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Special Project

Special Project
From the 14th Annual Shorty Awards

Bigo Live Presents: BIGO IDOL

Entered in Emerging Platform Partnership


Bigo Live’s mission is to connect the world and share beautiful moments. As an emerging live streaming platform in the US, we took an audit of the social media market, defined our SWOT analysis and identified that in order to obtain and retain user to the platform, we must foster a program that engages our users, making them feel like part of the experience - not just watching it. Insights told us that a proven popular feature within the app is the multi-guest room; so we knew this was a strategic feature to leverage in order to draw attention of users to the growing platform. All this coinciding with efforts to showcase and support our loyal users, we decided to host an engaging singing competition, titled BIGO IDOL, with celebrity star power as judges (and mainstream draw).

The BIGO IDOL campaign set out to showcase KOLs on our platform and have them engage with other BIGO users in the weeks leading up to the competition through the competition day itself. To create further buzz and excitement, the competition would be decided by celebrity judge BIGO users: Tamar Braxton, American singer and television personality; DJ Whoo Kid, American–Haitian Hip Hop DJ and Kreesha Turner, Canadian/Jamaican recording artist and songwriter.

Once we secured the interest of our celebrity judges, their collective reach dictated our goal setting: to get an average 120,000 unique views of the BIGO IDOL finals through our most popular feature: multi-guest room.

Strategy and Execution

Celebrity involvement was the anchor to our initiative so our first plan of action was to identify our celebrity judges and decide how many judges we would have. Given our platform's layout, we knew that three is the perfect number to showcase BIGO's unique multi-guest, on screen feature, and that the three judges needed to be high reaching music talents - it is a singing competition, after all. Through BIGO’s talent team’s vetting and outreach program, we negotiated and signed contracts with Kreesha Turner, DJ Whoo Kid and Tamar Braxton. 

Next, we needed to figure out the timing. We wanted BIGO IDOL to take place at a time when people craved new content the most, therefore being susceptible to tuning into a new show; that time was late spring/early summer as summer travels have not yet begun, and tv series tend to go on a hiatus around this time, leaving people needing more entertainment. 

In "Stage One”, which began on May 13 and lasted through May 23, 159 community sub-groups, known as ‘families’, who each nominated their most talented broadcaster to represent their group in the singing competition. 

Each nominated performer performed on the Livehouse channel. Fan votes were tallied in our livehouse voting box feature to determine winners on each day; the top 10 votes each day (50 total) would advance to phase 2. During this stage, we also began our broader audience promotion of the competition: with designed tiles, we announced BIGO IDOL on our Bigo Live US Instagram account on May 10, and secured an exclusive interview with Entertainment Tonight and Tamar Braxton to promote this competition. Our celebrity judges were also promoting BIGO IDOL to their followers; for example DJ Whoo Kid, who had special guest Wiz Khalifa on during one of his live streams, drummed up buzz in advance of BIGO IDOL. 

On the day “Stage Two” began, May 28, we compiled a sizzle reel of performances and shared it across our owned digital platforms, which was like our version of a TV show's recap from “last week's episode”. In this stage, the fan voting continued and we went from top 50 to a top 4 each day (total of 20) based on real time voting. Excitement was starting to build across the platform for the “champions” of each family and we capitalized with in-app promotions to encourage watching and community support. 

Next came the third stage, the finals. On June 10, the two day stream went live with the 20 finalists performing in front of the celebrity judges. Day two saw the finalists cut down to 10, as determined by a combination of the judges and the Bigo Live community votes. With the three celebrity judges listening intently and giving feedback in real time, the engaging event crowned singer Khemmie (BIGO ID: Khemmiesings) as the ultimate winner. She won a life changing amount of 1,000,000 “beans” (Bigo Live’s in-app currency that can be cashed out and converted to real money.) 


We were beyond thrilled not only at the anecdotal comments from participants and celebrity judges like: “I was transported, I forgot I was on an app” or “you know its good when the judges start speaking in another language” that underscored the joy and excitement users were having throughout the campaign, but also the metrics that were captured throughout BIGO IDOL’s 252 total hours of streaming. Engagement rates during BIGO IDOL finals surpassed the average of any other multi-guest rooms to date. Our retention demonstrated that users who watched BIGO IDOL content came back to the app 28% more than normal to watch the action unfold, making it the highest viewed event on Bigo Live platform in 2021. 

All in all, we saw a total of 300,000 unique views for the BIGO IDOL finals, a mind blowing 150% above the goal we set to achieve. 

We can confidently say we met and exceeded our objectives of retaining users, bringing the BIGO community together through our most popular features and having KOLs engage with other BIGO users.


Video for Bigo Live Presents: BIGO IDOL

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Bigo Live


Entry Credits