TV Guide Sees Path to Social Engagement

TV Guide Magazine has partnered with social TV platform Philo. A new column in the magazine encourages readers to use Philo to check in to the top shows it features each week. The promotion also invites them to chat live with other fans and win virtual badges and real-world prizes each week.

In turn, Philo gains exposure to the magazine’s 14 million readers.

TV Guide’s new column lists the top shows each week, like Amazing Race: Unfinished Business, CSI and Justified. Philo users who check in to these shows – which change each week based on TV Guide’s recommendations – will unlock a “Too Hot for TV” badge and be entered to win prizes like Logitech remote controls. Participants also have a chance to win a grand prize trip to TV Guide’s annual Hot List party in Los Angeles later this year.

Each viewer check-in counts as one entry; if a viewer checks in to all ten featured shows, he or she will receive 20 additional entries, says Philo CEO David Levy.

“[TV Guide] reached out to us about how they can get their readers involved in social TV, so we came up with concept,” Levy says. “We make sure people are winning virtual awards while checking in to the shows that TV Guide is recommending.”

Since TV Guide has more reach than Philo, it is handling the promotion, while Philo is dealing with the technology.

“We always look for innovative ways to engage and interact with our magazine audience – a passionate group of television enthusiasts,” said Debra Birnbaum, editor-in-chief of TV Guide, in a prepared statement. “We are excited about this promotion with Philo, which will allow readers of the magazine to interact with each other in a brand new way.”

The promotion kicked off with the February 14 issue of TV Guide and will run until the Hot List party in November.

Philo has also worked with NBC, MTV Networks, AMC, Disney, Starcom and Spike. According to Levy, Philo has “tens of thousands” of users.

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