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MTV is Hook'd on fun through singing selfie app

Viacom is having fun and celebrating with consumers through the selfie singing application Hook?d to promote its international summer events, a contest and a variety of content. 

MTV International is implementing two contests through the Hook?d app, in which users record themselves singing to music coinciding with the events for a chance to win Golden Circle pit tickets at the Isle of MTV and a tickets to the European Music Awards in Milan. 

"In the context of this campaign, Viacom has a few objectives," said said James McNally, director of business development at Fuzz Productions, Brooklyn, NY. "First is creating an awesome festival in Malta and an awesome European Music Award event, which keeps MTV relevant to its target demographic in Europe.  

"Second, and much more important and challenging, is offering ad products or ad strategies to brands that engage that target demo," he said. "A well-executed UGC campaign will have participants feeling like they are taking part in something fun and creative WITH a brand, rather than being simply subjected to messaging.

"Good UGC campaigns make a user feel that they've been given a special experience by a brand, and anyone who's gotten a chance to have fun singing a catchy Euro anthem hook in front of a big audience probably has an elevated affinity for whatever brand is underwriting that experience. If done well, this campaign can give viewers or participants a sense of belonging in the story that MTV is telling and brands can certainly be players in that story."

Hook?d on social media
Hook?d launched in summer of 2014 and boasts more than 1 million users. The mobile app allows for users to record a video that follows a karaoke format. 

The app is available for iOS and integrates with YouTube. Users of Hook?d use headphones to record themselves singing to a song of their choice, while lyrics show on their mobile device. 

Once finished, the app generates a version of the video with the musical accompaniment without the original lyrical, rather with the user-generated vocals instead. The video can be shared through the user?s YouTube account. 

MTV is accessing this love of the spotlight and is leveraging this as a technique to connect with the consumer. Those located on the island of Malta can be chosen to win free entry to VIP area the Golden Circle pit at Isle of MTV just by sharing a video on YouTube from the app. 

The Isle of MTV is Viacom?s biggest summer concert located in Malta. The event features many popular international artists and is broadcasted on MTV?s European stations.

The winner of the Isle of MTV contest will be announced on stage at the concert before the show. Hook?d users can also win tickets to the EMA in Milan, the same way, simply by using the Hook?d app. 

Lib dubbing success
Similar to this campaign, Universal Pictures partnered with the Mobile Motion GmbH application Dubsmash, that is comparable to Hook?d in that users record themselves lip dubbing famous quotes, for the latest installment of action film series Fast and Furious (see more). 

Also, USA?s reality series Chrisley Knows Best is proving that fan-generated content is key with its Dubsmash partnership to promote its current season (see more). 

"Broadly speaking, it seems likely that we all absorb passive non-interactive sponsored content less wholeheartedly than previous generations or perhaps we are just more discerning consumers of ad content now," Mr. McNally said. "Brands know this, and are searching out ways to engage rather than bombard. Media companies like Viacom know this as well, and using Hook'd may fit the bill quite well here."

"The success of events like this, which is to say a marquis European festival, 9 years running, 50K+ attendees, is not determined by whether or not there was a fun UGC promo campaign," he said. "People will go to the festival and have fun, and that is largely based on the track record that the series has and the strength of the performers.   

"Any type of promo helps, but whether or not this particular campaign drives more repeat or new attendees than any other promotional effort is hard to say.  In my opinion, it is a great way to allocate part of the budget for festival promotion."

Final take
Brielle Jaekel is editorial assistant at Mobile Marketer