As ITV’s X Factor entered the first week with the public vote determining the fate of the contestants, The Groups lost its second act, Nu Vibe. What impact did the social media numbers across contestants, judges and The X Factor have?
In terms of number of fans on Facebook, although they grew over the week by a significant number across the acts (Janet’s by over 100,000) the top four didn’t change place: Janet, Frankie, Misha B and The Risk. If you were to make an early prediction based on last week and looking solely at the figures below, Janet looks like a possible winner. Her social media channels have grown exponentially last week, particularly on Facebook which jumped up by 153,000 Likes. Janet was always an early leader, before the live shows even started and unfortunately last week we learnt that her grandfather had passed away, which undoubtedly had an impact on her social media profile.
Despite leaving the competition last week, Amelia Lily (9,876) had more Facebook fans than Nu Vibe (9,688), Johnny Robinson (8,302) and Kitty Brucknell (6,630). Amelia Lily is the fifth most popular contestant on Twitter, with 64,509 followers, beating both The Risk and Misha B by more than 20,000 followers. At the end of Sunday’s show last week (the 9th of October – Week 1), she had 39,330 followers, meaning in one week her followers grew by a huge 64%. She did perform at GAY on Saturday evening, and has maintained an active presence on her social networks since last Sunday’s Results Show, which may explain the steady growth of her social channels.
Interestingly, the Rhythmix are the second to least popular across Twitter in terms of number of followers. I say interesting, as they are certainly one of the more ‘socially engaged’ acts in the competition, and have even got at least 2-3 fan run Twitter profiles and for the second week in a row were one of the most active tweeters between the live shows on Saturday and Sunday.
Although Johnny is on, or near the bottom of the pack in terms of the actual number of fans across Facebook and Twitter, this week his social audience grew in size by approximately 64%. In his VT before his performance, we saw Johnny struggling to get to grips with social media – particularly Twitter – but he had managed to tweet to Kylie Minogue whose song he was performing on the show. Hashtag #Blueberry was also a trending topic after Johnny got his berries mixed up when referring to fellow Overs contestant Sami typing away on her Blackberry. That, and having Kylie Minogue tweet her support of him can be attributed to this massive growth in supporters during Saturday and Sunday’s show. Also, by looking at the activity throughout the week, and the number of fans during that period, Johnny was in the bottom three in terms of actual numbers, further strengthening that it was these factors that saw his social audience grow by 64%.
Facebook’s new ‘Talking about this’, shows the number of people that have interacted with a page, from comments to Likes etc. Frankie (who was in the bottom two this week) had less people engage with him from the start of Saturday’s live show until the end of the Results Show on Sunday, than he did beforehand. Last week he saw the biggest increase in fan engagement on his Page, and this week the least. This is not to be confused with the number of people, which next to Janet Devlin (who after Sunday’s show had 24,817 people ‘Talking about this’) he had the highest number of people at 15,504, yet just before Saturday’s show got underway he was at 16,186.
Frankie’s social media presence and the votes he received is worth noting. When you look at how low his engagement levels are, the number of YouTube views and the percentage of his social channels growth in between shows, it’s surprising when you consider the sheer number of fans and followers he has amassed across Facebook and Twitter. So, why weren’t these few hundred thousand people motivated to pick up the phone and vote for him? Given the bulk of Frankie’s social fan base may be young girls, who most likely have pay-as-you-go mobiles – is it a cost factor? If so, if The X Factor allowed viewers to vote via Facebook using Facebook Credits (as Big Brother does, which is more cost effective than phone voting), would he still have been in the bottom two this week? Or, is it more a case of they thought he was safe because everyone else would be voting for him? We’ve seen this happen many times before.
Heading into week three of the live shows and the second round of public voting, we’ll be looking at factors that are impacting upon social media surrounding the acts and judges (and The X Factor official channels), particularly the buzz around Frankie Cocozza. Could each contestant, and their mentor be doing more in a social media environment to win the battle of the hearts, minds and the voting fingers of the public. Note to Gary Barlow – perhaps getting your Twitter ID right on The Xtra Factor would help
And can Louis Walsh continue to avoid using Twitter and pick up his votes via his acts channels to keep all of them safe this weekend? (click to enlarge).