Eurovision 2018: Second Rehearsal Stats Analysis

Event: Eurovision 2018  Category: Eurovision  Published: Mon 7th May 2018 14:08

People often try to analyse social media stats to gain an advantage in betting markets, or just to see how their favourite contestants are doing. However, the stats can often be misleading if this is done manually. Take YouTube for example, a video uploaded 25 hours ago and a video uploaded 47 hours ago will both have Uploaded: 1 day ago under the listing, despite one video having been up for almost double the time.

TellyStats takes a different approach by collecting social media stats at exact times using automated scripts. This ensures that if we want the metrics of a video 24 hours after it was uploaded, we get those metrics right down to the second, this eliminating confusion and bias.

We analysed each country's Second Rehearsal YouTube video and took stats exactly 24 hours after the upload time and found some interesting results that are worth sharing - particularly if you're betting on these markets. These are untested stats, the first time we've taken them so it's up to you to decide if you want to take action based on the results.

We took the Views, Likes and a Combined total (which is Views * Likes, the result is then divided by 100,000 for legibility). We also included Dislikes just for fun, they're not so relevant as Eurovision is a positive vote event, effectively you're voting to save a contestant, not eliminate but worth adding just to see. Click on the column headers to snap the data into descending order.

Semi Final 1
Views Likes Combined* Dislikes
Cyprus 272,736 7,767 21,183 770
Israel 270,385 6,396 17,293 3,784
Greece 208,242 6,337 13,196 861
Czech Republic 142,625 3,934 5,610 953
Estonia 116,962 4,561 5,334 716
Azerbaijan 100,038 4,807 4,808 543
Croatia 130,245 3,584 4,667 526
Bulgaria 111,061 3,994 4,435 819
Belarus 102,081 3,681 3,757 938
Finland 118,941 3,073 3,655 777
Lithuania 90,220 3,229 2,913 494
Albania 78,461 2,818 2,211 440
Belgium 89,450 2,414 2,159 4,208
FYR Macedonia 98,706 1,936 1,910 1,745
Ireland 61,542 2,875 1,769 386
Austria 65,034 2,038 1,325 536
Switzerland 54,735 2,379 1,302 224
Armenia 60,367 2,064 1,245 644
Iceland 55,088 1,281 705 663
* Combined Totals are: Views * Likes the result is then divided by 100,000 for legibility.
Semi Final 1 Analysis:
  • The most obvious result is that Cyprus has beaten Israel on all metrics. The Views are actually very close but it only serves to highlight that Israel only got 82% the Likes of Cyprus. Take a look at Israel's Dislikes too.
  • Belgium's surprisingly poor results, both Views and Likes are outside the Top 10 and to top it off, it got the highest number of Dislikes. In fact, it has the second highest ratio of Likes:Dislikes of all stats in this article (behind Russia). This strongly suggests that Belgium are in serious trouble for qualification and the value may lie in Azerbaijan, FYR Macedonia and Lithuania - particularly as FYR Macedonia is currently 8/1 to qualify.
  • Viewers aren't impressed with what they've seen from Bulgaria's rehearsal footage and it suggests that the critique of the staging being too dark and disconnecting may have some merit.
  • We tipped Greece as a contender in our review and the strong showing seems to suggest there may be something behind it, it's even smashed the Czech Republic's stats despite how much of a favourite it is.
  • Switzerland's "To Qualify" odds plummeted recently from 4/1 now at evens, these stats suggest that it's as unpopular as ever. Similarly Armenia and Austria backers have cause for concern.

