Social Media and Your Favorite TV Shows

Social Media is popular.  TV shows are popular.  So, I got to wondering, what commonalities can be gleaned from comparing social media to television.  According to the website By the Numbers the top rated TV shows so far for May 2010 are Dancing With the Stars, American Idol, Glee, NCIS, and the Mentalist.  Here’s how social media compares:

  1. Dancing With the Stars – Social Media can make us feel like we are “Dancing With the Stars”.  Especially on social networks like Twitter and Facebook, these social realms can make us feel like we are interacting to some degree with our favorite stars and brands.  Young fans can hear what Justin Bieber is doing at any given moment.  We can see by Ashton Kutcher’s Tweets that he just went to the dentist.  Fans of Starbucks can be the first to get a notice about the latest coffee coming out.  It is a level of “interaction” that just a few years ago we could only get from reading the tabloids or favorite celebrity magazine.
  2. American Idol – Twitter and Facebook can make us feel like an American Idol. Social networks give everyone the ability to be a publisher.  Control is now with each individual user as to how much information, content, and branding they want to put out for people to view.  Doing a good job of this can make you/your company into or at least make you feel like the next American Idol in your own right.  Social networking users can foster thousands of Twitter followers and hundreds of Facebook fans.  I once heard from someone, “Twitter makes you feel more popular than you really are”, which may be true, but don’t all of us need that little boost that makes us feel popular every day?  Just like American Idol, social media also gives people the ability to “vote” for products and people that they like the best.  Facebook Open Graph is a tool that Facebook just integrated so that users can “like” websites and products across the web and it will be documented in their Facebook profile.  It also personalizes the experience for the Facebook user showing the user results based upon what they have specified they like through their Facebook account.  Lastly, social media gives us the ability to literally become a star.  There have actually been new stars found through videos on YouTube.  This was the case for the above-mentioned Justin Bieber.  He was on Oprah yesterday with a girl named Charice who was discovered in part by YouTube and plucked out of the Philippines.  Charice‘s new album is currently number four on iTunes due to YouTube and a healthy dose of the “Oprah Effect”.
  3. Glee – Besides the obvious comparison that Glee is a word for happy and social media can make you happy (hey, one blog author even said that social media is better than making love), social media is also like Glee because everyone can be a team player.  In the end, social media is all about building relationships and connecting with people.  You can form online communities around people who have similar interests to you.  Just like the Glee high school, you can form a group talking about cheerleading with all of your cheerleading friends.  You can follow a Twitter list of people talking about little league baseball, because your son plays and you are interested in what these people have to say about that topic.  Find people who are different than you and connect on shared topics of interest via Twitter.
  4. NCIS and The Mentalist– Just like NCIS and The Mentalist, social media can be a great tool to investigate what customers and potential customers are saying about your product/service.  Use social media to listen to what people you have never met think and then tailor your business message to fit.  Use Facebook as a listening tool to see what customers and potential customers are saying about your product or business.  I saw Chris Brogan speak recently at Free State Social and as Chris would say, if you spend 2 hours a day on social media spend “30 minutes listening, 60 minutes connecting, and 30 minutes publishing.”  Answer their questions, solve their problems, and remedy any situations quickly and you will have loyal customers for life.

What are your favorite TV shows?  Do you have another parallel that wasn’t thought of above?

About the Author:  Jenny Russell is the owner of JenRus Freelance, Internet Marketing.  Jenny is available for speaking engagements and Internet Marketing questions.  Please feel free to contact JenRus Freelance, follow us on Twitter, or connect with us on Facebook.