Last week, Facebook gave TV networks and news sites access to its data through two new APIs: Keyword Insights and Public Feed. Though it launched with a small group of media partners, ABC’s Dancing with the Stars is the first TV show to significantly tap into the company’s wealth of social data.
In a newly arranged deal, the DWTS will display real-time conversations and feedback related to the show live on air. As Variety reported, the network will also be able to access hyper-targeted data from a specific geographic area, demographic, age group, and gender.
Similar to how NBC’s The Voice leverages Twitter reactions during its broadcasts, DWTS will be able to tell viewers during broadcasts if a contestant — like Bill Nye for example — is generating buzz with women in Chicago. Facebook’s APIs are able to take it a step beyond what Twitter offers, in fact.
The Public Feed API will let ABC view a real-time stream of public posts mentioning the show or a specific cast member. The Keyword Insights API will aggregate posts across Facebook that mention a certain topic and displays a breakdown of anonymous data on the age, location, and gender of members. The latter will likely offer more compelling stats for network execs.
While DWTS is the first partner in the entertainment space, Facebook data has been integrated into TV telecasts of other genres, including NBC’s Olympics events, CNN newscasts surrounding the presidential election, and Fox Sports’ college football broadcasts. The only thing different about these cases is that Facebook had to manually gather data, a process that has now been streamlined thanks to the new API tools.
Although the APIs haven’t been made available to everyone yet, tonight’s DWTS premiere is a good opportunity for other TV networks and media companies to see them in action.
Jennifer Beese: Jennifer Beese has worked as a community manager and social media strategist. When she’s not writing, you can find her studying anatomy and physiology—she literally has a skeleton in her closet—or under the stars with her telescope.