Viacom Digital Studios Shows Off Social Content at NewFronts

Viacom Digital Studios, heading the company's effort to recapture young viewers no longer watching cable by reaching them online and on social platforms, announced new programming on Snapchat, Twitter and YouTube during its presentation at the new West Coast edition of the NewFronts on Wednesday.

“Viacom Digital Studios is developing hundreds of hours of premium, digital-first programming designed to engage young audiences across the social and mobile platforms they love most,” said Kelly Day, president of Viacom Digital Studios. “We’re continuing to build on our incredible momentum with expanded platform partnerships, talent deals, strategic acquisitions and new original formats to super-serve our fans.”

At the upfront, Viacom announced that Nickelodeon has signed 13-year old actress/singer Annie LeBlanc to a talent deal. She made her YouTube debut at age four and has 6.6 million Instagram followers. LeBlanc will be starring in linear and digital content for Nickelodeon.

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VDS said it expanded its relationship with Snap and is creating 10 new series, including Clean Slate from MTV, Filthy Living from MTV and De’Arrta and Ken’s Prank Show from BET. Snapchat is also getting 500 episodes of Viacom shows and season 2 of MTV Cribs for Snapchat returns this month.

Twitter users will be getting news programming from Viacom brands. BET Breaks and MTV News: Unfiltered were launched at the beginning of the month. Extra Damn Day from Comedy Central debuted this week and MTV New Presents: Need to Know premieres on Nov. 15.

VDS is creating YouTube Channels for fans of some of Viacom network franchises, including MTV’s Jersey Shore, Comedy Central Stand-Up and MTV’s Wild ‘N Out.

Viacom says that over its social footprint of 850 million followers, it get almost 2.5 billion views per month and 3.5 billion minutes watched.

Since the launch of VDS, social video views have increased 112% and watch time is up 104%.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.