On the 7th and 8th March, an interview of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex by Oprah Winfrey was aired across the world. The interview pulled in 17.1 million viewers in the USA, and 11.1 million people watched it on ITV in the UK.
If you weren’t one of the 11 million to watch in the UK, the interview revealed many struggles Meghan and Harry have faced since getting married. They spoke freely about the royal family, the institution they felt trapped in and the role the British press played in their decision to leave. By telling their side of the story, they inevitably discussed individual members of the royal family and their experiences with them.
You may have read our previous insight piece on the most searched members of the royal family following The Crown season 4. We have revisited the same data to find out which members of the royal family were searched the most during the interview on Monday night.
Most searched: Meghan Markle, of course
Meghan had the highest number of searches while the show aired, with 1.7 million people searching for her page on Wikipedia. As expected, her husband, Prince Harry, was the second most searched with 847,561 page views.
As the interview developed there were references to Prince Harry’s mother, Princess Diana, and viewers took to the web to find out more about her, making Diana the third most searched royal during the interview, with 633,636 searches.
Even though the Queen was mentioned throughout the interview, as the head of the royal family, she was one of the least searched royal members. It was her children and grandchildren that received the most interest.
Ranking of the most searched royal family members during the interview:
One thing that was prevalent throughout the interview was the use of words “institution” and “firm” by Meghan and Harry. Google search data for both of these keywords grew to 100% while viewers were watching the interview across the world.
Highest increase from the previous week: Royal Institution
Wikipedia page views for Royal Institution grew by 13,558%, the highest percentage increase from the following week. It seemed many viewers wanted to find out more about the business side of the royal family. Overall, the Wikipedia page was searched 14,751 times during the interview.
Again, Meghan’s page had the largest increase in the family from the previous week with 7,086%, but it was her son, Archie, who followed closely behind with a 6,594% increase in searches, making him more popular with viewers than more senior members of the royal family.
Catherine, Harry and Meghan’s sister-in-law, received the third highest increase (3,367%) with many eager to find out more about her after Meghan shared her side of the bridesmaid dress incident that has been widely publicised by the British media.
Ranking of the highest increase in searches compared to the previous week (1st March):
The interview inspired viewers to learn more
Searches for the Wikipedia pages of royal family members increased in total to 6.3 million during the interview with Oprah Winfrey. This shows that viewers want more information and context. The royal family are known globally, and viewers are clearly searching for answers, especially looking at the “institution” and “firm” in more detail.
Data was taken from Wikipedia page views, and Google trends search data.