Rio Olympics: People Sharing News & Results on Social Media

Out of 81,000 consumer conversations, 46% involved people sharing news and results on Social Media. Commercial time during opening ceremony in Rio was down almost 19% from 2012 London Olympics. Viewership was down 35%.

So much for all the complaining about commercial overload during the opening ceremony of the Rio Olympics.

Surprise: The number of advertisements was actually down from the 2012 London Olympics.

During Friday night’s opening ceremony of the Games, viewers took to social media to voice their anti-advertising sentiments as many felt the broadcast was inundated with more ads than Olympians.

This year’s opening ceremony had 19% less ad time during the initial 4 ½ hours of coverage, according to Kantar Media. During that time, there were 54 ad spots, adding up to 33 minutes and 45 seconds of commercials. The opening ceremony ran half an hour longer this year, with an additional two NBC promos during the final half hour, according to Kantar Media.

So why were so many viewers upset about the volume of ads if, in fact, there were fewer? NBCUniversal’s argument is that consumers are less tolerant of ads generally than they were four years ago, when binge-watching shows on ad-free streaming services wasn’t as commonplace.

Consumers’ attitudes toward commercials wasn’t the only changing habit that the network had to contend with. Viewership of the opening night was down 35% from the record-setting audience for London’s opening ceremony in 2012, which attracted 40.7 million viewers, according to Nielsen.

NBC has said it sold more than $1.2 billion in national ads ahead of the Rio Games.

Networked Insights, a research firm that mines social media sites, said a good chunk of consumers’ conversations on social media during the opening ceremony and through the weekend revolved around the level of ad interruptions as well as the content of the broadcasts themselves.

Out of 81,000 consumer conversations, Networked Insights says that almost 46% involved people sharing news and results. But almost 11% were complaints about the frequency of the advertising, while about 27% of the posts were complaints about the coverage of the Olympics, such as a perceived U.S. bias or preference for human interest stories over actual athletic performances.

Full Article at WSJ

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