NBC’s expanded content play with Snapchat a reach for younger viewers

By Jim O'Neill on Aug 09 2016 at 8:30 AM

Comcast’s NBCUniversal is hoping to engage Snapchat’s 100 million users with a slate of original episodic content for the messaging app, adding another layer to the original deal with Snapchat is signed in April to show highlights of the Rio Olympics, the first time NBC has allowed distribution of sports highlights outside its own platform.

The new multi-year content and advertising deal is aimed at the same demographic as its Olympics play, Millennials.

NBC will create additional content from The Voice reality show to create The Voice on Snapchat, debuting Aug. 22. Starting in September, E! News will debut a weekly series with original content for Snapchat, and other NBC staples, including The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and Saturday Night Live will eventually make their way to Snapchat.

“This is going to be more of an original show production,” Ron Lamprecht, EVP of business development and digital distribution at NBCUniversal told the Wall Street Journal, adding that the new episodes will be created in vertical video format. “The idea that you’re going to take a horizontal piece of content, even if it’s great, and just crop it vertically isn’t going to work.”

Vertical content has grown more popular as smartphones have become nearly ubiquitous. From just a 5% share of mobile viewing in 2010, it made up 29% of mobile video viewing in 2015.

As it has with the Olympics, NBC likely will repurpose the Snapchat content to be used elsewhere.

The service will be ad supported, with NBC selling its own, and Snapchat’s, advertising packages, as it did with the Olympics, and sharing revenues. NBC said it plans sponsorship, mobile and video offerings, too.

Nielsen last year said Snapchat reaches more than 40% of Millennials. The company claims more than 10 billion video views a day, and contends the swipe-up rate for vertical ads is 5X higher than the average CTR for other platforms.

Stay tuned.                                                             

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