by Brett Schenker
The Walking Dead is a cultural phenomenon. The property regularly breaks records, whether it’s television ratings, print runs and sell-outs in comics, or winning accolades and awards when it comes to video games. There have been very few series that tap into the cultural zeitgeist and become regular water cooler conversation. With it being Halloween, I felt it appropriate to look at who the fans of The Walking Dead are on Facebook. In this report I lumped in the television show, comic book, video games, books and characters.
What I learned is the breakdown between men and women is very similar to the general comic fan population. Walking Dead fans are 59.38% male and 40.63% females. General comic fans are 57.38% male and 40.98% female. So the two populations are very close when it comes to that.
But, when you look at the different media, they’re not all created equal. The television show skews a bit better even than the percents above, while the comic book series and video games are much mores (and also pretty close to each other).
Here’s how each media shapes up, and I’ve included the general “zombie” genre and “horror” genre as comparison:
We can see that the television break down between men and women is far more even than that of the comic books or video games, and out performs the “zombie” genre as a whole. All fall far behind the “horror” genre which is the MAJORITY female. But, there’s that large difference in media. The delivery of the entertainment is different between television and comics, but the stories and characters are similar. Here’s an example where advertising to one might help the other (ie advertising the comics to the television female fans).
Now, I will say that there’s a chance that since the majority are fans of the television show already, they might not be inclined to also be fans of the comic books, video games, or books, as well, so they might be under reported.
Looking further into into those total populations, there are 400,000 individuals who are fans of the comic book series but NOT the television show, while there are 0 as far as the video games and books. There are 60,000 individuals who are fans of the video games and NOT the comics and the same amount for the books. Finally, there are 160,000 people who are fans of the Walking Dead books, but NOT the video games. Those aren’t numbers to sneeze at.
The story and characters are very similar in the television show, comics, video games and books, HOW all of that is delivered is what’s different. Here’s a perfect example of cross promotion with numbers that would make a huge impact in the comic book industry if they were to be converted and a perfect example of the same property having different audiences depending on how it’s delivered.
A video game playing, comic book reading, pop culture loving, political consultant, Brett runs the website Graphic Policy which mixes comics & politics and works day to day in the political realm. You can follow him on Twitter at @bhschenker or @graphicpolicy