wabc social ratings new york

The TV Social Ratings™ race in New York actually isn’t much of a race.

ABC’s WABC captured a 44 Social Share™ in New York from Oct. 6 – Oct. 12, generating more than 600,000 engagements across Facebook and Twitter. That’s more than every other top station in New York combined (470,214).

A large portion of that engagement was generated from a series of posts focusing on coverage of the “bucket list baby” from Philadelphia. We’ll cover that story in depth later this week.

ABC7 has dominated the New York social market for all of 2014, with a Social Equity Index™ of 98, which is driven by the strong performance by its primary brand on Facebook and Twitter, which has a 98 SEI™ and has generated more than 4.9 million engagements over the past 90 days. The second-best primary brand asset is FOX 5 with a 75 SEI™ and 2.1 million engagements over the same period. WABC’s primary brand has a slightly larger audience (1,065,935 fans and followers) than FOX 5 (791,006), and earned twice the engagement last week. All indicators that WABC might be the nation’s best in social.

But that’s not the entire story. WABC’s sub-brands and talent are also contributing to the station’s dominance. Across their profiles, they’ve built a sizable audience (685,000-plus) and have generated more more than 341,000 engagements over the past 90 days. Compare that to Fox 5, whose sub-brands have built an audience of only 300,000 and engagement of only 177,000.

WABC’s Amy Freese is the gold standard for individuals, with a 90 SEI™, and turned in another good week earning a .76 Social Share™, leading all individuals in the market with more than 6,700 engagements.

We’ve monitored the New York market for six months. One thing is certain — everyone else has a long way to go to catch WABC.

Social Ratings for the week of Oct. 6 – Oct. 12, 2014

17 ABC43.98981,750,4400.05%2,188-0.09%605,0041.43%
24 NBC14.33521,338,2810.01%1,497-0.93%127,103-0.05%
3CW 1115.4947564,6140.03%2,312-0.22%123,8960.63%
45 FOX13.93441,116,5210.03%1,0871.78%150,9611.24%
52 CBS9.6631713,2220.03%1,526-0.72%61,107-0.38%
641 Univision2.6110286,8110.02%5220.58%7,147-1.53%

Top individuals

1Amy Freeze7 ABC900.7646,246936,747-2.25%
2Sree Sreenivasan2 CBS770.7166,4961412,310-8.73%
3Rosanna Scotto5 FOX790.7081,0101262,5753.58%
4Otis Livingston2 CBS630.681,972206415-0.48%
5Ken Rosato7 ABC640.6521,66617660315.31%

Social Equity Index™ (SEI™): Measures social equity you have built over time and performance — relative peers. Social Share™: Measures a brand’s raw share of the total audience, voice and engagement in a defined market. Audience: Combined fans and followers (Facebook, Twitter) for all profiles. Voice: Outbound posting and commenting activity. Engagements: Total likes, shares, comments, mentions, replies, retweets and favorites for the brand.

Top content, best practices

The most engaging piece of content in New York this week is a heart-swelling tale of parents-to-be who had proven they were great parents even before birth. It’s such a great example of social story-telling, that it’s this week’s Leo winner, and we’re saving that for a full blog post. Check back Wednesday for that. But the second most engaging post this week was similarly compelling.

What would you do if you were dying?

Given, what you’ve just read, it’s likely no surprise that our top piece of content this week comes from WABC. This post about 29-year-old Brittany Maynard’s decision to move from San Francisco to Oregon in order to take advantage of Oregon’s “death with dignity” law to end her battle with cancer generated more than 31,000 likes, 12,000 shares and more than 7,800 comments.

It’s a powerful and controversial story that certainly meets all of our checklist criteria for a great post:

Tells an urgent, compelling, inspirational or funny story?
Appeal to emotion?
Use a photo?
Ask for engagement?

The post is very well done. WABC knew this would generate a lot of dialogue. So, they used a kicker at the beginning to set the tone and kick start the conversation, “WHAT WOULD YOU DO?”:

Jack Werner Stich: “Very selfless and courageous of her to spare her family the slow torture from her demise.”
Leticia Hale: “Oh Brittany… my heart breaks for your pain. I just wish you’d give your Jesus a chance instead of taking your own life.”

It’s an excellently crafted post that appeals directly to emotion and literally asks for engagement.

WABC wasn’t finished. They also extended the arc of the social story. It’s something that’s becoming an important social tactic. WABC followed several days later with a post about Kara Tippetts, who suffers from breast cancer, begging Maynard to reconsider ending her life.

The tactic is important because it updates and informs fans on a story they care deeply about, and it allows for engagement with other fans who might not have seen the post in their feed.

Well done, folks.

Each week Share Rocket highlights the top performing stations and individuals across the nation’s top TV markets, sharing insights and best practices that are helping the nation’s best social journalists connect with their audience. Next week: Los Angeles.

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