GRAMMYS Revival: 2012 Activation Snapshot

Traditional media channels posted record breaking numbers for the 2012 GRAMMYs. Building on last year’s record 26.6 million viewers, the rights and media owners saw brands and sponsors battle to become part of the 2012 show. CBS, which broadcasts the awards live in surround sound and HD, sold out it ad inventory weeks in advance.


The viewing figures, perhaps further boosted by the tragic death of Whitney Houston on the eve of the ceremony, came in at 39.9 million according to Nielsen’s preliminary figures. This was a 50% bump up from last year, the largest GRAMMYs audience since 1984 and the second biggest in GRAMMY history.


It even exceeded the 2011 Oscars broadcast which was seen by 37.6 million viewers.


The event was also supported on radio via Westwood One worldwide and covered online at www.GRAMMY.con and on www.CBS.com (including a three-day live coverage show).


Ad rates for 30-second TV spots in the 2012 show commanded $800,000 apiece. This may be well below the Super Bowl’s $3.5 to $4m cost and the Academy Awards $1.7m rate, but is a major jump from its 10-year low point of $426,000 in 2010.


“Demand has been really strong, even prior to the announcement of the lineup of talent that is going to be there,” says Linda Rene, senior VP primetime sales and innovation at CBS, which has been broadcasting the Grammys since 1973.


Major advertiser used the show to debut big new commercials. For example Microsoft’s Bing search engine premiered a new 60-second spot starring rapper Wiz Khalifa that plays up the search engine’s tag line – “Bing is for doing.”



Prior to the Grammys telecast, E! Actually premiered the spot itself in a first-of-its-kind integration during its Live From the Red Carpet preshow coverage. This show featured anchor Giuliana Rancic introducing the spot (his co-anchor Ryan Seacrest is also a Bing partner.


“Our new ad provides an intimate, insider look at Wiz and his creative process,” said Bing director of advertising Sean Carver.


The revival in interest and viewers ensured an impressive line up of sponsors for the 54th annual GRAMMY awards, which includes Delta Air Lines, Harman, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Hyundai, MasterCard, People, Pepsi, Procter & Gamble (CoverGirl, Olay and Venus), Waste Management, and Dial Global Radia.


The CBS telecast’s automotive partners were General Motors and Ford. The latter will promote its Explorer vehicle and music-related in-car features like the car’s voice-activated Sync entertainment and communications system.


So, with the two car companies having an exclusive lock on automotive spots during the show itself, Recording Academy official vehicle partner Hyundai promoted its own collaboration with the Recording Academy (the music-inspired documentary Re: Generation) at events surrounding this year’s awards show.



Hyundai’s Sonata Hybrid was on display for GRAMMY attendees to see and interact with as they enter and exit the show and head to the official GRAMMY Celebration after-party. While inside the after-party, Hyundai will feature its award-winning Equus for guests to view and they will also provide guests with luxury lounges equipped with cigars and a gaming area.


Delta backed the event for the fifth year as the “official airline sponsor” of The Recording Academy and GRAMMY Awards.


In 2012 Delta provided an opportunity for fans of the Delta Facebook page to be a part of the excitement while attending this year’s GRAMMY Awards. Throughout the year Delta will continue to include GRAMMY-inspired programming on entertainment-equipped flights, furthering the brand’s support and association with music and its makers.


Beginning in January, Delta flights spotlighted in-flight GRAMMY programming consisting of a dedicated GRAMMY radio channel featuring past Record Of The Year-winning recordings.


After the February awards show, Delta will also begin featuring the 2012 GRAMMY Nominees album on its flights.


Harman returns for a fourth year as the “official sound partner” of the 54th Annual GRAMMY Awards and title sponsor of the exclusive Pre-GRAMMY Gala, produced by Clive Davis and The Recording Academy.


Harman Chairman Dinesh Paliwal will host VIPs at the Pre-GRAMMY Gala and Harman will highlight its newest products at GRAMMY Week events, allowing the music industry to interact with their state-of-the-art home, automotive and professional audio products.


Harman’s brands AKG Acoustics GmbH and JBL Professional were recognized by The Recording Academy with Technical GRAMMY Awards in 2010 and 2005, respectively, for excellence in technology innovation.


Harman Kardon also debuted two new TV spots during the show. One was a commercial for its JBL speakers “Hear the Truth” campaign – starring Paul McCartney and featuring his new single “My Valentine”.



