Press Room

Social TV audience reach and engagement measured for the first time ever in Australia


SYDNEY: 17 NOVEMBER, 2014 – For the first time in Australia, the audience reach of Twitter conversations about TV and engagement levels can be measured following today’s launch of Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings. Developed by Nielsen, a leading provider of insights into what people watch and buy, through an exclusive multi-year agreement with Twitter, this new measure will enable networks, agencies and advertisers to understand how audiences are reacting to TV shows and the reach of these conversations taking place on Twitter.

In October, more than one million (1.2M) Tweets relating to TV programs were sent by Australians, generating 97.5 million impressions (total number of times Tweets were seen). Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings for October 2014 show that the NRL Grand Final was the most socially engaged program, with 75,000 Tweets sent creating 8.4 million impressions. This was followed by V8’s – Bathurst 1000, then the finales of three reality TV shows – The Block Glasshouse, The Bachelor Australia and X Factor.

Scott Gillham, Head of Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings in Australia, said: “Social media is transforming the way viewers engage with TV as audiences share comments and opinions about their favourite shows in real time. Interestingly, social media conversation is also helping to drive TV audiences and creating a stronger demand for catch-up TV. Being able to measure and evaluate TV programs by their social engagement allows networks to better understand audience reactions to their programming, while offering advertisers and agencies another element in evaluating where to place media-spend and the impact of those placements in driving earned media.

“Early next year we will be releasing further information about what brands people are Tweeting about, offering insights about those highly engaged with TV and brands.”

Initial Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings findings indicate that sporting events are a significant driver of social media interaction, comprising 36 per cent of all TV-related Tweets. However, series type programing covers the largest portion counting for more than three in five Tweets. Within series the highest segments were reality shows (20%), current affairs (20%), news (16%) and drama (6%) programs driving TV-related Tweets.

Commenting on the introduction of Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings, Sarah Keith, Network Ten Head of Research, Analytics and Inventory Management, said: “Watching TV has long been a social activity and social media platforms have extended interactions beyond the living room. Online connections are influencing not only what programs people to choose to watch, but also when they watch. We believe Nielsen TV Twitter Ratings are a vital next step in quantifying this activity and interaction.

“Ten’s ambition is to be number one in Social TV, which we define as the union of TV and Social Media creating engagement, conversation and interaction between followers, viewers and brands. This new ratings system will help us continue to drive, track and most importantly measure both engagement and conversation around our programming.”

Recent US Twitter TV research* points to an emerging group of social brand ambassadors. The findings show that people who Tweet about brands and TV programs send three times as many Tweets about brands compared to those who only Tweet only about brands. These social brand ambassadors also have twice as many followers, indicating higher levels of influence. For advertisers looking to engage with audiences that share brand messages via social media, being able to understand what TV programs they engage with is extremely important.

Sydney-based Danny Keens, Global Chair of Television, Twitter, adds, “As audiences increasingly turn to Twitter to connect with TV shows and other fans, our TV partners in Australia have consistently asked for one common benchmark to measure the social engagement of their programming. Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings answers this request, and will complement current TV audience measurements.

“Twitter is the social soundtrack to TV today. Our platform is public, live and conversational, as well as widely distributed. Ultimately we hope Twitter will make TV more social, as engaging with other fans heightens the viewing experience. We also hope it will help create innovative new uses of the platform with broadcast partners.”

Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings is the first-ever measure of the total activity and reach of TV-related conversation on Twitter. Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings measure not only “authors”— the number of people Tweeting about TV programs — but also the much larger “audience” of people who actually view those Tweets.

About Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings

Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings is the first-ever measure of the total activity and reach of TV-related conversation on Twitter. Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings measure not only “authors”— the number of people Tweeting about TV programs — but also the much larger “audience” of people who actually view those Tweets.

  • Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings measures all programs across more than 100 Free-to-Air and Subscription TV Channels, providing:
  • Metrics of Activity and Reach for episode, program, network station.
  • Insight and ranking mentions of actors, cast/talent, athletes, sports teams.
  • Real-time monitoring of Authors and Tweets for every program on air.

Metrics include:

  • Unique Audience: The total number of distinct Twitter accounts accruing at least one impression of one or more different Tweets ascribed to a TV episode.
  • Impressions: Total number of times any Tweets related to a program were seen.
  • Unique Authors: Number of Twitter accounts that posted at least one Tweet about a program. 
  • Tweets: Number of Tweets related to a TV program.

Nielsen Holdings N.V. (NYSE: NLSN) is a global information and measurement company with leading market positions in marketing and consumer information, television, and other media measurement, online intelligence, mobile measurement, trade shows, and related properties. Nielsen has a presence in approximately 100 countries, with headquarters in New York, USA, and Diemen, the Netherlands. For more information, visit

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