Last week while I was out of town the Church of the Customer blog weighed in on the subject of TV shows and evangelism. Their main example was NBC’ The Biggest Loser and the message boards and organized screenings (web-enabled) surrounding the show.
I’m no genius at what I do, but most of these seem fairly standard to the way most (but not all) network and cable original series operate their web sites and coordinating content/community. The difference here is that, to borrow from Gladwell, The Biggest Loser reached some kind of tipping point where fans really wanted to reach out and experience the show together.
In my opinion, a lot of shows could try to organize similar efforts and not receive the same kind of pay-off/buy-in. Not every show has the kind of rabid fan potential that would ignite this kind of fire.
In the end, I think this is more a function of the show and it’s viewers than any specific strategy or tactic on the part of NBC. Good for them for enabling it to happen, but the show and the fans just used the tools available to make this push. If NBC hadn’t provided it, I think the fans would have self-organized themselves.
I could encourage fans of TBS shows, movies and originals to have viewing parties all I wanted, but if the show weren’t compelling or if the fans were passive it wouldn’t be a hit. Simple as that.
The technology and the broadcaster are merely the conduit here. It’s the people that make Immedia (see previous post) so powerful and if they don’t already like you, nothing you do is going to mobilize them. Just because we make it easy for folks to pass along information or join us in enjoying our favorite tv show/website/album, doesn’t mean anyone will take advantage of that ability.