It was "gym, Twitter, laundry" for the season 4 premiere of MTV's Jersey Show Thursday night, which drew record levels of social media engagement, according to research firms.
Jersey Shore's airing captured more social media interactions Thursday than the top 10 broadcast shows and the other nine cable shows combined, according to social media tracking service Trendrr.com. (Wiredset's Trendrr provides data for Multichannel News' Buzz Meter feature.)
Trendrr.com measured 974,169 social interactions for Jersey Shore from 6 a.m. on Aug. 4 to 5:59 a.m. on Friday -- including 912,055 comments on Twitter. The shows with the next-highest social engagement for Aug. 4 were CBS's Big Brother (with 52,973 interactions) and Discovery's Shark City (with 50,524).
The Jersey Shore episode -- in which the infamous castmates descend on Italy -- also broke the all-time record for one-day social performance of a TV series as measured by New York-based SocialGuide.
During primetime, Jersey Shore garnered 190,892 unique commenters and nearly 300,000 comments on social networks including Twitter and Facebook, with 56% of the show's social audience commenting during airtime, as measured by SocialGuide.
For the full-day of Aug. 4, Jersey Show had a record 65% share of all uniques and a 65% share of all comments made about all TV programming with 342,700 uniques and 602,780 comments, according to the SocialGuide data.
"MTV is working hard to leverage excitement for last night's episode into continued momentum for the franchise," BTIG analyst Richard Greenfield wrote in a post, adding, "TV programmers are increasingly viewing Twitter as an important driver of sentiment around their shows."
However, currently there is no way to definitively correlate social-media activity with ratings, said Christy Tanner, executive vice president and general manager of TVGuide.com and TV Guide Mobile. Some shows with high social engagement scores have seen their ratings decline dramatically, she noted.
"Social [campaigns] will only help, but where you see some caution on the part of media companies is, ‘If you want me to spend money I need to see whether engagement will translate into ratings," Tanner said.
Among MTV's social media executions around the show was one with IntoNow (since acquired by Yahoo) offering users who tagged six airings of last season's Jersey Shore to be entered for a chance to win a trip for two to the season 4 premiere.