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It’s been talked about before, even predicted. TV is going social. But I think TV is going social in a way that wasn’t foreseen. Cynthia Boris at Marketing Pilgrim talks about it.

It seems that 64% of TV watchers have seen a social symbol appear on a program they’ve watched. Cool. But then she goes on to report that 33% of them acted on that symbol.

This is all great. What she’s really saying is that TV programming executives are now adding Like buttons, QR codes, and other social buttons on the moving images on the screen. So viewers are using their smart phones to interact with their TVs, Liking TV shows, and performing other tasks as well. That’s it?

OK, so I know what you’re thinking. Isn’t that enough? I mean, social TV has arrived.

Yes, it has. But I think the bigger question is how many TV programs actually employ the social buttons?

If you consider that the average TV watcher spends 2-5 hours watching TV during a 24-hour period, how many shows will they watch during that time? And only 64% of them saw a social button.

Let’s figure 30 minutes per show. A 3-hour-a-day viewer will watch 6 shows. Let’s say she’s a part of the 64%. She saw the Like button on one of her favorite shows. That’s 1 show in 6. Less than 20% of the programming.

Don’t get me wrong. I think social TV is a big deal. I think it will be even a bigger deal in 10 years. In fact, I expect that the “social” part of TV will become even more social, allowing TV viewers across great distances to interact with each on their TV screens while they are watching the same show. I can imagine people using their televisions as a sort of social network in itself.

We’ve only touched the tip of the pond with this social TV thing. Sure, it’s something to get excited about. But let’s hold onto our hats. It will get better. Don’t you think?

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