Best Practices

#BrandsTalkTwitter ⁠— UKTV the voice of the network

By Gordon Macmillan
Tuesday, 15 October 2019

In a new series, we get a behind-the-scenes look into how our favourite brands use Twitter. This week, it’s the turn of UKTV (@UKTV). 

Representing seven channels that form UKTV, the main @UKTV handle has a big job to do. Its channels range from the comedy of @davechannel, which we have highlighted recently for its championing of male mental health, to the crime drama of @alibi_channel

The variety and number of handles it looks after provides a great example of how to manage a multi-handle strategy effectively. Here’s what the @UKTV social team told @TwitterMktgUK:

1. What role does Twitter fulfil in your social media strategy?

Twitter has a TV-loving audience that makes watching a show much more of a shared experience. Each of our channel brands has a unique tone of voice, and we talk to people about more than just TV. @UKTV is the voice of the network, the main handle for helping viewers with queries and lets people see what life is like at UKTV. It’s our most flexible brand on Twitter. @davechannel is our comedy channel and also a champion of male mental health awareness; @goldchannel is the nation’s favourite classic comedy along with new original shows; @YesterdayTweets is history and factual programming; @wchannel has a more female audience; @alibi_channel is crime drama; while @dramachannel is a mix of classics. @EdenChannel is natural history and @UKTVPlay our catch-up service. We curate a list of UKTV people on Twitter so people can follow and ask questions – we also have a very social CEO! @marcusparthur

2. How do you handle direct messaging from consumers? 

Our DMs are always open, and we respond throughout the day and evening. The evening is peak TV watching time!

3. How do you split planned activity vs tactical? 

We plan out channel brand activity whether it’s a motivational Monday Tweet from @davechannel or This Day in History from @YesterdayTweets, combined with tactically jumping on trends and memes or live-Tweeting our shows. There’s a huge range of content, and the channel brands help to connect audiences – on Twitter, there is a thriving community of niches. The channels also run bespoke made-for-Twitter campaigns, like #GoldCrackers, an annual hunt to find the best new Christmas jokes.

4. What is the most important thing to bear in mind before you Tweet?

Our Tweets always have the viewer in mind. Is it helpful, informative, interesting or entertaining? (Sometimes the sweet-spot is all four). Crucially is it simple, easy to understand and overall – human.

5. What're your most successful Tweets? Can you share a couple of examples and tell us why each one worked for you?

This one from last year worked because it was precisely what our Dave audience was thinking too.

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For Gold, it’s often a fresh take on much -loved comedy:

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@gordonmacmillan

Gordon Macmillan

‎@gordonmacmillan‎

Head of Editorial, Twitter EMEA