The relation between social media and TV became one of RecordTV's specialities. We invested more and more in crossplatform, displaying a lot of social content on TV – mainly as a graphic insertion, like a CG ticker We were quickly becoming a reference on that in 2016. But we needed more to consolidate our place. If you want the lead, you have to shoot to the stars! That was our goal: to elevate our work (that was already acclaimed for its creativity) and build an unique case, that could be the benchmark for this kind of TV/crossplatform interaction.
The kick-off involved, at first, taking a good look at what we already accomplished in 2016. The initial situation was this: we had already used, theoretically, every mechanic available for this kind of CG ticker interaction. Tweets, Facebook comments and Instagram comments on screen (with or without pics); avatar walls; unlockable content with a tweet meter; trending topic alerts; and polls, in many visual solutions. We would keep that. But improve it.
Our thought was “are there any formats that we didn't do yet?" Or even better, that nobody did already? And we found one. Tweets with interactive GIFs, displayed directly on the screen, where the previous simple tweet once was.
To accomplish that goal, we had to develop in-house a system that would get the GIF from the tweet, convert it to a video file and display it as an attached file to the tweet. The first one of its kind. For our crossmedia interactions, we subscribe to a tool called Flowics, which gets the data from social networks and delivers it to our platform.
We, then, trained a specific team to be on the switcher while our shows were being broadcasted. This team would collect GIFs published on Twitter, curate it and display them in real time, on TV. If the show was recorded, they would watch it beforehand and write down the timecode for the clear parts, where we could pop social content up. And then do it live, while the tape was being aired, with our timecode in hand. But always simultaneously.
Bottom line: the public could livetweet the show, using GIFs, and we created a way to display them on the CG ticker, in real time - the show being a live one or even taped.
Our social content, of any kind, was added to a variety of shows, from News (such as Cidade Alerta and SP Record), Entertainment (such as Legendários, Programa da Sabrina, and Programa do Porchat) and Reality Shows (such as A Fazenda, Dancing Brasil, A Casa, and Power Couple). Adding up to 52 hours of social content per week on our broadcasts. Beating the 50 hour per week landmark was a milestone for us – and a way to be sure we set the bar so high that our competitors would have to raise their games to catch up.
Since we put our strategy to an use, we saw a dramatically increase of the same kind of mechanic on our competitors' shows. Sports, entertainment, cable TV. A lot of companies in Brazil started to pay attention in our work, and crossmedia inputs like ours started to pop up everywhere. But we can close 2017 with a certainty: nobody could accomplish the animated GIF yet, less the 50 hours/week of interactive content. That was how we changed the perception of Brazilian TV audience and TV producers about social content on TV – and helped push the integration between platforms forward.