WGRZ, Tegna’s NBC affiliate in Buffalo, N.Y., is ahead by a half million social media actions in the market over the last six months according to data from audience insight firm Shareablee. WGRZ has more than 2.5 million actions on social, 31% of the total engagement generated by the DMA (No. 53), with more than […]
WGRZ has more than 2.5 million actions on social, 31% of the total engagement generated by the DMA (No. 53), with more than 8.3 million social actions.
WGRZ also led on Twitter with more than 135,000 actions.
WKBW, Buffalo’s ABC affiliate owned by Scripps, led the market in actions per post with 159.
Top-40 formatted WKSE-FM (Kiss 98.5), owned by Entercom Communications, led on Instagram with almost 114,000 actions.
What is WGRZ doing on Facebook that helped it lead the market by more than 500,000 actions?
Strategic and regular use of Facebook Live, says Kim Degeorge-Pike, WRGZ’s digital director.
“We have done Facebook Live every morning after our daybreak show, which gives our viewers an opportunity to interact with our anchors, for viewers to ask them questions and get answers and just kind of feel like they are a part of the morning show.”
The weather in Buffalo, especially this time of year, is another opportunity for viewers to interact on Facebook Live.
“Our weather folks do a lot of weather Facebook Lives, especially when we have a major storm coming up,” says Degeorge-Pike.
“They will talk about what’s happening and answer questions for viewers that they can’t answer during the newscast.”
Reporters on the scene of breaking news also go to Facebook Live to engage with users, sometime before they even get to the story, like WRGZ’s Emily Lampa.
“She will start in the car,” says Degeorge-Pike, “talking about what she is heading to and what information she has now, and what we will see when she gets there.”
Degeorge-Pike says WGRZ’s anchors and reporters will go on Facebook Live to ask questions and start conversations to find stories they can use in the station’s newscasts and on their website.
“One of our reporters did a story about a former high school football star who was suffering from mental illness. It was posted on our website and after the story aired, we had a group of mental health professionals on Facebook Live answering questions for our viewers. That’s something that we are trying to do more of is that multiplatform experience, get people through social media to watch our TV newscast and then finish up or continue the conversation on Facebook Live.”
Degeorge-Pike says that story resulted in almost double-digit ratings for the station’s 6 p.m. newscast that day.
In addition to Facebook Live, Degeorge-Pike says the strange and unusual stories also do well to generate engagement.
She says WGRZ’s parent company, Tegna, produces a series called Heart Threads, feel-good stories that do really well, and is shared with the other Tegna stations across the country.
“We have great support from our parent company, Tegna, to provide us with the resources to continue our success and it’s been a very positive experience for us.”