NBCUniversal recently made headlines after striking a content and advertising portfolio partnership with Snapchat. The partnership is part of a new digital content initiative to produce and distribute original shows for mobile and social platforms from NBCUniversal’s leading networks, franchises and personalities.
Ron Lamprecht, EVP of Business Development and Digital Distribution in the Content Distribution Group, has been tapped to lead the company’s effort. Ron offers a look inside the initiative:
Tell us about this new mobile-first original content initiative?
Lamprecht: Nobody makes premium video better than NBCUniversal. We deliver more ratings with our portfolio than any other programmer. We have the best shows, most creative storytellers and biggest personalities in entertainment, sports and news. And, as audience behavior changes and viewers expect content on their mobile and social platforms, we are adapting to deliver them the best experience. We have to make sure NBCUniversal’s content continues to appeal to all viewers no matter where they are consuming it. We are tapping into our talent and franchises and using our scale to make a meaningful and immediate impact in the digital space. This will benefit us on emerging platforms and also further promote our on-air content.
Who is producing the content and how will it be different from your current digital content?
Lamprecht: Thanks to Steve Burke’s vision and leadership, NBCUniversal’s networks now have the resources and opportunity to create new shows specifically tailored for platforms like Snapchat. We are not talking about re-purposed clips from TV shows (though those will still be created). Much of the new content will be original productions of high quality, short-form content for viewing specifically on smaller screen in a vertical format, instead of the tradition horizontal “TV” screens in our homes.
Why start with Snapchat?
Lamprecht: Snapchat has quickly become one of the most highly trafficked social networks and it is wildly popular with millennials and younger generations. It has millions of active daily users and it offers a fun and unique delivery platform for video content. We believe this is a platform where our brands can thrive while at the same time promoting and growing our network fan base. With Snapchat, we will build a best-in-class production capability for devices, and a younger demographic. We will provide immediate data on what’s working and what’s not to all the NBCUniversal brands to ensure we’re delivering the best possible experience to our consumers.
How is this content different from other popular Snapchat content?
Lamprecht: Most Snapchat content is magazine-style or user generated video. Our content will be the quality video production that audiences expect from us. And it will be groundbreaking for the industry in a number of areas. First, NBC is ahead of its peers in creating original Snapchat shows. The Voice on Snapchat will be the first ever reality competition show to expand its storytelling onto Snapchat. On the cable side, E! News is launching a unique and humorous look at all things pop culture in a new show called The Rundown. Later this fall we will have original content from The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and Saturday Night Live. And we are already live with exciting and original content from the Rio Olympics, which was co-produced by Buzzfeed.
What is next?
Lamprecht: Snapchat is just the start. We are working with others—digital distributors, social media networks and traditional cable, satellite and telco distributors—to reach new content and advertising partnerships for the mobile-first digital content we are producing. There is no programming group with a more diverse and powerful lineup than NBCUniversal. As our networks are working hard to produce new content and grow our audiences, we will keep working with technology platforms and other partners to deliver the best content to our audiences.
Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on NBCUniversal's corporate site.