Facebook Strategic Partnerships Lead for Music and Entertainment Charles Porch talked celebrities, fan engagement, and TV-show promotion with Variety Editor-in-Chief, Digital Andrew Wallenstein at the Variety Entertainment and Technology Summit last week in Marina Del Rey, Calif.
Facebook has transitioned from a passive receptacle of social activity to actively partnering with studios to create it. Facebook is proving effective at driving tune-in to shows, and then keeping the halo going post-show.
Porch is playing a key role in Facebook’s transition. His team works with celebrities including Madonna and with TV shows from reality TV to scripted dramas, helping them create social engagement programs using Facebook and Instagram.
Facebook and Instagram are used to build buzz before shows air, to drive tune-in during broadcasts, and to keep the buzz going, using the platform as a “proverbial water cooler” where users can discuss the shows after they air.
Porch highlighted the opportunity for TV shows to create communities using hashtags and pages for fans to follow, which remind them of the show throughout the week. He highlighted two examples:
“Dancing with the Stars”: Facebook is running a #DWTS hashtag program with the popular reality-competition show. #DWTS has a unique opportunity to create interest in the show before it airs due to the importance of dance rehearsals, Porch said. Fans visit the #DWTS feed on Facebook to see videos of dance rehearsals that happen during the week before the show, and they engage with the show’s content, posting and commenting in reaction to the videos. This engagement spreads throughout the social graph. The result is that a large number of people become emotionally invested in the performances that they have seen rehearsed. People then want to tune in to watch the stars perform live during the show.
CMA Music Festival: Facebook and Instagram helped the Country Music Awards solve an interesting real-time integration challenge. The CMA televises an event call the CMA Music Festival, a huge concert in Nashville, Tenn., attended by tens of thousands of people. But the CMA Music Festival happens months before the Country Music Awards airs on broadcast TV. Social content was captured during the actual concert. Music stars posted to Facebook, took Instagram photos, etc. This social activity was shown on screens at the concert as part of the live experience. It was then reused during the TV broadcast of the show months later. Real-time social activity happening during the broadcast was mixed together with the social content that happened during filming in a way that enhanced the TV viewing experience.
Porch asked the audience to contact him for easy ideas for working with celebrities to promote TV shows. With #DWTS, it was as easy as filming rehearsals and posting videos for content marketing. Celebrities can do additional things such as interviews during and hair and makeup before live shows, during periods when they are sitting in chairs for an hour anyway.
Readers: How often do you engage with the Facebook pages of TV shows or celebrities?
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