This is a chance for the organization to get up to date.
What I’m proposing is an 86 night extravaganza on social media highlighting the nominees in each and every category.
Let’s speak English. The Grammys can’t afford to piss off CBS, its benefactor. Without that big check the Grammys are SOL. But when you’re beholden to the dying old you’re behind the 8 ball when change finally arrives, and it’s hard to catch up. As it is the Grammys are out of touch with the public. As are the Oscars. You leave the public behind at your peril, you must keep people INVOLVED!
So it’s an 86 night pre-game show, a run-up to the actual ceremony, and it takes place on YouTube. Why YouTube? Because it has the most eyeballs and it’s free. Sure, some other platform will offer a big check, but that defeats the purpose. Sometimes you have to leave money on the table in the furtherance of your goal, which in this case is exposing the most people to the most music.
Let’s be clear, the public is flummoxed, they don’t know where and how to find new music. Did you read that MusicBusinessWorldwide story about 82% of the U.S. market being catalog? That’s right, over three-quarters, and it keeps going UP! Turns out the public is tuning out new music, or doesn’t know where to tune it in, so this is where the Grammys and YouTube come in.
Every night it’s a new category. That’s right, for 86 days straight a Grammy category is going to be featured. An explanation of the category, maybe even some history, and then the nominees themselves. And sure, it can be one half hour long stream, but even better is to break it up. This is how you do it. You can consume the whole thing straight, or you can consume the bits you want to, which are featured conspicuously on the Grammy YouTube page AND LIVE THERE FOREVER!
Now of course, you can just play the recordings, or the music videos, but with people paying attention, nominees will clamor to present new renditions. Which the Grammys will embrace. Cut it acoustic, do it live, make a new video, it’s the artist’s choice, and it’s at the artists expense.
Now the big categories are spread out through the three months. And maybe the big categories even get two nights in a row. And one of the reasons we do this is because we’re going to tie-in TikTok. For each big category we’re going to have a TikTok contest/challenge. With the winner flown out to the ultimate Grammy ceremony where they get to meet and create a TikTok video with the act whose song they created the clip to. And, of course, pictures will be on the Grammy Instagram account. The Instagram account will be an endless stream of information and photos for the 86 days.
The key is to create a destination people return to on a regular basis. One and done is history. Like too many albums. They promote them and they’re over in a weekend, if not a day. That’s the wrong paradigm in today’s culture, you keep yourself out of the public eye at your peril. And one long Grammy show on CBS filled with commercials at an appointed time is so last century it’s almost not worth staging. Then again, there’s that contract with that big payment. Only 56% of Americans still watch satellite and cable TV. Think about that, Dan Bongino’s YouTube channel reaches more people than CNN. You’ve got to go where the people are, and make it easy for them and ON DEMAND, so they can watch it when they want to.
If other outlets want to get on board…
No. Everybody needs to know to start at YouTube, you can’t muddy the water here.
And let’s hope that this Grammy extravaganza causes outsiders to participate, not only on TikTok. We want naysayers to create their own videos complaining about who has been left out. And if the Grammys are smart, and they rarely are, an award must be added that is voted for online. I know the ballots are in, so we’re going to create a new category, Entertainer of the Year. I’m not married to the moniker, the hipper the better, but let the fans vote.
Make it available and get the fans involved. It’s not a difficult concept.
And CBS will have no complaints, this will drive traffic to its ultimate awards telecast. And as far as CBS having its own streaming platform… They can give the show away for free there, they can capitalize on the show, but they get none of the run-up on their outlet, because they’ve got too small a footprint and no buzz.
And in truth the awards ceremony should be on Netflix. Which can afford to pay for it and would. But then there’s that old CBS contract to contend with. Once again, you’re married to the past at your peril. But in this case the Grammys have some options and they should grasp them and try to save the organization, because they’ve done a good job of streaming straight ahead into irrelevance.