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Broadway mobile-social campaign targets urban youngsters

Broadway musical ?Holler If Ya Hear Me? is promoting strategically through social to target urban, hip-hop enthusiasts, particularly a younger generation. 

The musical was inspired by the life of the late rapper Tupac Shakur, with the marketing strategy designed to connect the world of hip-hop to another area of entertainment: Broadway. These initiatives showcase how entertainment properties can leverage mobile to reach a targeted audience. 

??Holler If Ya Hear Me? is fighting against the obvious,? said Guillaume Lelait, vice president at Fetch North America, San Francisco. ?Its ideal consumers aren?t looking to buy a ticket to a Broadway musical. Creating the advertisements that appeal to their target audience is the first step, but actually getting those ads in front of that audience is the next one.

Social media is a particularly apt channel for distributing content because it allows for in depth targeting that isn?t possible elsewhere. Fetch has seen success with leveraging age, demographic and interest based targeting on Facebook to promote events to a brand?s ideal audience. For instance, the show could choose to serve their Facebook ads only to users who have liked the artist Tupac or hip-hop as a genre on their profile.?

Mr. Lelait is not affiliated with Broadway but agreed to speak as an industry expert.

Social strategy
Following the trend of hashtag #OccupyBroadway, executives have relaunched the initiative by incorporating ?hip-hop has come to #OccupyBroadway? and hashtag #WhenHipHopMeetsBroadway.

Twitter account @HollerBWay, which currently has a fan base of nearly 1,800 followers, continually releases actor interviews and contests to win free or discounted tickets.

Interactive graphics also supplement the Twitter feed, such as artsy photos of characters with motivational Tupac lyrics across the image.

Broadway executives collaborated with branding and strategy company Cornerstone Agency, an establishment known more within the realm of music rather than Broadway.

Film + social
Sectors within entertainment have bumped up their social campaigns to appeal to greater audiences.

The movie adaptation of novelist John Green?s "The Fault in Our Stars" utilized marketing firm theAmplify and its SharedRank Algorithm to determine that more than 16 million Instagram users interacted about the film. 

As prevalent as social campaigns are these days, it is often wondered what kinds of numbers back up these efforts. The use of targeted influencers drove the conversation, likely helping the film reach $170 million in ticket sales (see story). 

Also, Television network ABC?s reality series ?Rising Star? premiered June 22 alongside a collaborative mobile application, enabling live votes and the chance for participants to be shown on screen.

A virtual wall stands behind host Josh Groban, and as votes are submitted, participants are randomly selected to appear on the wall, as their profile pictures are visible to the public. In an effort to ?raise the wall,? viewers control which contestants will advance in real time while receiving publicity (see story). 

Statistics show social is a great way to create tailored advertising aimed toward a young audience.

?Social channels offer specialized targeting, but more importantly, they offer the right audience in general,? Mr. Lelait  said. ?According to new data from GlobalWebIndex, 88% of millennials have a Facebook account and 59% have a Twitter account. In order to reach this demographic, brands need to be present on social media channels.?

Final Take
Caitlyn Bohannon, editorial assistant for Mobile Marketer, New York