Appointment to view TV is back and this time it’s hashtagged.

For most of the 21st Century trend spotters have been talking about personalisation as the predominant force. Tailored for you, and delivered when you want and how you want it. What we’re now seeing is a trend in absolutely the opposite direction. Shared or communal experiences have a much bigger pull than most people expected.

Look at TV. All the chat about TV viewing over the last few years has included the trend to smaller TVR deliveries. There’s been lots of noise about the golden days of half the country watching the Morecombe and Wise Christmas Special being long gone. Whilst half the country don’t sit down to watch one show in that way there is still some Event programming that brings in big live audiences – The Big Brother Final, XFactor; the World Cup. And now, thanks to media that many felt would threaten TV, Event viewing is multiplying and becoming easier and easier to participate in.

In this Age of Dialogue, the ability to join in with friends or even strangers and talk about a TV show whilst it is on air is transforming the water cooler moment from the day after a can’t miss programme to whilst the programme is actually on air. Have a look at some great examples of how social media is enhancing viewing to both TV programmes and TV advertising on the MediaCom MBA blog at www.wearemba.com.

Expect to see more hashtags encouraging this like #laterjools or #hignfy (Have I Got News For You). Expect to see more hashtag content in the programmes like the Late Nighthashtags on Jimmy Fallon (http://www.latenightwithjimmyfallon.com/video/say-what-part-1-7-16-10/1239312).

Would TV pundits and internet soothsayers have predicted that Facebook and Twitter would help to increase ratings and dissuade the audience from waiting for catch up TV or Video On Demand? I can’t remember hearing any predictions along those lines. But that’s exactly what we’ve arrived at. If you miss the live show, you miss the best of the chat. So appointment to view TV is having a delightful resurgence. This trend delivers great opportunities for advertisers.

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