Sunday evening’s pileup of prominent TV events – including the NFL Pro Bowl, the SAG Awards, the Miss Universe pageant and a WWE pay-per-view – pushed past all but one thing to fill up the week’s Twitter TV Top 10 ratings by Nielsen.
That one other thing, however, was President Obama’s State of the Union speech five days earlier, which easily attracted the most social-media conversation of the week, nearly 2,600 tweets that reached an unduplicated audience of more than 9.7 million people.
Obama no doubt stirred lots of online comment when he used the SOTU to throw a gauntlet in the collective face of the newly elected Republican majority in Congress, laying out an array of initiatives guaranteed to annoy his political opponents. That the speech was widely seen, and tweeted about, is no surprise; it was carried by all the broadcasters and several cable networks (enough that Nielsen just calls it a “TV event”).
But other than the president’s annual face-to-face-to-facedown with Congress, it was the confluence of big events on Sunday that really filled out this week’s Twitter Top 10s. On the series and specials side, the Miss Universe pageant and SAG Awards were Nos. 2 and 3, and WWE’s big Royal Rumble pay-per-view event was No. 5, behind that other weekly rumble, The Bachelor.
WWE got its Monday night USA show in the Top 10 series list as well, as per usual, while newcomer Empire on Fox continues to show its bona fides as a breakout hit on air and online.
Over on the sports side, even as the NFL prepares to end its season with this Sunday’s Super Bowl, its Pro Bowl (perhaps the least entertaining and edifying all-star game out there) topped the sports side top 10.
Is the NFL all powerful on TV and on social? Yes. Even the NFL Network’s show about “drafting” members of the Pro Bowl teams from earlier in the week ended up sixth overall on the series and specials list. The draft show sparked the week’s second-fewest number of posts, yet still reaching 2.5 million people.
One college basketball game, featuring the remarkable record 1,000th career win by Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski, nabbed the No. 2 sports slot (again on Sunday), ahead of a string of NBA games (half of them on Sunday too) featuring notable franchises Oklahoma City, Chicago, Cleveland and Miami.
Also on the list, down at No. 8, was Sunday’s NHL All-Star Game, lost amid all the hubbub on seemingly every other channel. Someone needs to talk to the league’s scheduler.
As always, Nielsen provides lots of caveats to accompany its numbers, to wit:
Nielsen Social captures relevant Tweets from three hours before through three hours after broadcast, local time. Unique Audience measures the audience of relevant Tweets ascribed to a program from when the Tweets are sent until the end of the broadcast day at 5am. Sports Events include those on Broadcast and National Cable Networks only across all day parts. For multicast events, networks are listed alphabetically and metrics reflect the highest Unique Audience across all airing networks.