Matt and Ross Duffer (twin brothers) started making films in 3rd grade after borrowing a high-end video camera from their parents. They began by shooting their stuffed animals gradually moving to short riffs of The Godfather titled the Stuff Father. Today, the Duffer Brothers are known for the hit-series Stranger Things.
Netflix helped Duffer brothers realized their dream of “an epic eight-hour movie”. The episode length varies based on the narrative. Each season is released in one go. Stranger Things in many ways represents the future of media. 221.8 million people will stream online videos this year. In fact, Netflix’s CPO argues that Netflix is what all of television will look like in 2025.
Brands have also realized the influence this new medium of storytelling holds for its audience. Branded content series could be in the form of a docu-series or digital web-series. We take a closer look at few of the best branded content series and what made them successful.
Best Branded Content Series
Guilty Party – AT&T
AT&T wanted to communicate the relevance and value of the brand to young people. Guilty Party touches on a range of social issues facing today’s youth. The web-series was scripted by AT&T’s Hello Lab and uses nine social media influencers (Miles McKenna, Teala Dunn, Alexis G. Zall, Jessie Paege, Manolo Vergara, Kian Lawley, Tiffany Alvord, Vale Genta and Kenny Knox) with a cumulative reach of 38 million fans. To enhance interactions with fans the team created individual profiles for influencers.
Guilty Party attracted 42 million views, 351 million impressions and 38 million engagements— an organic YouTube engagement rate 5.7 times the industry standard within ten weeks post the release.
Science and Star Wars – IBM
IBM partnered with the Star War franchise to demonstrate its cutting-edge technology and the transformation contributions across it has made across the industry. IBM leveraged Star War’s, and it’s own social media presence to explore the relationship between science and technology.
10-episode series explored specific Star Wars topics by discussing the technology behind each topic with IBM researchers and scientists. Through the Science and Star Wars videos, IBM was able to connect in new ways with Star Wars fans, while still reaching their intended demographics of developers, IT decision makers, and technology professionals.
Drone Week – GE
Drone Week showcases GE’s massive infrastructure that builds, powers, and cures the world. GE partnered with Viceland to create one week of custom content on the network that would air during prime time.
Mini-documentaries highlight GE’s technology and how it is making a difference in five locations across the world. Drone Week on Viceland was the network’s most successful co-branded show in history, with 96% positive social sentiment.
With the right strategy, branded content series will work to improve not only your bottom line but also your overall brand health and status in the market.