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BizReport : Advertising : September 14, 2011


How one TV network is using social to engage with programming

As more people watch video and television programming from DVRs and online venues many are wondering if the traditional ad is dead. Likely the ad isn't dead - television isn't going anywhere - but brands need to find new ways to engage. One way? Make viewing social; here is how one network is doing it.

by Kristina Knight

Tonight marks the season finale of Spike TV's "Deadliest Warrior" show, but in addition to the cliff-hangar, the show is offering marketers a look into how the network is driving engagement through social offerings. Partnering with audience participation hub Loyalize, Spike is allowing viewers to engage and participate in the show - they can 'see' their actions, comment on the show, post opinions and talk to other viewers through computer, gaming consoles and mobile devices.

But other shows have done this? Not quite this way.

"This is not a 'text in your vote and sit back and watch' kind of thing. It's a living, breathing tool to gauge the audience sentiment about what they are seeing throughout the show," said Jon Slusser, SVP of Spike Digital Entertainment. "Real-time, visible fan participation has been written in as a key component of this live broadcast. We finally have a technology as reactive and immediate as real life in action, allowing our hosts to respond to audience input and influence the show itself. We can't wait."

Todd Greene, CEO of Loyalize said, "For the first time on live television, fans can participate in a way that instantly makes them part of Spike TV's hit series "Deadliest Warrior," on-air, as it's happening. They can experience the host's reaction to their opinions. Equally exciting is the ability for broadcasters and brands to view fan engagement - like a two-way mirror between show and audience."

The show's host will push real-time polls to viewers, encouraging them to share their thoughts; the hosts will also share streaming viedeo, promotional rewards and other types of content, hopefully pushing engagement even higher.

The live show broadcasts at 9PM Eastern, tape delayed to the Pacific Time Zone.

Tags: Loyalize, online video, social video, Spike TV, video ads, video trends










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