Whilst this season of “Downton Abbey” brought on fevers throughout the Abbey in the form of the Spanish Flu, the US has been rocked by a severe case of “Downton” fever. Interest in the program has grown by over 1400% during season two versus last year’s season one airing (defined by volume of searches YoY). Not only are people searching for a higher volume of searches for variations of “Downton”, but they are also seeking out information about a broader variety of “Downton” topics. In fact, the breadth of variants for “Downton” is almost ten times larger than the same time last year.
PBS has been the key beneficiary of searches for “Downton” variants, but shops and media outlets are also capturing traffic from the “Downton” effect. Amazon and the PBS Shop are capturing their share through paid search, as consumers seek out their own copies of the series on DVD and the companion guides for the series. Hulu has recently entered the paid search game for “Downton” terms, as Hulu Plus is airing “Downton Abbey” season one.
Search behaviors indicate that I’m not the only person dying to know whether Anna and Bates will finally rid themselves of the scurrilous charges brought against everyone’s favorite valet. Insatiable appetites for the series have web-users not only seeking out the Christmas special episode, but also looking for season three of the series. “Saturday Night Live’s” mock “Downton Abbey” advertisement has also caught attention with its hilarious take on how the show would be seen on Spike TV.
“Downton Abbey” has been a boon to PBS and to anyone who loves a good drama.
Thanks to Margot Bonner, Analyst with the Strategic Services team (and Downton Abbey fan!) for today’s analysis.