Netflix, the world’s leading internet entertainment service, launched its first Netflix African Original Series, Queen Sono, in February 2020 – a significant milestone in cementing its commitment and investment in Africa.
The main objective was to successfully launch Queen Sono to the South African and global audiences across multiple channels while building awareness, improving viewership and perception of Netflix; its local content; talent in South Africa and its African investment story.
We were tasked to create a memorable publicity campaign to create online, social and press conversation launching the series; receive mass exposure in top-tier print and online press; trend on social media during launch week and maintain high online engagement post-launch.
SAME OLD FACES
A plea for new faces: Consumers feel that the South African entertainment industry use many of the same names, ringing true for Queen Sono.
SOLUTION: To show new talent of the series, we paired new faces with the well known actors in interviews.
FIRST ORIGINAL CONFUSION
Shadow was originally marketed as the first African Netflix Original Series: which could cause some confusion.
SOLUTION: We introduced Queen Sono as the first ‘script to screen’ fully produced Netflix Original Series.
INSIGHTS & INNOVATION
To ensure Queen Sono was the number one organically trending topic across prominent online, influencer and press channels, we needed to be innovative in the way our publicity and social media teams combined their strengths to leverage both individuals and media houses as influencers. We created a digital and offline ecosystem where influencers and media became online publishers of created content and organic carriers of the messages.
To garner authentic exposure
- We leveraged the firsts about the series, which included,
- The first “screen to script” Netflix African Original Series
- Queen Sono is the first Netflix African Original with a black African female lead, Pearl Thusi
- We celebrated our beautiful African cast and ensured their experience with Netflix turned them into brand ambassadors
- Leveraged media channels as content partners to ensure they felt part of the Queen Sono Journey
- Kicked-off Netflix’s investment in African story
While a paid portion of the influencer campaign was planned and executed, the ability to engage celebrity influence and reach through relationships and amazing content (the show and campaign elements) was integral to launch success.
In addition, leveraging media channels from the beginning of the campaign and throughout as content partners solidified our coverage with top-tier press outlets, who felt like they were involved in the various moving parts of the campaign.
We shared multiple beats of broader press collateral with outlets including: Start of production announcement; Casting announcement; First look images announcement; Set visit content; Teaser announcement; Trailer announcement; Premiere announcement
Understanding the fine line between publicity and social media/influencers and working both collectively was highly effective in achieving breakthrough results. We used topical and engaging content pillars to create tailored content for all online channels.