NBCUniversal is adapting to the times as linear awards show viewership declines

People are still interested in award shows, even if they're not watching them on television.

A cursory internet search for "awards show viewership" will have you bombarded with a slew of articles and data points proclaiming the death of the awards show format as consumers move to streaming services and digital media. 

But according to Laura Molen, president, advertising sales and partnerships at NBCUniversal Media, consumers' interest in awards show content hasn't changed. But the platforms they are engaging on have. 

"We’re seeing a shift in client spend from predominately linear media to the digital space across many platforms," she told Campaign US. 

In 2019, multi-platform engagement across E!'s coverage of the Golden Globes, Grammys, Oscars, Met Gala, Primetime Emmys & PCAs was up by 40 percent compared to 2018, with most of that growth driven by digital and social.  

According to data from NBCUniversal, digital engagements such as page views and video views increased by 33 percent while social interactions including likes, comments, shares and views increased by 53 percent. 

This shows that while people may no longer be gathering around a television set, awards shows definitely still have drawing power. 

"We want to help clients understand what speaks to each consumer group as it ties to their brand. For some consumers, a live stream is valuable, while others want a look-in, or in other cases an integration might be more appropriate. We have the power to do it all," Molen said. 

And while engagement with the shows themselves was up across platforms in 2019, brands that partnered with E!’s Globes, Grammys, Oscars & Primetime Emmys award coverage across TV, digital, and social in 2019 also saw double-digit increases in the following key areas: 

  • Aided Ad Recall: +96% 

  • Purchase Intent: +28% 

  • Brand Recommendation: +23% 

  • Brand Opinion: +11% 

For 2020 NBCUniversal has so far partnered with the following seven "red carpet brands" for the Golden Globes, Academy Awards, and Grammy's, with more to be added. Each brand will have a unique activation that goes beyond linear media as follows:

  • Real is a Diamond, will bring you the sparkly stories that adorned this award season, live from E! red carpet at the Golden Globes and Academy Awards.

  • Discover returns as a red carpet sponsor for the second year in a row, joining forces with E! for a branded countdown clock the night of the Golden Globes.

  • L'Oréal Paris' brand ambassador, Sir John, will be featured in Golden Globes-themed content across NBCUnversal’s platforms, sharing how the power of cosmetics can elevate confidence, with its iconic tagline- "because they're worth it."

  • BMW of North America is teaming up with a fashion designer to give fans a chance to choose a look for an E! correspondent on the Academy Awards red carpet. 

  • Kinder is celebrating the US launch of its newest product Kinder Bueno, by highlighting both past and present academy award moments that defied expectations, creating awareness for its new product.

  • Every A-list look also needs a healthy skincare routine and thanks to Neutrogena will give viewers the inside scoop on getting that movie-star-ready look ahead of this year’s Academy Awards.

  • And, at one of the biggest nights for singers, songwriters, and musicians alike, Mastercard will engage music fans on-air, through exclusive experiences and social content.  

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