Making Meaningful Connections with Social Media

Submitted by geraldine on Sun, 05/04/2014 - 23:14

Radio and TV programs should increasingly use social media to connect to their audiences. This should not be a passive experience but a meaningful connection. Mr. Justin Kings spoke about the value of social media at the AIBD/Eurovision Academy/CCTV Master Class on Social Media and TV Programmes.

Mr. Kings, lecturer at the Eurovision Academy, Geneva, Switzerland, and former BBC news general manager, served as facilitator for this two-day workshop that started on 4 May 2014 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

In his presentation, he said using social media will help build communities around program issues, provide fertile ground for discussion and debate, and enable journalists and producers explain the background and story behind the program.

He said these advantages can be appropriate and relevant to factual TV programs that use social media. Some of the disadvantages he cited were the need to give greater concentration when watching compared to entertainment programs, and greater need for moderation.

Some 18 participants from 12 countries from Asia-Pacific and the Middle East are attending the two-day workshop which is one of the four pre-summit events held prior to the Asia Media Summit from 6-8 May 2014.

During the opening ceremony, Ms. Natalie Labourdette, Head of Eurovision Academy, urged broadcasters to make programs different using social media.

“Social media is an important tool to find news sources and connect with audiences,” she said.

Mr. Kings cited the benefits of engagement to commercial and public service broadcasters, among them to learn about the audience, better serve the audience, receive feedback, ideas and input, and to be accessible, human, like and trusted.

Social media has become an important tool for broadcasters, Mr. Kings said, as globally the number of social media users is huge and continues to grow.

“Younger people are engaging and so do older people. Social media is changing the public’s relationship with big and small organizations,” he said.