AccuWeather has launched a branded BBM Channel to extend its social connection to weather fans. The company, which has a longstanding relationship with Blackberry, has joined the ranks of brands such as Time and Disney in creating its own dedicated BBM Channel. The new AccuWeather BBM Channel will offer a range of breaking weather information, including severe weather updates, breaking stories, local weather images, radar and more, which Blackberry Messaging (BBM) subscribers can access across mobile platforms.
AccuWeather timed its Channel release to coincide with last week’s expansion of BBM when Blackberry announced an update to BBM for all users as well as making Blackberry’s private social network available to iPhone and Android smartphone users. AccuWeather’s Coordinator of Social Media Jesse Ferrell says that the move made sense to extend the brand’s mobile and social reach, “BlackBerry has a huge audience who is always connected and online, and we are thrilled to be able to interact with that audience through this Social channel.”
BBM Channels is Blackberry’s social engagement platform that works within BBM. It allows people to connect with the businesses, brands, celebrities and groups of interest. It also lets users engage in in conversation around content in a similar fashion to Twitter and Facebook while providing brands with integrated monitoring and measurement tools.
“Social Media in general helps AccuWeather inform its audience about inclement weather, while reinforcing the brand,” says Ferrell. Though the audience may overlap with other social channels on which AccuWeather is already active, Ferrell says that delivering content within the context of Blackberry Messaging will extend the reach of its weather related information to an audience that might not yet be as familiar with what the AccuWeather brand offers. And, as Ferrell points out, “Because of its real-time and local nature, weather is always a win on Social Media.”