Attention parents, babysitters and Wizards of Waverly fans: If your tween friends’ Facebook statuses begin to read “OMG Selena” or “Beebs hating” on Sunday, don’t be surprised. MTV is pairing up with Facebook during the network’s Movie Awards show this Sunday.
As part of the partnership, teen favorite Selena Gomez will use Facebook to share her experience from rehearsals through the end of the big show. A “Thank You Cam” on Facebook will give fans access interviews with the night’s winners. The “Best Hero” category will be determined by fans, who can vote via Instagram and Twitter.
MTV and Facebook hope the initiative will bring a more engaging fan experience to a second-screen generation who might get a little bored just watching an awards show on TV.
“During major televised events, we see immediate spikes in user chatter on those topics. Whether it’s breaking news, the Super Bowl, the Oscars, or the MTV Movie Awards, people are watching TV while at the same time sharing and talking to their friends on Facebook,” said Nick Grudin, who heads community partnerships for Facebook in a statement. “Entertainment is a category where this happens on a global scale, from fans buzzing about new openings, to seeing behind-the-scenes photos from the celebrities themselves.”
Colin Helms, the SVP of Digital and New Media for MTV, told Fast Company that beyond the natural synergy between Facebook and MTV’s audiences, the company’s use of social media has made shows like the Video Music Awards go from fun to newsworthy to historical. For example, he pointed out, when Beyonce first announced she was pregnant at the 2011 VMAs, a simple Tweet from the company’s account with a picture of Beyonce’s stomach and a one line caption spread “like wildfire.” “It was our lightening in the bottle moment,” he said.
MTV has had a few more social media wins in the past few years–like a Tumblr to help interpret teen-speak for older people, and perhaps more helpfully, a Facebook app to help students understand college costs. And when it comes to major brand partnerships around major events, Facebook isn’t a newbie, either.
Any guesses for what this year’s social hit will be? Tell us in the comments.