The four shows with the most digital engagement in January had no new episodes last month

While there is a place for both OTT and traditional delivery of TV shows, we are seeing a shift towards the streaming services of the world. According to Amobee Brand Intelligence, the top four shows with the most digital engagement in January were actually shows with no new episodes during that month. The highest engagement seems to happen when audiences are catching up on an old season or looking forward to the next.

Consumers want the option to binge-watch, and they want to do so on the device and medium of their choice. Audience’s preferences in how they consume their favorite TV shows is an important metric for both marketers and content creators- knowing the timing of when audiences are most involved with a particular show or series can help create effective, targeted ad campaigns.

  • Game of Thrones was the show with the most digital content engagement around it between January 1-25, 2016; with Doctor Who generating 83% as much digital content engagement. Game of Thrones rocked the internet with the not entirely unexpected news that George R.R. Martin wouldn’t be releasing the new Fire and Ice novel before the new season of the HBO show starts; while Doctor Who just announced that long time show runner Steven Moffat will be leaving after the upcoming season, likely meaning a new Doctor as well. The Walking Dead had 74% as much digital content engagement as Game of Thrones between January 1-25, while in the same time period, Making A Murderer had 69% as digital content engagement, and The X-Files had 64% as much digital content engagement as Game Of Thrones. Interest around The Walking Dead was primarily around the Valentine's Day return of the show, interest around Making A Murderer circled around the public debate of if Steven Avery was guilty or going to get a new trial or not; with The X-Files starting a new season on January 24 after the series last aired a new episode in 2002.
  • The data shows how nonlinear audience interaction around TV shows has become. Of the Top 10 shows that had the most digital content engagement so far in January, only 5 of the 10 actually aired new episodes in January. With Game of Thrones, Doctor Who, and The Walking Dead; the audience is looking towards the next season. With Making A Murderer and Fargo, the audience is still digesting content that was released during December. The X-Files, American Idol, The Simpsons, The Big Bang Theory and Downton Abbey were the only shows in the Top 10 that released new episodes in January, and in Downton Abbey’s case, the episodes were first airing in the US, but had already aired in England previously. Looking back, looking forward; looking at content being released in the present; audience engagement around their favorite shows is an ongoing conversation, not just revolving around a specific timetable around an in progress season.
  • All of the Top 10 shows with the most digital content engagement between January 1-25 were shows that debuted on cable or broadcast television, with Netflix’s Making a Murderer being the notable exception. At least in January, the digital audience is primarily interested shows with more traditional distribution models, as opposed to Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon originals.
  • The X-Files was the show airing an original episode between January 1-25, with the most digital content engagement around it; with The X-Files generating 0.3% more digital content engagement than American Idol in the same time period. That doesn’t mean The X-Files necessarily generated the highest same day TV ratings; though 13.5 Million people did tune into the January 24 episode; but it does indicated The X-Files has a loyal audience that is highly engaged around the returning show.
  • Doctor Who dates back to 1963, The Simpsons back to 1987 if you include The Tracey Ullman Show shorts; Game of Thrones existed as an I.P. in at least book form dating back to 1996; generally speaking to be a show generating Top 10 digital content engagement requires a library of content to discuss. Even Making a Murderer and Fargo have 1 completed season and 2 completed seasons respectively under the belts - it would be unlikely for a show in the middle of it’s first season to make the Top 10 list in terms of digital content engagement.

Shows With The Most Digital Engagement

Ranking of the TV shows with the most digital content engagement around them between January 1-25, 2016.

  1. Game of Thrones
  2. Doctor Who
  3. The Walking Dead
  4. Making A Murderer
  5. The X-Files
  6. American Idol
  7. The Simpsons
  8. The Big Bang Theory
  9. Downton Abbey
  10. Fargo

Amobee’s patented Brand Intelligence technology platform, analyzes and correlates over 60 billion content engagements and consumption trends across the digital ecosystem -- web, video, mobile, and social -- every day.

James Malins is a seasoned digital marketing executive with over a decade of experience in marketing technology. As VP of Cross Channel Solutions at Amobee, James oversees delivery and media strategy for the company’s global cross channel platform, powered by Amobee’s patented Brand Intelligence technology, which enables brands to engage audiences with the greatest effectiveness and relevancy using real time data.

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