The 2013 MTV Video Music Awards brought out the biggest stars in the business ... and one of the biggest audiences in the show's history.
Sunday night's show garnered a total audience of 10.1 million viewers — a 66-percent increase over last year's show — making it cable's top-rated entertainment telecast of the year among viewers aged 12-34, and earned a 7.8 rating in the same demo, a 47-percent compared to last year's show.
The encore presentation of the VMAs earned an additional 2.8 million viewers, bringing the grand total to 12.9 million total viewers across both airings on MTV. Ratings for the MTV Video Music Awards Pre Show had 4.6 million viewers, and earned a 3.6 rating in the 12-34 demo.
Digitally, things were equally as big. During the two-hour telecast, social media exploded, as fans reacted to VMA performances and winners in ways we never thought possible. The show generated 120 national and worldwide trending topics on Twitter and 1.2 million Instagram likes. And during one particular performance — that would be the combo of Miley Cyrus' twerk-tastic "We Can't Stop" and Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" — you actually set a record for most tweets per minute: an astounding 360,000, shattering the previous record holder, Beyoncé's Super Bowl performance.
And both VMA performers and winners benefitted from all that exposure. Justin Timberlake — who took home the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award and delivered a career-spanning performance (and bonus 'NSync reunion!) — posted a 1,876 percent increase in sales on iTunes, while Bruno Mars' first-time-on-TV performance of "Gorilla" instantly launched the song onto the iTunes singles chart, and put his Unorthodox Jukebox album back onto the iTunes' album chart Top 10.