Special Report: Brand Live Stream
Will Clark, Contributing Editor, BrandStorytelling.tv
Highlighting Impactful Live Streaming
Celebrity/Influencer: Various artists, including Miley Cyrus, Foo Fighters, The Lumineers
Brand: Bud Light Seltzer
Reach: 200k+ (Friday only)
Time: Oct 16-18
This past weekend, Bud Light Seltzer, YouTube and NIVA, the National Independent Venue Association, partnered to create one of the most ambitious virtual music festivals of the year. The event was also one of the most impactful branded livestreams, raising millions of dollars from individual contributions for the NIVA Emergency Relief Fund, along with raising awareness for the Save Our Stages Act.
The $10 billion Save Our Stages Act has been sponsored by 147 Senators, and if it passes, it would be critical for the nation’s independent venues. Many of these venues were featured during the weekend’s performances — 26 different stages in total. The scale of the operation itself was staggering, with 35 artists and dozens of hours of performances.
In June, NIVA conducted a survey and found that 90% of independent venues across the U.S. will close if they do not receive federal aid. Currently, NIVA has aided these venues by facilitating direct donations to these venues, as well as creating their own central fund. Part of Bud Light Seltzer’s contribution to the festival was a $1 million donation to NIVA.
“We have proudly partnered with iconic artists and venues around the country and now we want to do our part to ensure that small music venues can remain in business for when we can all come together in-person again,” Azania Andrews Vice President, Consumer Connections at Anheuser-Busch told Variety.
NIVA has aggressively been building their presence on YouTube in preparation for the livestream. In early September, they still only had 300 subscribers, but they now have more than 16k as of Saturday morning, and that’s continuing to climb. NIVA’s success has grown exponentially as a direct result of their livestream efforts and partnership with YouTube
According to a September press release, "YouTube and NIVA will work on unique programming that will help bring live performances back into music venues safely,” perhaps indicating that this relationship will continue with more programming to come.