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3 December 2011

The X Factor: Social media and the live shows infographic – Week 8

Rachel Hawkes, account director, Elemental By Rachel Hawkes

The quarter finals gave each of the contestants an opportunity to showcase two songs, choosing a guilty pleasure and a song they love to sing. The Girls' mentor Kelly Rowland, the only judge that had all three acts remaining found her success (or luck) to be waning with Misha B and Janet Devlin in the bottom two left to sing it out for survival.

Janet forgetting lyrics for the second time and Misha B's failure to 'connect' enough with The X Factor's voting public saw two of the more social media aware contestants pitted against each other.  For Janet, the only contestant with a loyal YouTube fan base before auditioning.

By choosing not to make a decision, mentor of both girls Kelly Rowland sealed Janet's fate, sending the 17-year old home and allowing Misha to scrape through another week.  In what may be some consolation to Misha B, Gary Barlow said he would have sent Janet home.  With the semi-finals fast approaching, Janet leaves being the strongest across social media throughout the entire series, however, her Facebook and Twitter fans have been growing at a considerably slower rate than other contestants since Week 5.  Only time will tell how strong these channels remain strong for her, and indeed other contestants.

So, who's going to win? Social media is pointing to a Little Mix victory.  Although there may not be huge differences in the actual numbers of fans that each of the four remaining contestants have across both Facebook and Twitter,  what separates them is how they are growing week by week.  For example, Misha B was gaining almost 16,000 fans per weekend, but in the latter weeks this has less than halved to just under 7,000.  In contrast, in the first four weeks Little Mix gained an average of 4,500 per weekend but have seen a huge spike in popularity - evident through the 20,000 new fans they have gained each week since the half way point.

What about overall throughout the weeks?  Naturally the rate of growth of each contestants social assets is reflected by their performance, what goes on during the week and so on.  But viewing figures will have an impact as well.  If we look at the average number of fans that each contestant gained throughout the eight weeks, this follows a similar pattern to that of the viewing figures.

The X Factor audience viewing figures vs. average growth of social channels

Viewing figures v social media growth

The graph above looks at the how viewing figures might correlate against the average growth across Facebook and Twitter for contestants.  You can see the huge spike in the growth of fans from Week 1 and Week 2, this can be attributed to the social media channels being new for the contestants (bar Janet and Misha B), and that the viewing public are just finding out who they are and seeking them out in social environments - you would expect to see that during those first two weeks.

From Week 3 to Week 5 you can see that viewing figures for Saturday go down, as does the number of new social media fans.  Week 6, everything spikes up (significant spike with Saturday figures and social media), this is the week of Frankie Cocozza's controversial exit and the re-entry of one of the contestants that left in Week 1.  Advertising for the show increased throughout the week in the lead-up to that show as the programme makers encouraged the public to vote for which contestant they wanted to see come back.

The number of new social media fans tends to follow more closely to the viewing figures of Saturday's show than it does on Sunday.  We can see from the numbers that we are recording that more people seek out contestants social media profiles during the Saturday live show than they do on the Sunday (with the exception of the contestant that leaves that week), which correlates with what we are seeing on this graph.  

As we approach the semi-finals, what will the contestants do to boost their channels using social media and what impact could this have upon voting?

The X Factor: Social media and the live shows infographic – Week 8

Categories: X Factor, Social media, Marketing, Infographics, Elemental

Tags: Xfactor, Social TV, social media, iTV, the X Factor, social media insight, social media measurement

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