- M&M's, T-Mobile and Wells Fargo have signed on as brand partners for NBC's new competition show "American Song Contest," per details emailed to Marketing Dive. The Eurovision-inspired show premieres on Monday, March 21.
- M&M's will be featured in an out-of-show ShoppableTV-enabled brand spot. The Mars candy will also sponsor the M&M's Music Lounge, which the show's artists will use and viewers can access through a 360-degree virtual experience.
- As NBCU continues to test different ways to connect measurement directly to brand outcomes, T-Mobile and Wells Fargo will produce custom spots that seek to bridge artists and fans. The mobile carrier will be the season's official voting partner and will virtually spotlight local communities that it will host at local watch parties.
NBC is teaming with three major brand partners as it prepares to launch "American Song Contest," a U.S.-based version of the annual European contest. Hosted by Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, the show will pit performers from all 50 states, five territories and Washington, D.C. against each other as they compete for the title of Best Original Song. NBC is likely hoping to mirror the popularity of the European contest and of singing competition shows like NBC's own "America's Got Talent" and "The Voice," which have also teamed with brands.
The partnerships seek to connect audiences and artists by leveraging a host of NBCU capabilities. M&M's will be utilizing ShoppableTV in a brand spot that will help the candy brand tie content with mobile commerce, and is using technology to elevate its sponsorship of the custom on-set M&M's Music Lounge into a virtual experience for viewers. The effort is in line with M&M's controversial rebrand, which it followed up with packaging that celebrated musical icons from different cultural backgrounds and generations.
"M&M's is on a mission to create a world where everyone feels they belong and one of the most impactful ways to do that, is through music, which has the power to connect people by helping them find their commonalities," said Allison Miazga-Bedrick, senior brand director at Mars Wrigley, in a statement.
T-Mobile and Wells Fargo have teamed with NBCU's Creative Partnerships team to produce custom spots that seek to create seamless ad experiences. The mobile carrier will help audiences share positive messages with performers that will air in commercial time, while Wells Fargo during two episodes of the season will debut a custom "isopod," an NBCU offering in which a brand spot is bracketed by co-branded bumpers that seek to create a seamless content-commercial experience.
The T-Mobile spot is part of a 360-degree tie-up that also includes an integration with the voting process and the chance for a top finalist to have their song featured in an upcoming brand commercial after the show's finale. It is also sponsoring local watch parties that it will virtually spotlight during the show.
The partnerships are NBCU's latest attempt to flex its suite of offerings for advertisers following last month's simultaneous Super Bowl-Winter Olympics push. The media company used that occasion as part of its test-and-learn of new partnerships that seek to connect measurement directly to brand outcomes.