CHUM’s MuchMusic has yet again broken new ground in multi-platform fan access by making full episodes of hit reality show VJ Search: The Series available for free download from muchmusic.com. The station is the first in Canada to offer a downloadable version of one of its programs to computers, iPods and other mobile devices.
“Connecting with fans has always been at the heart of everything we do at MuchMusic,” said David Kines, Vice President, CHUM Television Music and Youth Services. “With VJ Search: The Series now available for download, we’re bringing the show to fans in another exclusive, innovative way. Now viewers can watch anytime, in any place.”
“CHUM has a strong and hugely successful history of leveraging online and mobile content to extend our relationship with our audience,” said Maria Hale, Vice President, Content Business Development, CHUM Television. “We are thrilled to be able to now offer another way for our audiences to connect with our programming by making it accessible online, in its entirety and free of charge.”
Since VJ Search’s January 30th premiere, CHUM has engaged its viewers with an exciting collection of interactive exclusives. Online at muchmusic.com, fans can find exclusive behind-the-scenes storylines, photos, commentary from the eliminated contestants, the personal blogs of the finalists, judges and host, and view full streaming of each episode. Visits to the MuchMusic Web site increased by 60% after the broadcast of the first episode.
Fans can also have their say throughout the series by participating in a number of live and interactive polls. Online at muchmusic.com, and via their mobile phones by texting “VJ (+ first name of the finalist)” to 54321 (50 cents per message), viewers can sound off on who they think is going “off the air” next. Results are available instantaneously so fans can see what the rest of Canada is thinking. In the final episodes, the power is placed directly in the hands of the fans as it comes down to them to cast their vote and ultimately decide who will become the next MuchMusic VJ.
In addition, cell phone users can obtain more original content, including private confessionals from the finalists, and sign up for special VJ Search alerts by texting SEARCH to 332211 (15 cents per message). New exclusive video content will continue to be added to the MuchMusic Web site and available to cell phone users for the duration of the VJ Search series.
CHUM and MuchMusic have been leaders in viewer interactivity since the 1995 launch of muchmusic.com. CHUM launched Canada’s first third-party wireless content store (shop.muchmusic.com) and was also the first broadcaster to distribute original video content created specifically for mobile phones.