Justin Bieber performing on the 2012 Billboard Music Awards. (Getty Images/courtesy of ABC)
Sunday night's Billboard Music Awards won the night for ABC among adults 18 to 49, according to fast affiliate numbers from Nielsen Media Research. The three-hour telecast was watched by 7.4 million total viewers, with a 2.7 share rating in the 18-to-49 demo, enough to handily beat NBC's finale of "The Celebrity Apprentice" (5.6 million viewers, 1.6 share of 18-to-49-year-olds.)
The Billboard Music Awards were down slightly from 2011, the first telecast since 2006, which averaged 7.9 million total viewers and drew a 2.9 share among 18-to-49-year-olds.
This year's awards drew a high volume of social media chatter, according to data provided by Simply Measured. The most-tweeted moment arrived during Chris Brown's five minute performance of current single "Turn Up The Music," generating 27,713 tweets containing the official hashtag #BBMA. Justin Bieber claimed the second and third most-talked about moments, for his "Social Artist of the Year" award win and performance of "Boyfriend."
Ladies led the conversation, with 68% of social activity coming from females and 32% from males, according to Bluefin Labs. New York led all markets with 13% of the tweets, according to Simply Measured, followed by Atlanta, Los Angeles and Chicago, which each had 6%.
Contributing: Glenn Peoples