Winner: The History Channel – Hatfields & McCoys
By leveraging big name stars and the miniseries' high-quality production value, HC presented the miniseries as a cinematic event through unique, high-profile media placements.
This included long-lead buzz during production (interviews, photos, blogger and online conference calls with cast), tapping into talent's wide-reaching Twitter and Facebook accounts to spread awareness, and building media awareness with segmented outreach (press kit, 3-month targets, tailored story angles). While still in production, months before the premiere, HC pitched a wide range of electronic, print and online outlets to cover the action on-set in Romania.With Hatfields & McCoys set to be first scripted program to ever air on the network, the History Channel (HC) needed to speak to their current audience about how the show varied from other programming.
At the same time, they were looking to develop an entirely new audience for the channel: drama enthusiasts and those looking for more entertaining fare. It was hopes that this first venture into scripted programming would serve as a launching pad for more in the future.
The press kit followed in the form of a family album of both the Hatfields and McCoys. Prominently broken in half across the middle, the kit featured rich details of each family separately. Press materials, photos and miniseries were all readily available on HC’s press site.
The HC special was the most-watched, ad-supported prime-time television event and not just once—but in three individual airings.
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