17 Aug
2012

Stat of the Week

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Stat of the Week: 148 million negative impressions.

3 Birds Stat of the WeekWhether or not you liked how NBC handled their coverage of the Olympics, as this article illustrates, the network ultimately fumbled a golden opportunity (McKayla would so not be impressed)—and damaged its reputation in the process.

As you may know, NBC made live-streaming of the Olympic Games available only to those users with an eligible cable provider account. Needless to say, this tactic left many frustrated, would-be viewers—many of whom rely exclusively on the internet rather than cable to get their TV fix—fuming. So much so that they took to Twitter and decided they were going to talk about the Olympics anyways, namely by creating the hashtag #NBCFail.

During the month of the Olympics, netscore counted 93,000 tweets utilizing that hashtag, which together accounted for a whopping 148 million negative impressions. This number is made all the more damaging when you consider the fact that NBC itself reported only 157 million people actually watched the live streams.

Imagine if NBC had made the live streams easy to access, available to everyone, and free (by which we mean ad-supported). Those 93,000 negative tweets probably would have been replaced by positive, patriotic tweets that included NBC mentions and hashtags. Instead, they chose to monetize the content in a different way—one that earned them 157 million short-term internet viewers whose attention shifted elsewhere when the Olympics ended and almost 100,000 negative comments that will live on the Internet forever.