This week, we’re taking a look back at the first quarter of 2017 in the top 10 markets across the country to track the performance of the top local broadcasters and their talents so far this year. From President Trump’s inauguration and the protests that followed some of his early actions in office to the Super Bowl and Tom Brady’s stolen jersey, it was a big 90 days of news in the nation’s top markets.
How local stations adapted their content and content from their partners to best take advantage of their large social audiences and the ability to stream live video to them determined the levels of success for many stations in the first quarter. Facebook Live video drove levels of Engagement that changed the game for some stations — even if it was just a stream of a giraffe not giving birth. While it may not have been the most newsworthy event, the incredible reach of those streams illustrated the potential audiences that can be captivated by the format and the necessity of digital and social teams that can quickly identify trends and capitalize on them with quality content.
Note: The rankings for individuals in this post are based on current station talent. Those that have moved to other stations or markets have since been migrated to their new employers within Share Rocket’s system. The rankings are based on data from Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram that Share Rocket tracks for its social media ratings.
DMA #6 – San Francisco/Oakland/San Jose
KTVU was No. 1 in San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose in Q1 2017 on social with a 36.75 Share and despite the station’s Share declining slightly in the quarter, its 5.48 million Engagements were still more than 2 million more total than the next-highest station during the 90 days. KTVU averaged 2,902 Engagements per Post on its main station Facebook Page, which would be an impressive number if KTVU anchor Frank Somerville hadn’t averaged a stunning 5,648 Engagements per Post on his Facebook Page.
Through the first quarter, KGO held fairly steady in second place with a 24.75 Share. The station’s Facebook Page had more than 985,000 followers at the end of the quarter, making it the largest social Audience for a single account in the market on any platform. As a group, KGO was the market’s No. 1 station on Twitter with a 38.6 Share. The main station Twitter account had the largest Audience in the market and the station had the top three individuals on Twitter, including Natasha Zouves, Drew Tuma, and Sandhya Patel.
Third-place KRON made strides in Q1, increasing its overall Share by +12.2% to 20.8, its total social Audience by +7.6%, and its total Engagement by +12%.
Fourth-place KNTV made the most improvement in the market in terms of percentages during the quarter with a +23.3% increase in Share, a +8.2% increase in Audience, and a +26.9% increase in Engagement compared to the previous quarter.
Somerville led the way among individuals, powered by his Facebook Audience of more than 525,000. He was followed by KRON’s Stanley Roberts, who drove more than 115,000 Engagements in the first quarter for a 0.97 Share. KTVU’s Dave Clark was third, thanks mostly to Facebook, where his Page had a 0.95 Share. Zouves was fourth with more than 70% of her Engagement coming from Twitter. Patel finished out the top five and posted more than 4,000 times on social media in the quarter, far more than any other individual in the market.
- Somerville focuses entirely on Facebook and committing his efforts towards the platform has led to great success. Somerville had a 7.2 Share in the first quarter across all platforms, while no other individual in the market had a Share over 1.0.
- KTVU was the top station on Instagram with a 49.1 Share as a group. The main station account was the single strongest account in the market with a 38.2 Share on the platform by itself and it generated more than 385,000 Engagements in the quarter.
- KTVU’s Rosemary Orozco was the No. 1 individual on Instagram with a 2.2 Share on the platform.
- KRON’s main station Facebook Page moved to No. 2 overall in the market during the quarter, generating more than 2.8 million Engagements.
DMA #7 – Washington, D.C.
In the nation’s capital, WTTG led the way in the first quarter with a 32.1 Share overall as three stations behind it remained in a tight battle for second. WTTG topped the market on Facebook with a 33.3 Share as a group led by the main station Page, which generated more than 3.2 million Engagements in the 90 days. The station also had four of the top five individuals in the market overall and all four chipped in more than 100,000 Engagements across all platforms.
Second-place WJLA moved from fourth overall at the beginning of the quarter to second with a 23.6 Share after that station more than doubled its Engagement as a group compared to the previous quarter. WJLA’s main Facebook Page was mostly to thank for the surge, accounting for about 94% of the station’s Share on the platform, but that station also showed big improvement in its Twitter and Instagram numbers.
WUSA was third in the market with a 22.4 Share, out punching its weight in terms of Audience size. WUSA had a total social Audience of less than 900,000 at the end of the quarter while the other three stations in DC’s top four all had total Audiences of 1.3 million or more. Despite that, WUSA was third in terms of total Engagement as a group and within 100,000 Engagements of second.
WRC was fourth in the market with a 21.2 Share despite a solid +29.7% increase in total Engagement compared to the previous quarter, an indicator of how competitive the social market was in Q1. The station was No. 1 on Twitter with a 32.5 Share on the platform and rose to No. 1 on Instagram with a 40.9 Share on that platform.
