It’s been 36 years since The Buggles declared that video killed the radio star. Yet since MTV launched in 1981, it’s been pivotal in bringing popular music to the masses – giving iconic artists such as Bon Jovi, Bryan Adams and Prince a rock and roll platform to sing from.
But, there’s a long-running joke that the MTV channel(s) don’t play music videos anymore – favouring original programming and much-loved sitcoms instead. Think Geordie Shore, Awkward, Jackass and, my personal favourite, Catfish.
In a bid to retain its portion of the youth market, MTV’s turning to trending social media networks to engage audiences.
That’s right everyone: MTV Cribs is coming to Snapchat!
Returning on the brand’s Discover channel as a weekly show 16 years after launching, celebrities will give self-guided tours of their mansions from next month.
Not only does this cut costs for the broadcaster – eliminating the need for expensive film crews – but also gives a viewer a more intimate experience with their idols. Win-win.
Statistically, that viewer will be one of the 100 million users from its niche 18 to 24 year-old demographic. And – recognising that people want to be involved, informed and entertained in a matter of seconds when using the channel – brands are being forced think of bespoke and creative content ideas to stand out against the likes of competing editorial providers e.g. Daily Mail, Buzzfeed and People Magazine.
Known and famed for its content creation, MTV’ll definitely be well-placed to tell Snapchat stories to fans that are ‘switched on’ to the format. And, it’ll have some practice when it airs an eight-part sex and relationships series online next week called Pants Off.
It’ll be interesting to see what success looks like to the brand. I’ve recently noticed it’s invested a lot in Instagram, besides Snapchat, which is great for awareness. However, it offers limited analysis or incentive to drive people back to its website or TV channel.
This suggests it’s willing to continue diversifying to ensure it maintains its relevance for social media savvy audiences who demand snackable and convenient updates.
The video star has been under threat for years, but has Snapchat finally killed it?
Watch this space to see how it ‘plays’ out.