“It was the great meshing of two properties, taking music and film and having such great synergy. Together we’re stronger than maybe we were independently.”
The speaker is NBC Universal Digital Distribution VP of Marketing Stacy Melle, and the other property she’s referring to is Music Choice. the award-winning multiplatform (TV, online, mobile) music network. Its free video-on-demand network is No. 1 in the country with more than 2 billion orders to date.
The collaboration of the two companies on a campaign called “Music & Movies” has been recognized as one of the first-place winners in the CTAM On-Demand/Multiplatform Case Study Competition at Summit ’08.
NBC Universal was looking for a way to reposition films that had modest prospects in the on-demand platform.
“These lower-box-office titles are always a bit of a conundrum to market. They performed poorly in the box office; therefore, the way the model goes, the projection in the VOD world is also low,” Ms. Melle said. “Yet those are often the titles that have the greatest potential because they are underexposed and because they are easy to discover with VOD. It’s more of an impulse buy.”
“NBC came after Music Choice because we noticed the commonality of these three films with music. They all starred a musician,” said Gena Nason, director of marketing for NBC Universal Digital Distribution. Music Choice provided the added promotional content for “Smokin’ Aces” (Alicia Keyes music videos “If I Ain’t Got You” and “Karma”); “Alpha Dog” (Justin Timberlake videos “Sexyback” and “What Goes Around”); “Because I Said So” (Mandy Moore’s “In My Pocket” and “So Real”). In addition Music Choice provided content to help push VOD runs of “Dreamgirls” (Beyonce’s “Listen”); “Music and Lyrics” (Hugh Grant and Drew Barrymore performing “Pop! Goes My Heart”); and “Stomp the Yard” (Chris Brown’s “Run It” and “Gimme That”).
“We know that Music Choice is a prime spot for free on-demand because music is really the No. 1 destination in the on-demand world, so we were eager to solicit their interest and get into this partnership,” Ms. Nason said. “People may remember fleetingly the title or that so-and-so was in it and they missed seeing it. So there is this sweet spot in VOD. Through a promotion like this, these titles are going to jump out of the [interactive program guide] of the VOD menu and get the recognition and come to the forefront of the consumer’s choice.”
“As soon as we got into the rhythm of doing the ‘Movies & Music’ campaign, we realized how well we worked together—not only how well our products worked together, but as companies,” said Karen Doler, manager of PR and communications for Music Choice. “We have now sat down a couple more times to see where our slates cross over and where we can replicate this and make it more multiplatform, make it bigger.”
Recognition from CTAM is icing on the cake for both companies.
“We’re thrilled because it’s an honor to be recognized in the case-study competition,” Ms. Nason said. “It’s nice to be coveted for your artistic endeavors and your creative, but to have an organization as prestigious as CTAM telling you your strategy makes the most sense … and you’re a case study the rest of the industry should follow—that’s the highest honor that we could get.”
“From Music Choice’s perspective, we were thrilled to be recognized,” said Christina Tancredi, the company’s executive VP. “It’s really exciting to see the success of this partnership, and it’s really nice to be recognized among our peers.”
“Based upon the unprecedented success of this great partnership with Music Choice and the MSOs’ embracing of the campaign, I think that we will continue to have dialogue with Music Choice about future opportunities where we can mesh music with movies. It is a winning formula,” Ms. Melle said.