WRC’s Angie Goff was No. 1 among individuals in DC in the first quarter with a 3.2 Share. Goff had the No. 1 individual Facebook Page, the No. 2 individual Twitter, and the No. 1 overall Instagram account in the market in Q1. Behind Goff, the top five was a parade of WTTG talent. Annie Yu was second and averaged 181 Engagements per Post on her Facebook Page, which was No. 2 on the platform among individuals. Third was Allison Seymour, who saw a dip in Engagement compared to the previous quarter, yet nonetheless generated nearly 145,000 Engagements across all platforms. Shawn Yancy was fourth and published more than 2,200 Facebook posts in the quarter — no other individual posted more than 935. Kevin McCarthy rounded out the top five and was the No. 2 individual on Instagram with a 5.8 Share on the platform.
- Every station in the market saw more Engagement in Q1 2017 than it did in Q4 2016 and four of the five stations we track in the market saw their Engagement increase by +28% or more from quarter to quarter.
- WRC’s Twitter account had the largest Audience of any account in the market with more than 235,000 followers, but WJLA generated more Engagement on its account with only 131,460 followers.
- WRC’s Shomari Stone was the No. 1 individual on Twitter with a 5.4 Share on the platform. He averaged 130 Engagements per Tweet, a level of Engagement you typically don’t see from Twitter.
- WTTG’s main Facebook Page generated more Engagement than any other account across all platforms with nearly 3.4 million.
DMA #8 – Houston
First place in Houston went to KTRK with a 32.9 Share as the station generated more than 8 million Engagements as a group in Q1. The station was No.1 on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and the main station accounts on each platform all had the highest Share of any single account. In all, KTRK’s main station accounts were responsible for about 92% of the total Engagement generated by all of the station and its talent on social media.
KRIV was the only station in the market in improve its overall Share from the previous quarter, and they raised it by a big +28% to 27.7 to put them solidly in second place. The growth came from the main KRIV Facebook Page, which saw +69.2% more Engagement in Q1 2017 than in Q4 2016, a little more than 5.5 million.
Third-place KHOU had a 20.2 Share in the quarter and saw the largest total Audience increase of any station (as a percentage) with a +6.7% bump. The main station account also had a nice 90 days on Twitter, increasing Share by +8.3%, Audience by +12.4%, and Engagement by +28.8%.
KPRC was fourth with a 12.3 Share overall, which was helped by the top two individuals in the market, Jennifer Reyna (1.02 Share) and Dominique Sachse (1.01 Share). The station was No. 2 on Instagram as a group with a 29.3 Share and Sachse and Reyna were the top two individuals in the market on the platform.
The Houston DMA saw a big change in Q1 as Michelle Galván, an anchor for KXLN and a frequent top performer in the market’s social rankings, moved to Miami for Univision’s national program “Premier Impacto.” Since Galván moved from the market before the quarter ended, she was not included in the rankings. That meant Reyna and Sachse moved into a near dead heat for No. 1 in the market. Combined, the two added more than 465,000 Engagements to KPRC’s total. Third was Chita Craft, who averaged 241 Engagements per Post across all social platforms. KRIV’s Melissa Wilson had the No. 2 Facebook Page among individuals and it racked up more than 100,000 Engagements. Lisa Vaughn was among the top five individuals on both Facebook and Instagram, which lifted her to fifth overall.
- The main KRTK Facebook Page averaged 1,676 Engagements per Post and the main Instagram account averaged 454 Engagements per Post.
- KTRK had a huge quarter on Twitter, where their group Engagement was up +43.1% compared to Q4 2016 and they had a 43.1 Share. In total, the station and its staff generated more than 500,000 Engagements on Twitter in Q1 2017.
- KRIV’s Mark Berman was the No. 1 individual on Twitter with a 6.1 Share on the platform. His 2,100+ tweets in Q1 generated almost 75,000 Engagements.
- Of the top 15 Instagram accounts in the market in the quarter, only one grew its Audience by less than +10%. Eight of the top 15 increased their Audience on the platform by +20% or more.
DMA #9 – Boston
Note: Share Rocket’s Boston station rankings do not include WBTS (NBC Boston) because the station was added to the market in our system midway through the quarter and comparing the partial data to other stations’ full data would put them at a disadvantage. WBTS will be included in the second quarter rankings.
The first quarter of 2017 in Boston was extremely close with WFXT leading the market with a 30.9 Share overall, just beating out WCVB’s 30.2 Share. The race was even closer on Facebook, where WFXT had a 30.96 Share as a group compared to a 30.93 Share for WCVB.
