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Andy’s Answers: How Discovery reinvented Shark Week with social tools

2 min read

Brands & Campaigns

Discovery Communications’ Shark Week borders on national-holiday status for its fans, and every year, the team behind it looks for ways to make it bigger and more amazing than the year before.

This past year, Discovery’s Gayle Weiswasser and Amber Harris and their team turned to social media to reinvent their series. The results were more than 14,000 posts and online media mentions about Shark Week, a worldwide trending topic, and 25,000 public Facebook status updates about Shark Week in the first week alone.

At our recent BlogWell, Weiswasser and Harris shared shared a few tips on how they did it:

  • Amplify fan content. The Discovery team retweeted often, let fans upload their photos to Facebook and ran video challenge on YouTube.
  • Look for simple partnerships. Discovery partnered with the Georgia Aquarium to do live streaming from their shark tanks. The concept allowed fans to tune in online and ask questions with an expert while underwater.
  • Connect existing clusters of fans. Discovery took advantage of existing online Facebook fan groups by rolling them up into an official fan page — a move that benefited both the fans and Discovery.

Watch the case study:

(Note: Apologies as the presentation gets cut off early in this video, but there’s still some great ideas here and lots of interesting Q&A from the audience.)

And if you like this presentation, be sure to check out our upcoming BlogWell events in Austin, Texas, New York, and Washington, D.C.