Semi Final 2
Views Likes Combined* Dislikes
Ukraine 119,300 5,963 7,114 438
Moldova 85,713 4,195 3,596 1,021
Poland 96,274 3,608 3,474 669
Russia 119,354 2,131 2,543 4,685
Sweden 90,951 2,636 2,397 1,777
Norway 88,142 2,304 2,031 2,479
Slovenia 70,598 2,435 1,719 374
Australia 76,450 2,014 1,540 1,370
Malta 68,721 2,189 1,504 539
Denmark 59,709 2,211 1,320 378
Latvia 63,331 1,928 1,221 418
Hungary 54,086 2,247 1,215 766
The Netherlands 62,953 1,818 1,144 827
Romania 53,754 1,969 1,058 532
San Marino 56,803 1,736 986 757
Serbia 55,978 1,670 935 584
Montenegro 34,602 1,216 421 400
Georgia 34,681 1,113 386 642
* Combined Totals are: Views * Likes the result is then divided by 100,000 for legibility.
Semi Final 2 Analysis
  • The most obvious thing here is how utterly terrible the stats are compared to the first semi. It almost looks like a mistake, but no, all the stats were taken in the same way after an exact 24 hours had passed. So what happened?
  • The frontrunners are supposed to be Norway, Sweden, Australia and The Netherlands. All 4 countries' rehearsals disappointed viewers, as evidenced by the high Dislike count on all of them and the video comments. Norway actually got more Dislikes than Likes. Reading the comments on Norway's video suggests that outside the Eurovision bubble, this shouldn't be anywhere near 2nd favourite to win.
  • More evidence that the stats aren't wrong is that the second and third tier competitors weren't affected, they all got the stats counts you'd expect - this has allowed Moldova and Ukraine to present themselves as potential contenders to win this semi. Ukraine has the last slot in the running order with an energetic routine and the highest stats and Moldova has a great staging concept.
  • Russia received the highest proportion of Dislikes than any act this year, it's high View count could either be because of the high Russian diaspora - or it could be people looking for 'car-crash' viewing. This is an example where context matters, I think this is car crash viewing.
  • Could Slovenia actually qualify? Their "To Qualify" odds are currently 11/2, the YouTube video comments are universally positive - and Slovenia sing second-to-last. Surely worth a gamble.

Big 5 + Portugal
Views Likes Combined* Dislikes
Spain 196,976 21,927 43,191 1,299
France 100,799 3,387 3,414 670
Italy 90,758 3,807 3,455 721
Germany 66,855 2,686 1,796 387
Portugal 74,041 2,349 1,739 512
United Kingdom 69,862 2,073 1,448 487
* Combined Totals are: Views * Likes the result is then divided by 100,000 for legibility.
Big 5 + Portugal Analysis:
  • I questioned in our review if punters had taken their eye off the ball with Spain in favour of other acts that released their songs later on and these stats suggest this may be the case. They've smashed the Likes count (which are arguably the more important metric) of all other countries in the competition, the nearest competitor, Cyprus only got 35% the number of Likes despite having 72% more Views. Spain also require the fewest number of Views for each 1 Like out of all competitors, just 9 Views per Like, it's nearest competitor required 20. Don't forget, the official video for Spain's song also got the second-highest number of Views and Likes after 7 days of all competitors too. Spain currently trades at 94/1 and whether or not you feel that social media stats are worth much, this has to give food for thought, perhaps as a potential back-to-lay at least. Some negatives to this are that the staging is pretty horrendous and they've just drawn a first-half running order for the final.

If you think these numbers are flawed, let's look at another set of data. We took the current market leaders and stuck them into Google Trends - we also included Spain because of the interesting numbers it generated in the YouTube tables. As you can see, searches for Spain have been consistently popular throughout the contest so far, second only to Israel. Cyprus' burst of popularity is a recent phenomenon. There has been a lot of hype for various countries this year, seemingly at random - all of this data may be stripping away hype and showing us where the popularity really lies. Feel free to visit our Google Trends page to play with this a bit more.

Before you go rushing off to gamble your mortgage, a word of caution. Stats here, and anywhere on this site should be read as a general guideline, context is always the most important, unquantifiable metric. This is the first year we've taken Rehearsal metrics so we've no idea yet how/if they correlate to reality. There is generally an incredibly strong and undeniable correlation between social media stats and reality TV results, but you should add a margin-of-error you feel comfortable with. TellyStats monitors various metrics to give as holistic a view as possible - with new metrics coming soon that provide ever more accurate results. As with last year, we'll be monitoring the Semis and the Grand Final of Eurovision live on the night, in such a difficult year to call, you can't afford not to be here.


LatviaMon 7th May 2018 21:14

Brilliant article, thanks. I've thought all the way through that some in semi 2 are overrated. I've also been following youtube which confirmed that idea, but I didn't do an exact equal interval for all like you which is a much better stat..
(I couldn't log in with Firefox).