Social TV activities — that is, the use of social media platforms to discuss, comment on, or enhance the television experience — are quite common among today’s connected consumers. TDG’s latest research indicates that more than half (55 per cent) of adult social network users chat with their friends about TV shows at least a couple of times per year, while 35 per cent do so monthly, and 19 per cent do so daily. And these TV-centered interactions are not lost on network executives, who are well aware of how their shows are doing according to the various social TV ratings services.

But while social TV interactions have to date been primarily fan-driven, they will increasingly take a backseat to interactions around paid placements made by the TV networks. Alan Wolk, TDG senior analyst and author of the new report, argues that Facebook will be the primary beneficiary of this shift. “It already enjoys a much larger user base than other platforms, and it is the only platform with census-level user numbers. This will spur TV networks to put a majority of their social media dollars into Facebook, which has five times the user base and a much wider demographic reach than Twitter.”