The MTV Video Music Awards have been making music history for over 25 years. And in the midst of a global pandemic, the 2020 show was no different. In a year where the entire digital team worked remotely, we strived to keep the VMAs at the forefront of pop culture relevance with innovative tactics and unique experiences. Challenged to continue a long legacy of shattering expectations, we endeavored to craft unique content strategies for every social platform, create more opportunities for engagement, and find new ways to connect fans with the artists they love.
In a year like no other, the VMAs aspired to bring joy, music and legendary performances to fans. On social, we aimed to go the extra mile with authentic, affecting coverage that resonated with our audience and artists alike, and offered more opportunities to engage and connect. And it goes without saying - we were determined to spread the word that the VMAs were about to BRING THE MUSIC.
THE VMAs ARE COMING: Awareness & Excitement
Announced nominees using Twitter’s new Voice Notes tool - making us the first brand to use the feature for a splashy stunt
Gave fans multiple ways to vote for their fave artists to win a Moonperson: on MTV.com, Twitter chatbot, Instagram, and of course, daily Power Hours that rewarded fans with double the votes.
Amped things up week of show with two social categories, voted on Instagram Stories (Song of Summer and Best Group).
Unveiled a multi-phased approach to Push: Best New Artist voting, starting with top 12 on MTV.com to final three via Twitter Chatbot
Collaborated with sister networks to create complementary digital exclusives, including a RuPaul’s Drag Race “Diva Makeup Tutorial,” increasing awareness across broader audiences
Launched filters on VMA’s Instagram and Facebook giving fans the opportunity to create their own VMA-themed content, find out which nominee they are and more.
SHOW TIME! Real-time Engagement & Wall-To-Wall Coverage
Counted down to air time with The VMA Pre-Show on Twitter Live, featuring performances, interviews and fashion highlights
VMA Stan Cam, a real-time, interactive livestreaming experience on Twitter, polled fans to choose what we should reveal behind the scenes, and featured a live at-home celebrity watch party
Offered exclusive, behind-the-scenes points of view from multiple performers as they prepped for their VMA moments
Launched three Snapchat Highlight Shows over the course of VMA weekend
Released best moments in real time across YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and TikTok
And as always, blitzed real-time coverage across all platforms with cross-brand coverage and support
AFTER THE SHOW: In Case You Missed It
The 2020 VMAs had the most social video views in MTV & ViacomCBS history!
Nielsen’s #1 most social entertainment telecast across all of TV in 2020, and the #1 most social award show of the last two years
It was a year of massive growth: Video views up +72% YOY, Engagements up +174% YOY and Watch Time up +249% YOY.
#VMAs trended in the US for 12 hours, with 3x increased volume vs 2019. It was the #1 trending topic for 4 hours.
Fans still love to help their faves win a Moonperson - unique Voters were up +217% YOY and Total Votes up +223% YOY on MTV.com. Best Group voting on IG stories resulted in the MTV brand account’s 2nd highest-viewed IG story ever.
The @VMA show day IG story is the most viewed Instagram story in MTV history
VMA performances trended in the top three positions on YouTube the day following the show
Digital consumption helped drive "Total Minutes Consumed" of VMAs content across all linear and digital platforms up by 8% year to year, to 1.33 billion. Digital minutes alone were up +249%
The VMAs drove over 1M new followers for MTV brand social accounts in August 2020—a record month for the brand and nearly 2X any other month on record.