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2021 MTV Video Music Awards

4 min read

| September 20, 2021

Last Sunday, the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards dominated conversation online. The star-studded event was filled with awards and performances, and fans took to the internet to weigh in on the winners, show support for their favorite artists, and comment on the questionable fashion choices of the celebrity guests. Below, we look at how the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards rank compared to other top airings of the year, how fans Emotionally Reacted to the event, and which artists saw the biggest increase in conversation compared to the previous year. 

TL; DR

  • The MTV Video Music awards continue to rank among the top airings of the year, ranking as the second most engaging award show of the year, and the third most engaging airing of any type this year

  • Emotional Reactions surrounding the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards were overwhelmingly positive with fans sounding off about their favorite artists winning awards, and negative commentary focused on the outfits of celebrity attendees

  • Justin Bieber, Olivia Rodrigo, Lil Nas X, and Normani all saw noticeable increases in their share of conversation during the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards; BTS, Lady Gaga, and Ariana Grande all saw a decrease in conversation this year

The MTV Video Music Awards ranked among the top airings of the year in driving Total Tweets, Emotional Reactions, and positive conversation around the program

The MTV Video Music Awards were able to drive an extremely high level of engagement this year, earning 1,119,313 Emotional Reactions and 2,650,125 Total Tweets, for a Reaction Rate of 42%. This ranks as the second highest-engaging award show of the year, second only to the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards. 

  • The 2021 MTV Video Music Awards also rank as the third most engaging airing overall in 2021, with only Super Bowl LV and the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards outperforming the VMA’s this year.

  • Of the top 10 airings in 2021, the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards were able to generate the highest Love Reaction Rate, with 53% of all Emotional Reactions surrounding the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards showing Love.

Source: Canvs Explore, 2021 Award Shows to Date through 9/14/21Read As: The 2021 MTV Video Music Awards earned the second highest Total Tweets in their airing window this year, with 1.1M Emotional Reactions, 2.7M Total Tweets, and a Reaction Rate of 42%

Source: Canvs Explore, 2021 Award Shows to Date through 9/14/21

Read As: The 2021 MTV Video Music Awards earned the second highest Total Tweets in their airing window this year, with 1.1M Emotional Reactions, 2.7M Total Tweets, and a Reaction Rate of 42%

Emotional Reactions around the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards showed overwhelming Love and Congratulations for fans’ favorite artists

Top Emotional Reactions surrounding the 2021 Video Music Awards include Love (51% of all Emotional Reactions), Congrats (13% of all Emotional Reactions), and Enjoy (5% of all Emotional Reactions). Fans also showed Emotional Reactions such as Cried (5% of all Emotional Reactions) and Crazy (4% of all Emotional Reactions) reacting to some of the biggest and craziest moments of the night. Overall, 95% of all Emotional Reactions surrounding the awards were positive.

  • The most positive commentary surrounding the awards was focused on celebrating the winners of the night

    • Verbatims:

      • Love: “DOJA CAT AND SZA WON HELL YEAH”

      • Congrats: “SHE WON CONGRATS LIV YOU DESERVED IT YAYSYSHSY #VMAs”

      • Enjoy: “billy porter remains a delight”

      • Cried: “Doja cat and them wild VMA looks 😭😭”

      • Crazy: “OMGG NORMANI SERVED US JANET JACKSON WOULD YOU MIND!!!!!!!!!! #VMAS”

  • The majority of negative commentary surrounding the awards was focused on the outfits of the guests and musicians, or fans showing disappointment around their favorite artist losing.

    • Verbatims:

      • Hate: “Justin Bieber looks a mess lol”

      • Dislike: “Megan fox VMA fit not good”

      • Dislike: “Leave The Door Open was robbed. #VMAs #SomgOfTheYear”

Source: Canvs Content Page, 2021 MTV Video Music Awards Airing WindowRead As: 50.5% of the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards’ Emotional Reactions showed the emotion Love

Source: Canvs Content Page, 2021 MTV Video Music Awards Airing Window

Read As: 50.5% of the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards’ Emotional Reactions showed the emotion Love

Justin Bieber, Olivia Rodrigo, Lil Nas X, and Normani saw the most conversation growth during the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards compared to the previous year

Justin Bieber (+4% conversation share increase from previous year), Olivia Rodrigo (+3% conversation share increase from previous year), and Lil Nas X (+3% conversation share increase from previous year) all saw large increases in conversation share during the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards due to their successful album releases and award wins. Normani also saw an increase in conversation share compared to the previous year mainly due to her performance during the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards.

Despite the BTS Army showing up once again in 2021, BTS saw the largest decrease in conversation share during the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards, while still being the largest driver of conversation this year. Lady Gaga (-3% conversation share decrease from previous year) and Ariana Grande (-1% conversation share decrease from previous year) also saw decreases in their conversation volume during the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards.

Verbatims:

  • Justin Bieber: “The Justin Bieber awards are on DONT bother me”

  • Olivia Rodrigo: “OLIVIA JUST WON HER FIRST VMA WHAT IS LIFE”

  • Lil Nas X: “LIL NAS X VMA SHOWER SCENE WAS SO OH MY GOD”

  • Normani: “yall now see why i stan @Normani!? WAKE UP BABES #VMAs”

  • Doja Cat: “MY GIRL DOJA LOOOKS SO COOL #VMAs”

  • Camilla Cabello: “We are not ok CAMILA CABELLO #CamilaVMAs #vmas”

Source: Canvs Content Page, 2020 & 2021 MTV Video Music Awards Airing Window PerformanceRead As: Justin Bieber’s Share of Driver conversations grew nearly 4% compared to the previous year, the highest growing artist from 2020 to 2021. Ariana Grande conversation fell 1% in 2021 compared to the 2020 awards.

Source: Canvs Content Page, 2020 & 2021 MTV Video Music Awards Airing Window Performance

Read As: Justin Bieber’s Share of Driver conversations grew nearly 4% compared to the previous year, the highest growing artist from 2020 to 2021. Ariana Grande conversation fell 1% in 2021 compared to the 2020 awards.

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