I am a big fan of media, good films and television are completely wonderful things. At the moment I follow several different television shows, and one of them I’m going to tell you about is called ‘The Blacklist’. This show is on NBC, and is in the genre of action, thriller, and definitely adventure with a little mystery thrown in. It stars James Spader and Megan Boone primarily, and you’ve probably seen James’ face plastered all over Manhattan in various subway stations, on the sides of buses, on billboards, or moving advertisement screens. His character is Raymond Reddington, an international criminal who in the pilot episode turns himself in to the FBI for immunity in exchange for the information he has on other criminals’ activity. The list of people he is after is how the show got its’ name: ‘The Blacklist’.
I chose to blog about this show because of a recent internet and ad sweepstakes that was done to gain attention for the show to alert its fans to the fact that the show is moving from its usual Monday night airtime to Thursdays. I thought this was a good example of using social media to gain a bigger audience and interest in a product or in this case, a television show.
Specific cities were chosen across the United States where a “decoy’ ( someone dressed as Mr. Reddington or “Red” in the black suit with a black fedora) would be that you had to find. They did about 5 cities a day this past week (Monday through Thursday) at different times and released clues as to where you could find this decoy and a code word you needed to tell them to win. First person to find Red’s decoy won $500, and anyone else after that could win a show t-shirt while supplies lasted. You were to follow the show on Twitter: @NYCBlacklist , and that’s where you would see the clues and updates on if the money had been found yet.
I began watching this show last fall when a friend recommended it to me, and completely loved it! I found out about this sweepstakes and began following them on Twitter last week. I was excited about the chance to win the money (who wouldn’t be?) , and waited anxiously all week for them to announce the clue for New York City. It was Thursday- the last day of it, and of course the clue was released at a time I was at work. However, the clue was easy to figure out and I wanted to try to get there. However, while I was debating trying to take a long break, someone tweeted a picture of them with a Blacklist t shirt saying they “didn’t get there in time for the money but they got a shirt anyway”. I asked the Twitter user if the money for NYC was gone and she said, “Yes, I got here 10 minutes after they tweeted the clue, and 10 people were already here!” I was sad about that, but this IS New York City. I was hoping not enough people would be on Twitter during the work day, but I guess that idea was wrong. The other cities for that day like Raleigh, took a bit longer to be found, they even got a second clue to help them look. I imagine other cities took more time because it’s not as easy to get around there as it is here. They can’t just hop on a train or a bus and walk wherever they are going, they have to get in a car and drive there.
This giveaway no doubt gained their Twitter feed some followers, perhaps new show viewers and definitely made people more aware of the show itself. Money is something everyone is interested in and what better common denominator to use when trying to get people’s attention? They are also having a sweepstakes for a chance to win $25,000 by entering on the NBC website: www.redontherun.com . You just have to answer a question about Thursday’s episode and enter your contact information.
Below is the trailer aired when the show first began, if you’re interested, the entire first season is available on Netflix to watch.