To promote “Coal,” its new 10-part documentary series that launched this spring, and connect with the coal-mining community in a positive way, Spike TV in March held pre-screenings for miners and their families in three Appalachian coal-mining communities.
Spike Screening Events Connect with Miners
“Coal,” which was produced by Thom Beers of reality shows “Deadliest Catch” and “Ice Road Truckers,” offers a first-hand look at the extreme conditions and lives of the people in this profession.
The events took place in three strategic markets, each in a different format. In Pikeville, KY, in the heart of coal country, 2,000 people attended the pre-screening in an arena environment. The event in Morgantown, WV, which took place in a ballroom, had a red-carpet feel and featured videos and motion graphics of the show’s scenes and sponsors on large-format video screens. The Washington, PA event was held on a college campus with more of an artsy, Q&A format.
Regional leaders spoke at the events; the series’ creators discussed their approach and showed background material. Attendees viewed the first episode of the series a week before it aired on TV. A NASCAR car and driver on hand for the events created buzz, along with social media that tied into Spike TV and the charity Remember the Miners. Live updates on Facebook, Flickr and Twitter amplified the events.
“We knew there was a real, substantive community here and we also felt that we had a product that was a very honest and favorable portrayal of them and it would be important for the success of the show to have the community embrace it,” Todd Ames, vice president of consumer marketing at Spike TV, told Buzz. “And the way to do that was to show them some respect and give them an advance look at what the product was that was going to be representing them on a national scale.” Agency: Brightline Interactive, Alexandria, VA