By: Hope Salyer
“Gilmore Girls” fans united on Nov. 25, 2016 to watch the highly-anticipated premiere of “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life.” According to AdAge, Netflix’s “Gilmore Girls” revival ranked as the No. 3 most-watched original series on the platform. The four-part series “averaged 5 million viewers among 18 to 49 year olds and pulled a 3.59 rating in the demo in the three days after it dropped on Netflix.”
So how did Netflix do it? They followed an effective PR campaign.
Let me break it down for you:
The purpose of the PR campaign was to increase anticipation for the premiere of the four-part series and to increase the number of viewers. By increasing anticipation for the revival through the campaign’s strategies and tactics, Netflix was able to increase the number of viewers.
Netflix’s PR campaign had three main strategies:
- Appeal to the original fan base. Posting series throwbacks and being active on social media got original “Gilmore Girls” fans excited about a possible reboot prior to the official announcement of the revival.
- The second strategy was to increase earned and owned media. Netflix created content that stimulated conversation around the word about the reboot by posting on social media channels. Once fans began to join the conversation, earned channels came into play soon after.
- The final strategy was to get younger generations who were not original fans to watch the reboot. By increasing the excitement of the revival for older millennials who originally watched “Gilmore Girls,” younger millennials also became excited.
Netflix’s PR campaign included many different tactics to increase buzz surrounding the revival prior to the premiere date. These tactics included:
- Luke’s Diner pop-ups
- Festival of Four Seasons
- Recap videos
- Video shout-outs to fans on Twitter
- Kirk’s advice column on Facebook
- Town hall meetings on Twitter
- Snapchat filters
- Stars Hollow website
Each of these tactics was implemented to increase anticipation prior to the premiere of the series.
The campaign ran from the official announcement of the reboot on Jan. 29, 2016 to the premiere of the four-part series on Nov. 25, 2016. While the in-person events stopped with the Festival of Four Seasons, the “Gilmore Girls” campaign is still very active on social media.
The campaign was very active on social media, and therefore gained a lot of media impressions. According to MentionMapp, after announcing the reboot, tweets with the words “Gilmore Girls” in them increased to 24,000 on Jan. 29, 2016. The hashtag #festivaloffourseasons gained 115,064 media impressions following the event on Twitter. Following the premiere on Netflix on Nov. 25, 2016, there were 1.6 million media impressions garnered in the first 13 hours, and 1.4 million “Gilmore Girls” mentions on Twitter in the same time frame. According to AdAge, the revival ranked as the No. 3 most-watched original series on Netflix following behind the season 4 premiere of “Orange is the New Black” at No. 2, and the season 1 premiere of “Fuller House” at No. 1.
Hope Salyer is a junior public relations major and journalism and communication double minor. Hope is serving as the Chief Financial Officer of EMU PRSSA. This is Hope’s first semester serving for the PRSSA E-board. A Michigan native, she hopes to start her career working for an agency in the Detroit area. Her dream is to become the public relations coordinator for the Detroit Tigers. Contact Hope on Twitter @hsalyer01 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org.