TNT was the exclusive home for the first NBA All-Star to land in Toronto, Canada and Turner capitalized on the biggest weekend of the NBA season with record-breaking social coverage via the @NBAonTNT handles. A few examples of how TNT’s social team provided content across social media include: Beginning with media day, there were many on-site activations that took place to gear up for the start of All-Star in Toronto, including capturing the Pro’s Predictions. Each player filled out a tablet survey with questions such as ‘Who will win the Dunk Contest?’ and ‘Who will be named All-Star MVP?’ They were also asked to complete the sentence ‘I’m an All-Star because…’ with many siting the family and friends that helped them along the way.
Keeping a close ear to pop culture themes, we wanted to find a relevant way to weave an engaging story all throughout the weekend on social. DJ Khaled’s “Keys” theme had been infiltrating pop culture and his Snapchat status was growing rapidly, so TNT asked the music mogul himself to give our NBA on TNT fans and TV audience his “Keys to All-Star Weekend Success”. Along with Khaled’s first person “Keys”, we got the players involved in the conversation by having them give us their “Keys” to different things: Slam Dunk, 3-point contest, Skills Challenge and Valentine’s Day. Khaled was featured across TNT’s social platforms, as well as the Inside the NBA studio show.
Throughout the weekend, the social feeds served as a second screen experience, using a combination of reactionary gifs, quotes, real-time updates, custom graphics, highlights and vines to cover the weekend in a voice unique to TNT. One moment that instantly went viral was this year’s Dunk Contest, which set social media on fire as fans reacted to this year’s competition with Aaron Gordon and Zach LaVine. @NBAonTNT flooded twitter with gifs, vines, slo-mo videos and more throughout the competition. TNT also engaged with the casual fan through gifs of celebrity reactions from the sidelines, as well as style content from All-Star Saturday. The account also posted an innovative moving graphic announcing Zach LaVine as the 2016 Slam Dunk Champion.
Recaps from weekend were among the top performers for the week. Fans were highly engaged with content surrounding the big moments all through the week, such as a video of Steph Curry making a half-court shot during Sunday’s game which reached over 7 million people and was viewed 1.6 million times. The social coverage of the 2016 All-Star Weekends events encouraged fans to participate in the story that was unfolding during each event of the weekend.
During 2016 NBA All-Star, Turner partnered with Twitter to get fans talking about the weekend and our talent integrated into the conversation. Twitter launched a series of 32 emojis on the Thursday before the All-Star game, which featured the players from both the Eastern and the Western Conferences as well as some special NBA on TNT themed emojis for the true fans. The emojis were displayed an estimated 1.3 million times across Twitter with the use of the corresponding hashtags.