Top TV Stations on Facebook

ABC7 Chicago

WLS in Chicago (DMA 3) has more than 2 million Facebook fans. In a single year, the station’s Facebook page generated more than 41.7 million actions (actions include reactions, shares, and comments) with 17,500 posts.

WLS News Director Jennifer Graves says Facebook has been an important part of the station’s overall news strategy for some time.

“Early on we recognized it was a platform people turned to for information, and we realized we needed content there to reach people,” Graves said. “We used Facebook to engage people with our brand and then drive them back to TV. It was another shelf for our product.”

The station, which is owned by ABC, reported that as much as 84% of digital traffic to its website came from Facebook referrals in 2016.

  • Do you see examples of the station engaging the audience on Facebook?
  • How would you define the station’s brand based on the posts you see?

WBIR Channel 10

WBIR in Knoxville, TN, (DMA 62) has about half a million Facebook fans. Former WBIR News Director Martha Jennings thinks part of the station’s success is tied to her newsroom’s diligence in taking the Facebook audience seriously.

“Someone is assigned to monitor Facebook comments at all times of the day; we’re always listening, in the comment section, we’re replying. You can’t let something blow up on our Facebook page without a response,” Jennings said. “Originally, I never wanted to say we’re sorry because I felt like it meant we had done something wrong, but it’s a different beast; we had to change; we apologize when the Facebook audience feels we’ve let them down.”

  • Do you see examples of the station interacting with the audience?
  • Is there any content that is generating a negative response? If yes, how is the station reacting?


KTVB in Boise, ID, (DMA 106) has about 200,000 Facebook fans and does not post as frequently as some stations, but they say they try to post with a purpose. They believe their knowledge of the Facebook audience allows them to be more selective with posting content they know will resonate.

“For us, we are very loyal to our brand, and we know our audience, so things that work in other markets don’t necessarily engage or do well here, and I think our team really knows our audience,” said Tegna-owned KTVB’s General Manager Kate Morris. “We study metrics and look at what does well on a regular basis, so we feel we are in tune with our hyperlocal audience; we don’t over-post throughout the day; we focus on quality content.”

Morris says they are talking about increasing the frequency of their posts, but they won’t “post just to post.”

  • Do you see any content that would not be considered “local?” If yes, why do you think the station created that post?
  • Is there a post that received little to no response from the audience? Why do you think that is?