WFXT was the top station on Instagram with a 57.9 Share as a group on the platform and the main station account was responsible for 34.1 of that Share. No other account in the market had a Share higher than 9.0 on Instagram. On Facebook, WFXT’s main Page was No. 2 in the market and generated 1,422 Engagements per Post.
ABC affiliate WCVB led the market on Twitter with a 24.7 Share as a group on the platform, and the main station account was the only Twitter account in the market to generate more than 100,000 Engagements in Q1. The station also had the top two sub-brands in the market across all platforms in Chronicle on WCVB Channel 5 and Boston Weather Updates, which (combined) also generated more than 100,000 Engagements in the quarter.
The Boston DMA’s other ABC station, WMUR, was third in the market with a 13.3 overall Share. The station was aided by having the No. 1 individual in the market on social, meteorologist Josh Judge.
Fourth-place WBZ was the No. 2 station on Twitter as a group with a 23.7 Share, and their meteorologist Eric Fisher accounted for 7.6 of that. He was the No. 1 individual on the platform.
Among individuals, Judge was No. 1 an overall Share of 1.7, driven mostly by his Facebook Page. Across all platforms, he generated more than 295,000 Engagements in Q1. Fisher was second, thanks largely to his Twitter dominance. WFXT talents Shiri Spear and Stephanie Coueignoux came in at third and fourth, respectively, which helped put their station at the top of the overall rankings. WCVB’s Maria Stephanos rounded out the top five after increasing her total Engagement by +25.4% compared to the previous quarter.
- WFXT’s Coueignoux was the No. 2 individual on Facebook in the market and averaged 330 Engagements per post on her Facebook Page.
- When all station and talent accounts included, both WFXT and WCVB generated more than 5 million total Engagements on social media apiece over the 90-day period.
- WFXT’s Spear was the No. 1 individual on Instagram in Q1 with a 6.1 Share on the platform and No. 3 among individuals on Facebook.
- The Engagement generated by WMUR’s main Facebook Page and Josh Judge’s Facebook Page accounted for nearly 90% of the Engagement the station produced on social media in the quarter.
DMA #10 – Atlanta
WAGA was a strong No. 1 on social in the first quarter of 2017 in Atlanta with an overall Share of 42.4. The station generated an incredible 11.9 million Engagements in the quarter across all of its station and talent accounts. The station was a powerhouse on Facebook, with about 90% of the total Engagement for the station in Q1 coming from the main WAGA Facebook Page. That Page also averaged 4,389 Engagements per Post. WAGA also grew its total social Audience the most of any station in the market in the quarter, with an +11.9% increase.
Second-place WSB had an overall Share of 27.4, and the station was No. 1 as a group on Twitter (where the station had a 44.2 Share) and on Instagram (where the station had a 46.4 Share). As a group, the station had more than 250,000 Engagements on Instagram in the quarter. WSB also boasted the largest total social Audience at the end of the quarter with nearly 3 million followers across all platforms.
WXIA increased its Share the most of the stations in the market in Q1 (+9.8%) to improve to an overall 26.0 Share score. WXIA’s main Facebook Page was No. 2 in the market with a 26.0 Share and it generated more than 6.65 million Engagements over the 90 days. WXIA also had the top two individuals in the market on Twitter in Chris Holcomb and Radi Nabulsi.
WXIA’s Chris Holcomb was the No. 1 individuals in the market overall with a 1.1 Share. He was No. 1 on Twitter, thanks in part to a viral tweet (more on that below), and was No. 2 on Facebook where his Page had more than 100,000 Engagements in the quarter by itself. WSB’s Glenn Burns was second in the market overall and had the No. 1 Facebook Page among individuals. On Facebook, Burns averaged 365 Engagements per Post. David Chandley of WAGA was third thanks primarily to his Facebook Page, which generated +58.7% more Engagement in Q1 2017 than it did in Q4 2016. Coming in at No. 4 was Joanne Feldman, the fourth and final individual in the market to have more than 100,000 total Engagement across all of her social platforms in the quarter. Fifth was Radi Nabulsi, who covers University of Georgia sports for WXIA and who generated (literally) 99.9% of his total Engagement in the quarter on Twitter, where he had a 6.0 Share.
- Holcomb’s success on the platform stemmed from an exchange between him and his daughter via text that went viral when he tweeted out a screenshot. The tweet has generated more than 200,000 Engagements to date.
- The No. 1 individual in the market on Instagram was WAGA’s Paul Milliken, who had a 4.0 Share.
- Three Facebook Pages in Atlanta had eclipsed the 1 million follower mark by the end of the quarter. They were WAGA, WSB, and WXIA’s main station Pages.
- WXIA’s main Facebook Page posted roughly twice as often as WAGA and WSB’s main Pages.