Bridal and Lifestyle Brands are creating content to capitalize on the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton.
Brides.com is throwing a Royal Sleepover the night before the wedding for staff and has created an elaborate online kit for readers who want to do the same. The kit includes guides to décor, food, cocktails, playlists and favors along with an invitation and even a sign to hang outside the door that says, “Shhhh… Royal Sleepover in progress.” Brides.com worked with Sandra Downie Event Designs to create the materials.
“We expect many friends are getting together at the crack of dawn (to watch),” said Executive Editor Amy Elliott. “Many of us remember getting up to watch Princess Di, so that was the start of the conversation and we really wanted to bring the concept to our readers on the web.”
Twelve staff members will participate in the sleepover with teams at the Brides.com office and Soho House, a New York venue selected because of its size and London connection.
Brides.com staffers will blog and tweet throughout the night as the wedding unfolds. Elliott says, “I anticipate it will be an Oscars night-like experience,” complete with commentary on guests and attire.
Editors have blogged the developments on Brides.com’s Aisle Say blog since February. “Our lives revolve around generating ideas for people’s weddings, so we took that approach toward planning the sleepover,” Elliott says.
Gown retailer David’s Bridal has a Royal Wedding Watch page on its website with predictions about what Middleton will wear. It also asks consumers to vote for their favorite tiaras on its Facebook page. David’s Bridal has nearly 89,000 “likes.” A rep declined a request for comment.
Lifestyle cable channel TLC, which is in the middle of week-long programming event leading up to the nuptials, has also been active. A Twitter photo contest last week asked viewers to upload photos of wedding-related items like ugly bridesmaid dresses, grooms’ cakes, and wedding weather disasters.
Gayle Weiswasser, VP of social media communications at Discovery Communications, which owns TLC, said traffic from the contest was “on the low end.”
“We suspect that it might have been too early to ask for photos and interaction,” she said.
TLC had a better response to questions posted on its ‘What Not To Wear’ and ‘Say Yes to the Dress’ Facebook pages this week. TLC asked viewers to post photos of their wedding dresses and engagement rings on those Facebook pages and it netted 100 submissions each. TLC has 573,000 Facebook fans, What Not to Wear has 641,000, and Say Yes to the Dress has 517,000.
TLC also has a “Princess Yourself” app on its website that asks users to upload photos of themselves to see what they’d look like as princesses. Weiswasser says the app launched mid-February and has 260,500 page views to date. Traffic spiked on April 25 when it was posted on TLC’s Facebook page – from an average of 2,000 daily page views to nearly 60,000.
During a live event in Times Square on Friday at 5:00 a.m., three couples will get married. TLC talent will provide commentary and singer Colbie Caillat will perform. Live-tweets from the event will use the hashtag #RoyalWeddingTLC to convey the proceedings to TLC’s 56,000 followers. It has also been tweeting royal trivia facts and asking viewers to tweet photos of themselves in the lead-up to the ceremony.
That’s not all. TLC has rebranded its Facebook and Twitter pages with Royal Wedding content, published a wedding slideshow featuring TLC talen, and is also offering Royal Wedding stickers on entertainment check-in site GetGlue. As of Monday, there were about 4500 check-ins for Royal Wedding Week programming, Weiswasser says.
The promotions join a significant official digital presence for the royal nuptials on a website, Flickr photo stream, and Facebook page.
The website has information and a YouTube video from the British Monarchy’s channel that invites commoners to watch a live stream of Friday’s ceremony. The Facebook page provides information about traveling to London for the big day, the charitable gift fund for those interested in making a donation in lieu of gifts and the Royal Wedding video message book that enables anyone to record well wishes for the happy couple.
The Twitter handle @ClarenceHouse, which tweets about The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, Prince William and Prince Harry, has 46,000 followers and has been tweeting information about the wedding using the #royalwedding hashtag.
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