In this week’s Social Scorecard, KENS leads San Antonio’s Facebook action mainly due to listening to what people want, and it’s more than just news. KENS, Tegna’s CBS affiliate, is ahead in social media actions in the market over the last six months according to data from audience insight firm Shareablee. KENS has more than […]
KENS, Tegna’s CBS affiliate, is ahead in social media actions in the market over the last six months according to data from audience insight firm Shareablee.
KENS has more than 7.7 million actions on social, 30% of the total engagement generated by the DMA (No. 37), with more than 25.7 million social actions.
KSAT, the market’s ABC affiliate owned by Graham Media, is a close second behind KENS in total actions, and leads the market in actions per post with 317.
KSAT also led on Twitter with almost 300,000 actions.
The San Antonio Current, a free weekly alternative newspaper owned by Euclid Media Group, led on Instagram with more than 260,000 actions.
Gregory Matthews, KENS’ digital media director, attributes the station’s success on Facebook to listening to what interests people and following social trends.
“We are long past the days of telling the audience what they ought to care about,” says Matthews.
“We are taking our cues from them and that means that on some days it’s hard news and some days it’s more feature and trending topics.”
So what topics trend on KENS’ Facebook?
“Anything involving the Spurs obviously, or the Cowboys, will trend even with people who aren’t sports fans.”
Other topics that resonate with KENS’ Facebook users are community events like Fiesta.
In addition to community events, Matthews says the station creates social videos exclusively for social media and for the website.
“We do a lot of things like looking at new restaurants and giving people a sense of what’s available in town, things to do, places to go,” says Matthews.
“We have gotten feedback that that’s important to people, and it comes through in their social interactions, their comments, their likes, their shares, point us in that direction. It sets us apart and makes people realize that there is more to the brand than just telling you about news.”
To help provide the video needed for these types of city happenings, KENS has hired digital producers.
“We are hiring them with video experience,” says Matthews, “so they are able to take on these types of assignments. We don’t have digital producers who sit at their desk every day all day. We have a variety of tasks for them. We are looking to just get them out in the field.”
In light of recent Facebook changes that favor what friends and family interact with online, at the expense of media companies and news content, the emphasis on what’s happening in the community also positions KENS well for the future.
“If Facebook diminishes the amount of news content or media content that’s showing up directly in people’s feeds,” Matthews says, “we still feel that we are giving people in San Antonio things that they are going to want to interact with. They are going to see them because their friends and family are interacting with them, so we kind of think we are well positioned for where this is going and the sky isn’t quite falling yet.”
KENS’ approach to populating its Facebook posts with things to do in the community isn’t at the expense of news coverage. Anchors and reporters take to Facebook Live when there’s breaking news.
“That’s really helped us where having that video on scene has been critical to our early coverage,” says Matthews.
“When the mass shooting happened in Sutherland Springs our reporter was on Facebook Live for the first hour and a half, giving real-time updates. That was a widely viewed Facebook Live.”