The other is a U.S. premiere of a Harman Kardon home entertainment spot starring Jennifer Lopez and featuring an original 30-second score composed by Will.i.am. Both ads were directed by Casino Royale helmer Martin Campbell.



“In the music world, the Grammys are our Super Bowl,” says Harman Kardon chief marketing officer Jeff Willard, who snagged McCartney for a rare commercial appearance. “In today’s world, artists are interested in doing promotions they might not have done a few years ago. For Paul, he can talk about his new album and do it in a way that it helps JBL out. He’s able to preview a song to the world.”


Hilton Hotels, a GRAMMYs partner for more than 20 years, used its 2012 right to give its team members and guests from across the globe the opportunity to attend this year’s GRAMMY Awards.


Team members submitted videos showing why they are a rock star for a chance to attend Music’s Biggest Night.


HHonors members were given the opportunity to bid their HHonors points for a once-in-a-lifetime travel package to attend various GRAMMY Week events. Hilton then donated the cash equivalent of the total points to the GRAMMY Foundation.


Hilton asked guests to tell them about their music-inspired trip through the ‘Go To The GRAMMYs’ contest on Facebook where one lucky guest will win a trip to the 55th GRAMMY Awards in 2013.


For the second year, the flagship brand of Hilton Worldwide is a sponsor of www.GRAMMY.com Community Blogger Program and this year, Hilton has become one of the title partners of the exclusive Pre-GRAMMY Gala, which is held at the Beverly Hilton.


After recently renewing its overall partnership with The Recording Academy and GRAMMY Awards, MasterCard has returned as the “official financial services and payment sponsor” of the GRAMMYs. Each year MasterCard hosts contest winners from around the world, giving them a truly up close and personal “priceless” experience with a variety of festivities.


This year MasterCard cardholders will attend the exclusive Pre-GRAMMY Gala and accommodated with the best seats in the house during the GRAMMY telecast and have access to experience Priceless Lounges both during the GRAMMYs and during the GRAMMY Celebration after-party.


The winners’ experiences will be shared through MasterCard’s social media properties, and for the first time MasterCard will also give Los Angeles residents a chance to have a “priceless” seat on the red carpet in the MasterCard Grandstand. MasterCard’s partnership also includes support for the star-studded Pre-GRAMMY Gala and official GRAMMY Celebration after-party.


For the third year, MasterCard also presented the Celebration’s Jazz Lounge featuring members of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra playing Latin-inspired jazz to complement this year’s “Carnival” theme.


Print media partner People Magazine, in addition to its own extensive coverage of the event, put out a special GRAMMY wrap-up issue on 18 February offering in-depth coverage and interviews from its www.people.com position on the red carpet.


Procter & Gamble was another big event partner in 2012, using its rights to push products such as CoverGirl, Olay and Venus. This partnership’s objective was to help bring the ‘beauty back to GRAMMYs’ with a large digital component. CoverGirl, Olay and Venus kicked off GRAMMY Week on Monday with the inaugural GRAMMY Glam event, and www.GRAMMY.com curated the beauty conversation online at www.glam.grammy.com.


The conversation began the night the GRAMMY nominations were revealed on 30 November and included the opportunity for guests to take “glam” photos at “The GRAMMY Nominations Concert Live!! – Countdown To Music’s Biggest Night” that were uploaded to the official GRAMMY Facebook page.


The beauty conversation that took place from nominations through GRAMMY Week will be highlighted on www.GRAMMY.com and on the GRAMMYs’ social sites via the hashtag #GRAMMYGlam.


For the fourth year Waste Management was the “official recycling partner” of The Recording Academy and GRAMMY Awards. Waste Management continues to support The Recording Academy throughout the year – raising and reinforcing member and consumer awareness regarding the importance of responsibly recycling electronics and engaging in consistent recycling behaviors at home, at work and “on-the-go.”


Waste Management co-presented The Sound Of Social Change Summit with The Recording Academy — a thought-provoking conversation that took place on 10 February. In addition, Waste Management will provide guests an engaging Recycling Rocks lounge at the GRAMMY Celebration after-party featuring a DJs, an interactive photo booth and iconic artist scenery.


Radio partner Dial Global Radio Network also produced its annual “Backstage at the GRAMMYs” radio remotes, bringing in radio stations from across America, as well as radio stations from various countries around the globe, to broadcast live from GRAMMY rehearsals.










Hilton Grammys Facebook



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