People are tweeting about Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer unveiling the next generation of Windows phones.
Subtrends include: Windows Phone 7, Microsoft
|8||MNIK||3||3||959||Bollywood film "My Name is Khan." Getting rave reviews from critics and audiences.|
|9||#becauseofnickiminaj||1||New||826||People are explaining/blaming things that are now acceptable to do because of @NICKIMINAJ -- Rap's new bad girl, Nicki Minaj, known for her hardcore lyrics about sex, money, drugs and female empowerment.|
|10||iPad||4||1||462||As we're perhaps about a month away from the official release of Apple's iPad tablet, there is a lot of chatter about apps, iBooks and DRM.|
1. WTT tracks the appearance of topics on the Twitter Trending Topics list and each week ranks the brands (broadly defined to include marketers, products and celebrity/entertainment brands) with the most cumulative staying power. Explanations of trends are solicited from WTT users, Wikipedia-style; a community-voting system is designed to highlight the best explanations while burying lame or prank explanations.
2. For the purposes of this chart, we collect and process data until 12 midnight EST on Thursday night before each Friday's publication.
3. We broadly define "brands" to include major marketers (e.g., Apple) and branded products (e.g., iPad), as well as celebrity and entertainment brands (e.g., Lady GaGa, American Idol). Ad Age works with WTT to consolidate multiple threads of brand chatter (e.g., Apple, iPad, iTampon, Apple Tablet) into one position on the chart when it's clear related Twitter conversations are basically all about the same topic, even if they use different keywords.
4. In WTT's proprietary trend-tracking system, points are awarded for both duration and rank in the top 10 trending topics on Twitter. The longer the duration, and the higher the overall rank, the more points are awarded. Measurements are taken in five-minute increments.
5. The crowdsourced trend explanations above are quoted as they appear on WTT, and therefore may have stylistic and grammatical quirks that don't adhere to normal Ad Age editorial standards.
For more information about What The Trend, visit the WTT Frequently Asked Questions.
Simon Dumenco is the "Media Guy" media columnist for Advertising Age. You can follow him on Twitter @simondumenco.