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Nielsen Twitter ratings show big growth in tweets about live TV

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People in the marketing and media industry will have been waiting for this for a long while. Nielsen has released its first Twitter TV ratings and the results show that 19-million unique people in the US composed 263-million tweets about live TV in the second quarter of 2013, a 24% year-over-year increase in authors and a 38% increase in tweet volume.

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An initial analysis of the research also suggests that the Twitter TV audience for an average episode is 50 times larger than the authors who are generating tweets. For example, if 2 000 people are tweeting about a program, 100 000 people are seeing those tweets. Of course there is variation in this number across programmes, with Nielsen saying the early data shows that the ratio of the audience to the authors generally decreases as the number of authors for an episode increases.

This, it says, is due to the increasing overlap of followers for shows with a large number of Twitter authors, where a single follower is increasingly likely to follow multiple authors.

The research outfit responsible for these numbers is called Social Guide – part of NM Incite, a joint venture between Nielsen and McKinsey, and will also produce a weekly top 10 TV ratings list.

The Twitter TV ratings metric was first announced back in December 2012. In February meanwhile, the social network bought Bluefin Labs in an apparent bid to provide its own TV metrics.

The results of the study should provide crucial data as Twitter looks to beef up its advertising revenue in the run up to its IPO.

Here’s an inforgraphic detailing Nielsen’s findings:

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