Theatrical Video Marketing: 5 Ways to Make the Most of the 2018 Awards Season

Theatrical Video Marketing: 5 Ways to Make the Most of the 2018 Awards Season

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The new year is here and as savvy video marketers, you likely have a solid idea — if not a completed plan — for what your video marketing strategy will look like in 2018. For some of you, this will look like beefing up your current video output, or honing in on your editing or storytelling skills. Others of you are focusing on how to drive more engagement with your content. But have you thought about a popular tent pole event happening in 2018 which could benefit your brand if integrated into your video strategy?

This coming year brings one of the biggest anticipations in the entertainment industry: the 2018 awards season. People around the world always tune into these shows, as entertainment is one of the biggest genres of most-watched video content. It only makes sense then to see if your brand can’t include the awards season in your upcoming content for 2018. The rest of this post will help you do just that, so read on for some strategies on how to capitalize on the 2018 awards season and use it to your brand’s video marketing advantage!

What Audiences Are Looking for in Awards Season Content

Before we dive into the how-to portion of this article, let’s check out some of the nitty-gritty data Tubular recently uncovered about awards season video content in its Q3 2017 State of Online Video (SOOV) report. This information is vital to understanding what specific types of content work best in attracting viewers to awards season videos, and knowing these preferences will definitely help you better plan your 2018 video marketing efforts.

For starters, let’s take a look at previous awards season content on Facebook. On that social media and video platform, audiences predominantly preferred watching acceptance speeches and “celebrity intel” content (videos which provide interesting facts about a particular celebrity’s life and/or how they rose to fame). According to Tubular data, these categories were the most viewed out of all the awards season content on Facebook at 18.6% each, or 37.2% of the total views on awards season videos. Acceptance speeches also garnered the highest proportion of views at 29% compared to celebrity intel clips at 20%.

As an example, when we searched for awards season content in Tubular’s software and looked for the most-watched clip on Facebook from 2017, the result was Matthew McConaughey’s acceptance speech from this year’s Academy Awards show. Currently, the clip uploaded by news outlet A Plus has roughly 116 million total views with an average 30-day view count (V30) of 27.1 million. Consequently, the second most-viewed acceptance speech on Facebook this year was uploaded by The Hollywood Reporter and featured Meryl Streep getting political during the Golden Globes; this video saw 17.6 million views and a V30 of 17.3 million.

Tubular’s Q3 2017 SOOV report discovered that despite the popularity of both acceptance speeches and celebrity intel content on Facebook, no one particular category dominated across all awards shows. For example, content generated around the Golden Globe Awards included videos about both acceptance speeches and celebrity intel, but content about memorable presenters was also one of the top themes. Viewers watching content about the Recording Academy’s Grammys were highly interested in videos about fashion and performances as well as celebrity intel. And as for the Academy Awards, acceptance speeches, performances, and movie trailers were the top three categories of videos people wanted to watch.

Now we move on to awards season content on YouTube, which shares some similarities with popular awards videos on Facebook. For example, one of the top categories on YouTube is also acceptance speeches, which accounts for 19.3% of the top viewed awards season videos on that platform. However, the honor of the most popular category goes to recap videos, which dominates the most frequently among top-viewed awards season content at 25.3%! Audiences on YouTube also love watching performance clips (15.3%) and red carpet or behind-the-scenes interviews with their favorite celebrities (14.7%).

One of the most popular recap videos on YouTube comes from Wendy Williams, host of the Wendy Williams Show on networks like FOX and BET. Her Golden Globes recap from January of this year currently boasts more than 413K views, despite its 20-minute length. The video also had an impressive V30 of 404K and a higher-than-average engagement rate of 1.2x. Clearly, Williams’s thoughts and commentary on the Golden Globes resonated strongly with her viewers. Check out the clip below:

There’s no question, though, that YouTube audiences love watching acceptance speeches and performance videos. Tubular’s Q3 2017 SOOV report revealed how the highest share of total views across all awards season content goes to the acceptance speech category at a solid 27%. Performance videos weren’t too far behind at a 25% share of the total views. Simply put, if you know your brand wants to create awards season clips for your YouTube channel, it’s a very safe bet to publish content related to acceptance speeches or performances at almost any awards show.

That being said, while acceptance speeches dominated across content about the Golden Globes, Grammys, and Academy Awards, you could consider other categories of content which performed well, too. YouTube viewers were highly interested in recaps and fashion clips for the Golden Globe Awards, while they preferred behind-the-scenes and performance content for the Grammys. Meanwhile, the Academy Awards attracted high viewership on humor clips from comedians and presenters during the show, as well as on the musical performances from Oscar-nominated songs.

The key takeaway from all of this data is different awards shows generate interest in different categories of videos, especially on Facebook. As a video marketer, you should cater to the viewing preferences of audiences based on a particular awards event instead of creating generalized awards season clips which may not resonate with a specific show’s fans. On YouTube in particular, while acceptance speeches are most popular, your brand doesn’t have to stick to creating videos solely around this category; instead, as we saw above, you have a few other categories to work with for your content on that platform, as well.

Theatrical Video Marketing: How to Integrate Awards Season Topics into Your Video Content

Now that we’ve discovered what audiences are most interested in watching in relation to awards season content, it’s time to move on to the how-to portion of this post. Here are a few suggestions and tips for boosting your 2018 video content around awards season:

1. Choose Your Awards Shows Wisely

You know your audience best, so focus on the shows you know they’ll watch. Do they want to see content from the Grammys? Or are they more interested in the Academy Awards? Strategizing around shows which don’t resonate with your particular audience might just be a waste of your time, so don’t feel you must make content about a particular show if you don’t think your audience will watch it.

2. Focus on Most-Watched Categories

As we noted above, viewers on Facebook and YouTube prefer different types of videos related to awards season. Generate content around these preferences and catered to the viewing habits of fans for each particular show you’re covering. You can create commentary about acceptance speeches for both Facebook and YouTube, for example, while you also prepare clips of performances from the Grammys for your Facebook page or work on a recap video of the Golden Globes for your YouTube channel.

3. Gather Celebrity Intel

Just because you don’t know who’s ultimately going to walk home with that shiny award doesn’t mean you can’t prepare now to create celebrity intel content. Put together a list of 3-5 interesting facts about all the nominated candidates of your chosen show, and you’ll find that once winners are announced, it will be that much easier to put together a quick video about them. You can even just release the celebrity intel videos early to help build anticipation for the show and drive more eyeballs to your content!

4. Obtain Rights to Awards Content

If your brand isn’t affiliated with any of the awards shows, you may not be allowed to use content from them without permission. Generally, brands are allowed to use pre-approved clips and photos from the PR teams of awards shows, but anything beyond that isn’t likely free for the taking. Consult your legal team about what and how you can use awards show content, and obtain rights to any particular content you want to include in your own videos.

5. Get Your Audience Involved

Awards shows tend to generate a lot of live feedback from their fans, so why not jump on that opportunity with your own video content? For example, consider doing a live stream where people from your brand provide commentary on the awards shows of your choice while they take questions and feedback from your audience. You could also create a hashtag around your content and ask your audience to use it while answering a question like who they want to see win at their favorite awards show.

The upcoming awards season is a wonderful opportunity for your brand to provide your own unique angle on the shows through your video content and forge a more personal connection with your audience. Maximize your video marketing strategy around these events, and you’ll be sure to see more views and engagement in 2018!


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