Viacom is vamping up its digital offering through global partnerships with Twitter and Snapchat. The multi-media conglomerate also introduced a new slate of content to be distributed across Snapchat, Facebook Watch, and Twitter.
Today not only marks the first day of the 2018 Newfronts, but it also marks the first time Viacom has participated in the event. During its landmark presentation, the company, which recently unveiled a new digital studio, headed by former AwesomenessTV exec Kelly Day, detailed its plans to deliver hundreds of hours of premium, original content with Viacom stars and digital-native talent from BET, Comedy Central, MTV and Nickelodeon.
Part of that plan includes a new global partnership with Snap Inc. and Twitter. The company will develop and produce new shows and increase content around its tentpoles and live events for Snapchat’s Discover page. When it comes to Twitter, in addition to bringing back exclusive red carpet coverage of BET and MTV’s award shows, Viacom has joined forces with the social media company to bring fans worldwide daily trending news through the lens of Viacom’s brands.
- Promposal (MTV): “Promposal” follows teens as they pull out all the stops to land their dream dates.
- Girl Code (MTV): Bringing back “Girl Code” and updating it for the social generation in short-form series featuring both original cast members and up-and-coming comedians who will dispense advice and overshare about what it’s like to grow up and be an adult.
- Cribs (MTV): All the bling comes to Snapchat in this short-form reimagining of the classic MTV show where viewers get sneak peeks of celebrities’ houses. The first season (3 episodes) last summer was highest premiere of a Snapchat show ever and will return for a second season with new episodes this summer/fall.
- You Up? With Nikki Glaser (Comedy Central): A weekly show highlighting celebrity news, spun off from the comedian and television hosts live daily morning show on SiriusXM’s Comedy Central Radio. Nikki, along with her co-host and touring buddy, Tom Thakkar welcome comedy heavyweights like Ricky Gervais, Bill Hader, Amy Schumer, and Tracy Morgan to overshare about dating and sex, dissect pop culture and news, and poke fun at anyone who deserves it!
- The Majah Hype Show (BET): A weekly sketch comedy show hosted by comedian and actor Majah Hype and featuring a rotating ensemble cast of fellow comedians. The show will provide viewers with Majah’s comedic take on trending topics and current social commentary in the news along with hilarious original skits.
- Teen Code (MTV): In the tradition of “Girl Code,” “Teen Code” will feature influencers and teens discussing real life issues.
- Yo! MTV Whips (MTV): Yo! MTV Whips: Ride shotgun with Nick Cannon as he gets a taste of hip hop’s most insane automobiles in new series “Yo! MTV Whips.”
- Wild Styles (MTV): “Wild ‘N Out” introduced the world to freestyle comedy and the art of the wild style. The audience craves more rhymes, more fire and more burns, so MTV is delivering new exclusive battles right to their screens.
- Remaking the Video (MTV): Influencers and talent recreate classic music videos.
- Cooking in the Crib with Snooki (MTV): Expanding the Cribs franchise with everyone’s favorite Jersey girl as she brings a whole new flavor to the kitchen.
- Road to VidCon (MTV): A multi-part video series premiering in the lead up to this year’s VidCon that documents the journey of a young creator heading to one of the biggest events in his or her life.
- The JoJo & BowBow Show Show (Nickelodeon): A girl’s best friend is so much more in this series of animated shorts starring JoJo and her beloved dog BowBow. In each 3-5 minute animated short, JoJo tells a brand-new story that comically reveals how BowBow is way more than just a furry bestie. The character art leverages the existing art style from JoJo’s popular iMessage stickers. Six episodes are being made at Nickelodeon’s Entertainment Lab in the network’s Burbank headquarters.
- SlimeZone VR Showdown (Nickelodeon): A new digital series where you can watch the players go into Nickelodeon’s SlimeZone VR game to compete – and get virtually slimed!
- Nick Trip (Nickelodeon): Fans will follow Jace Norman, star of “Henry Danger”, as he travels throughout Europe with his brother Xander. It’s Jace’s first time in England, Germany and France, so fans will watch as he gets to see the biggest attractions, gets slimed for the first-time ever, meet fans from around the world and hang out with his Nick friends, Kira and Jack, stars of “The Thundermans”.
- Super League Gaming Minecraft City Champs (Nickelodeon): New esports series following Minecraft players as they team up to represent their city in a national tournament. From meeting the competitors to crowning the champion, we’ll follow the action and excitement of this multi-week competition.
While a majority of the content Viacom is producing for Snapchat will remain exclusive to the platform, many of its other shows will be distributed across multiple platforms. For example, “Rate the Bars,” a returning, original music series featuring respected emcees rating lyrics from other artists with unfiltered honesty, will be distributed across Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. This is the same for many of the series being developed by the company:
- BET’s “Beautycon” (Twitter/Facebook/YouTube): Partnership with Beautycon to co-create over 50 beauty tutorials focused on an African American audience. These videos reimagine the tutorial format with stunning visuals and shareable videos that showcase the latest trends and offer a wide array of beauty-influencer talent
- BET’s “Freestyle Friday” (YouTube, Facebook): A revival of the hugely popular Freestyle Friday segment from BET’s hit show “106 & Park.” Once a month, leading up to “The Hip Hop Awards,” aspiring and accomplished emcees will be invited to an open mic session, streamed live on YouTube from their various locations across the globe. The monthly event will be hosted by a resident hip-hop aficionado and have surprise guest appearances from top emcees, DJs, producers and label execs.
- Comedy Central’s “Meet Your First Black Girlfriend” (YouTube, Facebook): A new series exploring Akilah Hughes’ real life take on dating outside of her race. Her authentic presentation and hilarious sensibility on a culturally relevant experience and perspective will resonate with fans.
- Comedy Central’s “Between-the-Scenes” (Facebook, FB Watch, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter): This ongoing, Emmy Award-winning short form series features Trevor Noah interacting directly with the audience about topics political, pop-culture, and personal, and has over 150 million cross-platform streams since its launch last year.
- “Comedy Central’s” Hack into Broad City (Facebook, Facebook Watch, YouTube): The popular, critically-acclaimed exclusive extension of “Broad City” eavesdrops on the candid, often outrageous video chat sessions between Abbi and Ilana and keeps viewers engaged between seasons. New episodes of the Emmy-nominated “Hack Into Broad City” will debut later this year.
- “MTV Decoded” (Facebook, YouTube): a weekly series where the fearless Franchesca Ramsey tackles race, pop culture, and other uncomfortable things, in funny and thought-provoking ways.
In addition to the slate of new and renewed content, Comedy Central introduced The Creators Program, a new digital in-house initiative that taps into the #1 brand in comedy’s rich history of identifying, developing and launching emerging talent. The Creators Program will be the anchor of the brand’s digital strategy to expand its social footprint, connect daily
with fans of comedy, and generate branded opportunities for advertising partners through the creation
of provocative and culturally relevant original short-form content.
Additionally, VidCon announced further international expansion to London, bringing the largest gathering of online video creators and their fans to the ExCel Center from February 14-17, 2019.