Broadcasters are increasingly using social media to engage with audiences and create online buzz around their shows in the hope of boosting viewing figures and advertising revenue.
However, the business advisory firm found that Britons’ enthusiasm is currently limited and driven by young people.
A survey of over 4,000 people found that just 7% of Britons have become fans of their favourite programmes on Facebook. Penetration among 18-24 year-olds penetration is 46%.
The study found that two-fifths of 18-24 year-olds comment on the social media page of the programme they are watching while watching it but almost all do this only “occasionally”.
Howard Davies, media partner at Deloitte, says that social media serves to raise increase interest in programmes and boost advertising revenues.
“If social chatter is sufficiently voluminous this catalyses a snowball effect as traditional and new media pick up on the story. This typically raises the value of content – a programme with strong social currency is generally of greater appeal to advertisers as it means their brand becomes associated with content that is both watched and talked about,” he says.
He adds that although the relationship between television and social media is mutually beneficial at present the relationship will become increasingly competitive over time.
“As the reach, usage and value of social media and networks steadily rise, this could cause advertising budgets to get diverted from television. Over time, Web 2.0’s reach is increasingly looking like it may emulate that of television.
“Combine this with online’s precise targeting and real-time measurability, and advertising rates for social networks and media could increase, as they prove their efficacy and migrate to a cost per action model – which television would struggle to replicate.”
Deloitte’s study follows a report by Ofcom that found Britons are increasingly using more than one type of communications device at the same time.