In 2016, reality TV pioneer America's Next Top Model found a new home on VH1 after 22 seasons, and following a decade long run on The CW. Socially, ANTM has always been a dominant series in the space. Following a former cancellation, a new network to call home, and and all-new host + panel, the challenge for ANTM's comeback was to create a holistic social media campaign that introduced loyal viewers to a revamped Top Model on VH1.
ANTM is where high fashion meets high drama. Modern. Chic. Epic.
Our mantra: #WhatsNext.
America's Next Top Model has transformed along with the modeling industry . This season, ANTM was not looking for just a high fashion editorial model or a social media model, it was looking for the model that can do both. Our social strategy embodied the perfect blend of high-fashion, high-drama, and #WhatsNext in the modeling industry.
The marketing for ANTM kicked off with an OOH whisper campaign with simple messaging: "What's Next." Buzz began growing online, with tweeters wondering what in fact was next (some thought it was the new Beyonce album). We had a spark.
Rather than try to keep the new contestants a secret and stress about them getting leaked, we turned that on its head by creating a campaign that would allow the audience's curiosity and enthusiasm to figure out "What's Next" with a social-first puzzle. ANTM social provided fans with personal details ("clues") per contestant which were seeded out across all social platforms, following the branding of the OOH.
Online conversation snowballed week over week as fans exchanged theories as to who the contestants could be. When press announced the finalists on November 14th , ANTM social celebrated with 13 custom animations featuring the contestants and their clues on the @ANTMVH1 Instagram, tagged the contestants in clue posts, and released a tap-to-reveal on Snapchat & Instagram stories to pull the entire reveal together.
Leading to the premiere, ANTM provoked nostalgia by partnering with Dubsmash to release a custom soundboard of past iconic ANTM quotes letting loyal fans know that the high drama was here to stay.
Premiere day kicked-off with the release of an innovative, first-to-market Snapchat lens that gave fans the opportunity to engage with a mini photo shoot, complete with a contact sheet of images they shared to their story.
At the 10pm premiere hour on December 12, ANTM social was LIVE on every platform. On Twitter, we partnered with GIPHY to live-GIF the top moments from the show. We live-snapped, providing humorous pop culture commentary to top dramatic moments. Instagram provided fans with exclusive behind-the-scenes images and Facebook launched a Live poll asking fans what they would bring to the table if they were lucky enough to be a contestant.
As the campaign moved in season, ANTM took advantage of novel social technology at every opportunity, episodically releasing composited 360 photos from photoshoot challenges, Instagram Live & Story takeovers by talent, Live Snapping by former contestant Will Jardell, Live Tweeting and Facebook LIVE videos that aired concurrently with the episode, creating a deep second screen experience. After contestants were eliminated, we featured exclusive Q&As and thank you videos for their fans on Snapchat and Instagram Stories.
This was constantly met with "always-on" community management that showed the fans that ANTM is listening. Not stopping with mere custom responses, custom creative GIFs were produced directly in response to audience members, demonstrating how deep the ANTM social commitment was to its audience.
The results were nothing but TOP.
Superfans turned into armchair detectives, picking apart our clues to uncover the contestants before the official announcement--some even getting it right (and the bragging rights with it). This had the effect of redirecting social conversation away from the new panelists and towards the mystery of who would be involved in the upcoming season, flipping negative chatter into positive, forward looking conversation leading to premiere.
ANTM received press from Lost Remote and caught the attention of YouTube creator Will Jardell, a former ANTM contestant and current influential voice in the ANTM fandom, who posted a vlog about the clues and congratulated ANTM for "finally getting a good marketing strategy."
Premiere night drew in 1.7Million viewers and on social...
To date ANTM social has had….
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