BuzzFeed's US election coverage attracts 6.8m Twitter viewers

By AdNews | 11 November 2016

BuzzFeed and Twitter joined forces to live stream the US Election Day, reaching 6.8 million unique viewers. Meanwhile, there were more than 75 million Election Day tweets.

BuzzFeed claimed this was the most-viewed US election related live stream on Twitter, surpassing unique viewer totals for US political convention and presidential debate live streams. 

The broadcast, produced by Bruce Perlmutter, featured political and celebrity influencers, including President Obama, star of Scandal Tony Goldwyn, 2016 Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson, American civil rights activist DeRay Mckesson, former Jeb Bush communications director Tim Miller, on-air personality Miss Info, comedian Seaton Smith and president of Voto Latino María Teresa Kumar.

While the viewing numbers are high, BuzzFeed and Twitter count a unique viewer as a person who watches the video for only three seconds.

buzzfeed election

The set of the BuzzFeed election stream

The short time that registers as a "view" has previously been criticised when BuzzFeed claimed more than 5 million people viewed its exploding watermelon video.

The broadcast had an average minute audience of 165,000 viewers globally, peaking at 244,000 concurrent viewers.

The live coverage attracted a young, mobile audience with 83% of logged-in live viewers under the age of 35, and 73% of all viewers on mobile devices.

AdNews hosted a poll asking its audience how they are watching the election, via social media, free-to-air or PayTV.

Social media was the clear winner, however, as Mark Ritson noted advertising people do not always reflect the habits on “normal consumers”.

The election, which cuminated in Donald Trump's shock win over Hillary Clinton, generated about 75 million global tweets.

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