Advocacy & Promotion

Study Reveals Correlation of Emotional Reactions to Genre-Specific Programming

Originally published on Twitter


Canvs worked with Twitter to investigate whether the emotions expressed in Tweets can provide any insight into audiences’ propensity to Tweet about more episodes. It should come as no surprise that the types of emotions expressed varied greatly across TV programming genres. We dove deep to see how Tweets about comedy, drama, and reality competition programs corresponded to social loyalty as defined by Nielsen (3+ Tweets per author per program season).


To better understand the way viewers use Twitter to enhance their TV experience, 204 seasons were analyzed between September 1, 2014, to May 31, 2015. Canvs’s proprietary Emotional Reactions and Emotional Reaction Rate data were analyzed across comedies, dramas, and reality competition shows for insights.

Key findings


Comedy Programming
For comedy programming, any emotional response is a good response. Canvs found that the share of Emotional Reactions among total Tweets correlated with loyalty, suggesting that moving from factual viewing statements and quotes to Emotional Reactions could relate to increases in loyalty.



Drama Programming
Within drama programming, Crazy and Love topped the list of emotions that had the strongest correlation with loyal Tweeting behaviors. More specifically, a 10% increase in the share of Crazy among the total number of Emotional Reactions — which could reflect a jump from low to high Crazy for a given program — corresponds to an increase in 5.3 percentage points in loyalty. Similarly, a 10% increase in the share of Love among the total number of Emotional Reactions (also a large jump) corresponds to an increase of 4.2 percentage points in loyalty.



Reality Programming
Among reality competition shows (those featuring gamification and/or challenges in which there is a definitive winner or prize) there was a higher share of loyalty for programs where authors also expressed a higher share of Excited emotions. A 10% increase in the share of Excited among the total number of Emotional Reactions — again, a sizeable change — corresponds to an increase of 7.8 percentage points in loyalty.




As this analysis shows, there are certain Emotional Reactions within specific genres that are desirable because they could have a relationship to higher loyalty. While influencing viewers’ organic emotions is no small feat, networks — which move their audiences every day through powerful storytelling — can augment these experiences via Twitter and use Canvs to stay attuned of the audience’s Emotional Reactions.

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