Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Super Bowl: The Biggest Transmedia Party

If you need a clear-cut example of how an entertainment product or a brand can use transmedia, look no further than the Super Bowl. 

Everything leads up to the big game, the final contest between the two teams that finish the National Football League season. Everything. 

Super Bowl 50 landed an estimated 111.9 million eyeballs on the television broadcast alone. This doesn't include how many watched in a bar, on a legal or illegal video stream, or on affiliated networks (such as ESPN Deportes). 

The Super Bowl is transmedia on steroids. 

Think about it. The Twitter conversations alone are enough to make a brand's head spin to try and catch up. During the game, you'll see trending hashtags for any significant play that happens, a commercial that resonates, a comment made during the broadcast, the halftime show. If the trend really resonates, you'll see someone create a new Twitter handle (see @leftshark). 

Then there are the memes -- the blessed memes. These are what make the Internet great. Here are a few examples from Super Bowl 50:

Besides the hundreds of accredited media attending the main event, you have fans and celebrities documenting their journeys and experience of the game. 

There are all the side stories leading up to the game: player profiles, the impact on the community, late night television interviews, product placement, and even a movie.

Then there are the commercials. The game is not just the icing on the NFL season; it is also championship day for advertisers and advertising firms. In the past few years, we're seeing more and more of these commercials receiving their own transmedia treatment, with teasers, contests, and some are also prelaunched the week before the actual game. 

There isn't a social media, media outlet (whether it's sports, news, or entertainment), establishment that has not had some form of discussion about the Super Bowl. That is transmedia on steroids.

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