For the fifth anniversary of its powerhouse and award-winning Black History Month PSA campaign, AMC Networks sought to create its largest Black History Month initiative to date.
The overall campaign goal was to help reach and inform AMC Networks viewers about the importance of diversity and Black History Month. 2018 marked the fifth year in a row AMC Networks worked with the prestigious Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) to create informative PSAs to help educate 90 million+ viewers about American Black History.
AMC Networks is committed to elevating awareness of Black History Month by sharing poignant and educational stories and messages with viewers across the country. The annual Black History Month PSA campaign launched in 2014 on WE tv. The campaign uses the reach of cable TV to communicate the ever-increasing importance and impact of Black History Month by featuring prominent Congressional leaders discussing the legacy of civil rights advocacy. The PSA campaign has expanded across multi-platform offerings (websites and social media channels), increasing its reach year over year.
The company determined the PSA campaign would feature esteemed members of The Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), and its distribution strategy would be to leverage all of its national networks platforms to drive buzz around the annual celebration. In the past, AMC Networks had tapped WE tv as the central conduit for the campaign. In 2018, AMC Networks expanded the PSA airings to run across all its influential national networks - AMC, BBC AMERICA, IFC, SundanceTV, and WE tv – and all of their related Facebook, Instagram and Twitter platforms - throughout the entire month of February.
To create the campaign, AMC Networks utilized the following tactics:
The PSAs are innovative because viewers hear directly from the leaders themselves, which lends credibility to the campaign and reinforces its importance.
In the PSAs nine members of the Congressional Black Caucus emphasize the importance of honoring Black History Month best in their own words. Here are some examples:
"We have come too far and we are not going back. We are going forward." Congressman John Lewis [GA – 5]
"Black History Month is American history. African Americans have made substantial contributions as far back as this country's inception." Congressman Donald Payne, Jr. [NJ – 10]
"What's important is to look back so that you can look forward. If you don't understand your history, then you don't know where you've been and how far you have to go. And that's why history is so important." Congressman Gregory Meeks [NY – 5]
"They [women] helped advance our civil society and without their contributions we wouldn't be where we are today." Rep. Yvette Clarke [NY – 9]
Of note, the PSA series was anchored to four thematic spots:
The 2018 PSA series helped to educate viewers about Black History month, delivering on the project's objectives and impacting millions of viewers and social media users.
During February 2018, the PSAs aired more than 330 times across AMC, BBC AMERICA, IFC, SundanceTV and WE tv, yielding an on-air value of almost $500,000. The spots were available to over 90 million viewers nationwide, and more than 5.6 million unique visitors through a combination of AMC, BBC AMERICA, IFC, SundanceTV and WE tv's websites and were featured in Cablefax, Politico and Cynopsis.
AMC Networks' 2018 PSA campaign was named a Hermes Creative Award Gold Winner and won the Cablefax FAXIES Award for Corporate Social Responsibility/Green Campaign.