MTV Looks to Video and Social for Millennial Super Bowl

We are just hours away from the MTV Awards. I may tune in to see what Hostess Miley Cyrus has up her sleeve. Or I may not. If I choose the latter, I won’t be alone. The core demo of teens and young adults is watching less TV than ever before, which is why the Viacom-owned network has cooked up an elaborate social game for the show. The goal is to steer the bulk of the chatter onto platforms like Twitter and Snapchat.

Periscope. One Small Step for Social Media-Kind...

Periscope. One Small Step for Social Media-Kind…

Twenty-four brands have signed on to sponsor what MTV calls the “millennial Super Bowl.” Eight of those marketers—including Taco Bell, CoverGirl, Verizon, Pepsi and Trojan—are working with Twitter’s Amplify program to work real-time tweets, ads and, for the first time, branded Periscopes, into the chatter about the show.

On Periscope, MTV will push out a livestream from a Taco Bell-sponsored pre-show concert Saturday night. The teams will film backstage interviews and Q&A sessions with bands like Walk the Moon. The livestream will be wrapped with six-second pre-roll ads and sponsored messaging from Taco Bell. It will also be boosted with Promoted Tweets on Twitter.

Meanwhile, Verizon has actress Vanessa Hudgens hosting its livestream, which will include the actress walking the red carpet and backstage happenings. Similar to Taco Bell, Verizon will also buy Twitter ads to get people to tune in.

Like most live events, the goal of co-creating content is to cut through the clutter with creative and targeted social posts crafted on the fly.

In addition to Twitter, Viacom also has a partnership with Snapchat for Sunday’s event. A VMA-themed Live Story will run with four brands—CoverGirl, Verizon, Taco Bell and American Legacy—and be woven into the stream of user-generated photos and videos.

I am curious to see how this will all play out. More than seeing what Nicki Minaj will cook up as the opening act….

Nestlé Takes the Periscope Plunge

Twitter-owned Periscope launched in Marc and since then, brands have been curious (or terrified) about how to turn livestreaming video into ads. Twitter doesn’t offer Periscope ads (just)  yet, but a campaign from Nestlé this weekend shows how marketers can still work slick marketing into the mix.



This Sunday is the Summer Solstice, and Nestlé’s Drumstick brand is marking the holiday with a slew of social video clips that promote the chocolate-topped ice cream cone. Nestlé has hired a handful of notable Periscope personalities to broadcast classic summertime scenes—think backyards and amusement parks—to their followers.

Each stream will include the hashtag #ad in the title of the video to indicate that it’s sponsored, similar to how social media influencers have delineated promotions on Vine, Instagram and Twitter.

Because Periscope accounts are connected to Twitter, the livestreaming app automatically will post a tweet with a link to the real-time broadcasts. Drumstick is buying Promoted Tweets to push such tweets and ultimately drive viewership, and the brand has also hired an additional 100 Twitter influencers to tweet about the ice cream this weekend.

Meanwhile, Drumstick opened its own Periscope account yesterday and will be livestreaming 15 to 20 scenarios on Sunday from beaches, amusement parks, backyards, lakes and on the street in New York City.

Let’s see how this goes!