Social TV is dead – long live Social TV.

Over the last several years, innovative broadcasters have set aside operating dollars to experiment with a new phenomenon – one which tries to marry linear TV with the very non-linear world of social media. “Social TV” executions (in its various forms) have been tried on the local and national level with varying degrees of success (which, itself, usually gets defined depending on which stakeholder you ask: viewer engagement, ratings lift, social presence and “stickiness” long after the event).

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The “Social TV” industry is evolving, and needs to, just as the linear TV industry is. Broadcasters want to get the “next big thing” to lure in a very connected, social savvy audience, and move away from “Social TV 1.0” executions: verbatim Tweets on screen, Instagram photos on a plasma monitor without context, simple “yes-no” polling.

The addition of production integration capabilities of Snapchat’s “Our Story” from Tagboard is one of the next steps the industry needs to take.  Tagboard also debuted the integration of content from Snapchat’s Spectacles, eyeglasses with built in wide-angle lenses designed to give Snapchat followers a first person perspective.

What’s novel about the execution is that the content moves from the smartphone directly to air, giving the medium a much larger audience of those who do not know about Snapchat or how it is used, or used well (yours truly included).

During April’s Billboard Latin Music Awards on Telemundo, social content was taken in and moderated (all very “Social TV 1.0,” but the difference is that the medium was Snapchat, and the content was Spectacles video).

Snapchat Spectacles Moderation. Source: Tagboard

Moderated elements were then made available on air, as part of what Tagboard called “Our Latin Billboard Story,” in a design matching the overall look and feel of the event.

The use of Spectacles gave a unique perspective to the proceedings and had a different feel than traditional smartphone video. Red Carpet walks had a live, “in the moment” pacing to them, backstage elements had a much more informal feel, and the very nature of the video that is produced from the Spectacles gives it a unique look that is instantly distinctive from traditional cameras, so the user-generated content feels like it enhances the production but does not compete with it.

Tagboard also handled the Facebook Live stream around the event, a very “Social TV 2.0” part of the process.  Broadcasters are looking for a complete social package and may not settle for just a single component in 2017.


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