Week 1 Guest Speaker Roundup – by Dezmond Galaviz

A Conversation with Matt Meeks, Director of Audience Development at Warner Bros. Worldwide Television Marketing

By UCLA X425 Student Dezmond Galaviz

@MattMeeks was the guest speaker during our first class session, and I appreciated how down-to-earth and relateable he was when speaking of his work at Warner Bros. I was most intrigued hearing him discuss how social media sites, like Twitter, have such an impact on ratings for television shows and building audiences for movies.

Social Media Managers are always “figuring out how to drive more conversation from fans during their programs,” Matt stated. I would have never thought that Twitter or Facebook could have such an impact on the television audience. He also mentioned that one show produced by his company was pretty much saved from cancellation by fan interaction. That, to me, is pretty impressive, and assures me that it really does matter what the consumer has to say, or tweet!

Another thing that absolutely surprised me involved Matt’s work for international soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo. Before working for Warner Bros., Matt launched a Facebook page for Ronaldo and even posed as a “ghost writer” of some sort in order to keep the soccer star’s fans updated and involved with what Cristiano was doing. Today, Ronaldo has almost 35 MILLION followers on Facebook, and it all started with Mr. Matt Meeks. It’s surprising to me – and even a little disappointing – knowing that not all “celebrities” or public figures on these websites actually handle their own posts. Maybe I’m just naive, but it would be pretty cool if these influential people actually did connect directly with their fans by using social media. It let’s us all know that they are real people like us, and that not every minute of their lives is about the glitz and glam. This doesn’t mean I won’t still follow my Nicole Richie’s or Teen Mom’s, but now I feel like I know a little more about what’s really going on behind the scenes. Thanks, Matt!

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