According to Business Insider, Twitter is buying Bluefin Labs, a social TV analytics company.
While Twitter has no doubt been making moves further into the social TV analytics space in recent months — the most obvious one being a partnership with Nielsen to develop a social TV measurement standard — Tuesday’s news shows the company is making TV engagement, measurement, and monetization one of the core pillars of its business going forward.
It’s not surprising, since social TV is really a business completely built around advertising, and any real consumer pull for social TV is around the watercooler conversation (which is, basically, Twitter and to a lesser extent Facebook).
While the second screen and dedicated social TV app space is starting to see rapid consolidation due to the oversupply of app developers and services in that market, the shelves on the social TV analytics market are actually a little bare, in part because many of the early arrivers like Bluefin locked up many advertisers and agencies as well as made a significant number of patent applications. I imagine these reasons factored into Twitter’s acquisition of Bluefin.
Who’s left in the social TV analytics space? Trendrr is one of the early social TV analytics players and one of the only legitimate ones that is still left, while some of the second-screen players with larger communities (think Zeebox) also offer analytics services, though these are not the core focus.