Social media has been hailed as a fantastic promotional platform by a senior official at the BBC.

The broadcaster has created a single brand – BBC Music – to encompass all its music-related programming and to encourage young people to get into singing and playing an instrument.

As part of the launch, it created a star-studded cover version of God Only Knows by The Beach Boys, featuring the likes of Brian May, One Direction and Pharrell Williams, along with a lavish video.

While the content is being broadcast on the BBC’s main TV channels and radio station, director of marketing and audiences for radio at BBC Music Neil Caldicott believes it will deliver powerful results elsewhere – specifically social media.

“TV still delivers fantastic reach, but the longevity of this campaign will live out on YouTube and Facebook,” he commented.

Mr Caldicott pointed out that the BBC does not specialise in creating advertisements. However, he said the very best marketing world “transcends the everyday” and creates a sense of “magic” and “joy”.

The new video has reminded many of the BBC’s reworking of Lou Reed’s Perfect Day 17 years ago, which also featured an eclectic mixture of stars including Tom Jones, Bono and David Bowie.

However, Mr Caldicott has been keen to stress that the media environment is very different today and that the BBC is not trying to replicate its success with the earlier campaign.

“The amount of post-production wizardry at our disposal now just wasn’t around then, while social media has enabled us to use the talent in the film as ambassadors,” he observed.

Mr Caldicot went on to state that the BBC approached this project by viewing it as “more than a marketing campaign”.

This, he said, meant the BBC made full use of the fact it is a creative organisation with a strong editorial base.

For instance, he noted that head of Radio 1 George Ergatoudis and Radio 2 boss Jeff Smith were both very helpful, both in terms of providing their music knowledge and opening up their contact books.

God only knows: how the BBC pushed the boundaries of content marketing, Marketing

Posted by Robin McCrink