How TLC uses social media to engage with wedding program viewers

With at least ten shows dedicated to weddings, TLC is one of basic cable’s most noteworthy providers of wedding-themed programming. Friday is officially “Bride Day” on TLC. Shows like Say Yes to the Dress (and its iterations, Say Yes to the Dress Atlanta and Say Yes to the Dress Bridesmaids), newcomer, Something Borrowed, Something New, and Four Weddings dominate the evening’s programming. Weekly programming is scattered with other wedding-themed shows including My Big Fat American Gypsy Wedding, Randy to the Rescue, and I Found the Gown.

Below I explore how TLC is using social media to engage with viewers of Say Yes to the Dress (SYTTD).

Hashtags

In the last year or two networks have been eager to capitalize on hashtags (popularized by Twitter) as a promotional tool. Networks encourage viewers to use hashtags during programming by placing the show’s hastag somewhere on the screen. For example, TLC places the hashtags “#syttd” (Say Yes to the Dress) and “#fourweddings” in the upper-left hand corner of the screen while these programs are being broadcast. Below is an example of how some Twitter users used the SYTTD hashtag during and after the March 15th episode.

#syttd Twitter

Hashtags are a simple promotional tool. They enable viewers to identify and interact with one another and they have the potential to increase awareness of the program.

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