With the number of TV shows being produced each year growing exponentially, the success of a show’s pilot episode is becoming more important than ever.
One way networks are helping their chances is via Facebook. In the past few months alone we’ve seen USA Network post the premiere of the hugely successful Mr. Robot on the platform; HBO posted the premiere episodes of Brink and Ballers on Facebook prior to their linear debuts; Amazon did the same with Catastrophe, Fox with Wayward Pines, and ABC Family with Kevin at Work.
Networks are at once able to build more buzz (and do it cheaply) than they would have been able to for the premiere of a new show by releasing it on the world’s leading social platform; more, for viewers who watch the episode on Facebook first, it leads to more marked linear viewership increases from week 1 to week 2.
AMC knows that Walking Dead fans are sufficiently excited for the new spinoff series Fear the Walking Dead, and don’t need to pre-release the episode. However, they were able to take advantage of the increasingly-used tactic by previewing the new show – sharing the first three minutes of the premiere episode via The Walking Dead’s Facebook page (which boasts 600,000 fans).
Below, Fear the Walking Dead’s post. The premiere airs this Sunday on AMC.