You wouldn’t guess that MSNBC, a traditional cable news network and Musical.ly a popular app used by teens would be a fit. Enter the Global Citizen festival (happening this Saturday), bringing together 60,000 people in Central Park and it starts to make a lot more sense. The network realized that it was a natural match with the music coming from the festival.
MSNBC is the exclusive broadcast partner and will be airing the festival starting at 3pm on linear and streaming at msnbc.com/globalcitizen. So far tens of thousands of videos were created using the hashtag #IAmAGlobalCitizen. Found Remote interviewed MSNBC Digital Director Farra Kober about the partnership.
Found Remote: Why the partnership with Musical.ly?
Farra Kober: At MSNBC, we’d been looking for a way to introduce the Global Citizen festival and our partnership with the organization to the next generation of “Global Citizens.” The festival is an incredible celebration of people taking steps to advance the mission of ending global poverty. By televising (and livestreaming) the festival on MSNBC, we’re able to bring that mission to many more people than can be reached in Central Park alone, and this year we’ve partnered with Musical.ly to reach the next generation of Global Citizens. The app’s enormous popularity among the youth demo, and its core in music, is a natural match.
FR: How did it come about?
FK: We are partnering with Musical.ly in two ways: first, a challenge in the lead up to this year’s festival to introduce the idea that small actions can lead to big change, and second, a special red carpet experience exclusively streamed on Live.ly and Musical.ly that will bring musers into the live festival experience no matter where they are. Musical.ly enlisted Lucki Starr, an influencer on the platform who will now be hosting our red carpet livestream as the first-ever MSNBC Musical.ly correspondent. We thought it was important to showcase a red carpet host who really understands the platform and its user base.
FR: Why is the festival important for MSNBC?
FK: This is the 4th year MSNBC has been the premier media partner of the Global Citizen Festival. We are inspired by the organization and have joined in its mission to create positive, tangible change in our world. Through broadcasting and livestreaming the Festival (online and OTT via our new digital hub, MSNBC.com/GlobalCitizen), as well as producing original creative content surrounding the Global Citizen goals, we hope to shed light on this mission and bring it to as large an audience as possible. According to Global Citizen, there have been over 12 million “actions taken on behalf of the world’s poor, these actions have resulted in 30 billion dollars in commitments to end extreme poverty, which is set to affect over 1 billion lives.” It’s an honor to be a part of making such change.
FR: Who are the talent that are involved?
FK: MSNBC’s Chris Hayes, NY Times best-selling author and host of the Emmy-winning show “ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES” and Joy Reid, award-winning journalist and host of “AM Joy” are hosting MSNBC’s exclusive broadcast of the Global Citizen Festival on Saturday, September 23rd. MSNBC correspondent Jacob Soboroff and Savannah Sellers, host of NBC News’ newly launched “Stay Tuned” Snapchat news show, will serve as an on-the-ground co-hosts for the live coverage. Lucki Starr, a top muser, is serving as MSNBC’s Live.ly correspondent on the carpet.
The festival as a whole features a truly star-studded lineup. Aaron Paul, Bridget Moynahan, Camren Bicondova, Connie Britton, Daymond John, Deborra-lee Furness, Demi Lovato, Dianna Agron, Elaine Welteroth, Erin Richards, Freida Pinto, Hugh Jackman, Joan Smalls, Kal Penn, Lupita Nyong’o, Malin Akerman, Mark Cuban, Michelle Monaghan, Priyanka Chopra, Rachel Brosnahan, Serge Ibaka, and Wendy Williams will appear as the hosts of the 2017 Global Citizen Festival. The event is headlined by Stevie Wonder, Green Day, The Killers, The Lumineers and featuring The Chainsmokers with special guests Pharrell Williams, Big Sean, Andra Day and Alessia Cara.
FR: What is the strategy behind it and goals?
FK: Global Citizen Festival is an opportunity for 60,000 Global Citizens in Central Park to hold world leaders accountable for their commitments to help end extreme poverty by 2030. MSNBC supports Global Citizen and these goals, and together with Musical.ly is helping to spread the festival’s message far and wide.
FR: Anything else?
FK: In addition to Musical.ly and MSNBC’s on-air coverage, this year Snapchat will play an important role at the Festival. Savannah Sellers, host of NBC News’ newly launched “Stay Tuned” Snapchat Show, will be joining MSNBC correspondent Jacob Soboroff as an on-the-ground correspondent. Sellers will be both on-air and on Snapchat, getting the backstage scoop at Global Citizen Festival. The day after the Festival, “Stay Tuned” will also feature special content and highlights from the day.