Best of the Week: Snapchat goes to Hollywood, Brits throw a party and we get Trump’ed
If you’re reading this, we can only hope you’re sitting poolside, feet up, shades on. The week is behind you and you’ve earned a little sand between your toes. Here are a few of the best stories from the week that was here at Digiday. If you missed them the first time around, they’re still news to you.
Drag queens, parrots and hog roasts
This is what summer agency outings look like in the U.K. If you need us we’ll be on the next flight across the pond:
Snapchat gets ready for its closeup
In a bit of a scoop, Digiday learned this week that Snapchat is in touch with Hollywood about bringing shows to the platform. The messaging and media app is out looking for deals with major networks and studios that would transform the Discover section, where publishers including People and Cosmopolitan and Refinery29 host daily channels.
Snapchat is reportedly sending Nick Bell, its head of content, to do the negotiating to lure more talent to Discover. “There is a lot of talk around doing shows and bringing in Hollywood,” said one source familiar with Snapchat’s pitch to networks. But — and there is always a but — “the question is how to make money from it.”
As part of an independent media company in Atlantic Media, business news brand Quartz doesn’t have tens of millions in venture backing to fall back on. That’s both a blessing and a curse, Quartz publisher and co-president Jay Lauf said on this week’s Digiday Podcast.
“Some resource constraint is a really good thing,” Lauf said. “It makes you focus.”
Listen to a snippet below — or hear the whole thing here.
If you can’t beat ’em, hire ’em
NBC owns the exclusive rights to air the 2016 Rio Olympics. But that’s not stopping the network from getting by with a little help from its friends: For an Olympics-themed Snapchat Discover pop-up channel, NBC is bringing 12 BuzzFeed video producers to Rio to create as many as 20 pieces of content per day. It has also hired a slew of social influencers, including The Fine Brothers and Flula, to create videos promoting the games.
It is a play, of course, for younger eyeballs. “When we market the games, we sell it based on a household rating. And in order to get a household rating, you try to get as many old people as you can to watch,” John Miller, CMO of NBC Olympics, told our ace video gumshoe reporter Sahil Patel. This “ages up” most of the marketing NBC does to grab TV viewers for its Olympics coverage. But 12- to 34-year-olds are also a priority for the company, and it believes the best way to reach them is by enlisting the voices that they already listen to on a daily basis.
The right side of history
We were pleased to have the leadership of Sax, a Los Angeles-based branding and marketing firm — with clients including the Golden State Warriors, Howard University and the State of California — write up the agency argument for brands to chime in on Black Lives Matter.
“Do we advise our clients, whether they are in education, sports, or other sectors to speak up? Yes!” write Kara Sax and Tamara Keller. “Not only because the minority dollar is increasingly powerful but also because we refuse to believe it’s bad business to stand up against injustice.”
This is Jordan Valinsky, our crack Twitter outrage correspondent:
He is not actually a “fat pig.” But that’s what a new Donald Trump insult generator called him. “Trump Yourself” is a single-serve website that stamps Snapchat-like filters on your face with Trump’s insults. It was released by Hillary Clinton’s team this week to draw attention to the more hateful things the Republican nominee has said over the past several months.
It’s also a clever gambit in that it requires logging in with Facebook credentials. As in most things digital, this is all about the data. While the app doesn’t post to Facebook automatically, registering passes along the user’s email address to the Clinton campaign. Email remains a powerful tool for campaigns.
This was Jordan’s last week at Digiday and we will miss him. Join us in wishing him the best of luck as he heads off to CNNMoney. Fat pig.
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