Country Mile
2020 Finalist

Country Mile

USA TODAY NETWORK

McLean, United States

Category Best Use of Audio

Overview of this campaign

Country music continues to grow its audience base across the nation as artists weave their way into today’s pop culture. The growth into mainstream and the timing of Ken Burns’ “Country Music” documentary offered the opportunity to provide consumers with an insider’s look into the industry and more importantly the artists that remind us of a simpler time.

The content campaign, dubbed Country Mile, included a 40-page tabloid magazine sold on newsstands around the country, a special section for print subscribers and a digital landing page featuring dozens of news stories, photo galleries and videos. The centerpiece of the campaign was the ten-episode podcast series featuring appearances by some of the genre’s biggest stars.

The overall goal was to offer this content through unique storytelling and media – we wanted to engage our audiences in new and innovative ways through podcasts and live storytelling experiences.

This campaign afforded us the opportunity to surface content across many vehicles but also to connect and engage with country music fans in new ways from Nashville to Detroit to Phoenix and beyond. The extension of storytelling from the lyrics to the personalities of the artists allowed for a dynamic and powerful podcast series featuring artists like Garth Brooks, Dolly Parton, Vince Gill, Martina McBryde, Brad Paisley and more. 

With the podcast series specifically, we were interested in expanding our reach and driving downloads. We used the following marketing tactics to drive listeners: digital, print and email campaigns across our largest markets.

 

Media:

  • Digital & Print Ads – Largest USA TODAY NETWORK sites.
  • Emails were sent to active subscribers, former subscribers and leads. We created an email journey for those who continued to engage with the podcast, delivering one each week a new podcast dropped.

  • Paid social in Nashville, Music City USA.

Results for this campaign

  • Editorial and marketing efforts secured more than 10.5M page views network-wide. The content was read in 210 DMAs in the U.S. and dozens of countries. Given the international interest in Country Music, the international market proved to be important in the success of the package.
  • 15,427 downloads.

Contact

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