The Weather Channel buddied up with Twitter for the launch of The Weather Channel Social, which provides individuals' local, weather-related tweets across television, Web and mobile platforms.
"Back from the Ice Age, the weather has been the way people start said a conversation," said Cameron Clayton, executive vice president of digital products of The Weather Channel Companies. "We provide this story about what's happening in your local area, about how people are experiencing the weather."
Weather Channel is using Wiredset's Trendrr social curation and
conversation analysis technology to automatically identify
weather-related tweets, using classification algorithms. (Wiredset
supplies the data for Multichannel News' Buzz Meter feature.)
With the social strategy, "we're trying to change the perception of our brand," Clayton added. "A lot of this is around the shift we need to make as a media company from a one-way communicator to a two-way communicator."
On the TV side, "I'd be lying if I didn't say we weren't trying to bring down our age" by attracting younger viewers to the network. "Hopefully we will see the effect in the minute-by-minute ratings."
As part of the launch, Weather Channel created custom local Twitter
feeds for 220 U.S. cities with populations of 100,000 and above (such as
which are updated with localized forecasts every three hours. Users can
access feeds for their location by clicking the "Follow the Forecast"
link from local forecast pages on weather.com or by entering their city
and state or ZIP code at www.weather.com/social.
Citi is the Weather Channel Social's charter sponsor. The financial services firm will place ads across TWC properties on television, online, on mobile and throughout TWC Social pages.
Weather Channel on TV will include on-air mentions and "Tweets of the Day" around the content. The network plans to show real-time messages before, during and after weather events as well as following and reporting on weather trends from Twitter.
According to the Weather Channel, weather is already one of the most popular topics on Twitter, with an average of 200 tweets per minute in the U.S. Major weather events can generate more than 2 million tweets per day.