Matthias Puschmann is a Co-Founder and Managing Director at VAST MEDIA, a media research and consulting company based in Berlin that provides international television industry leaders with qualitative competitive market analysis of digital entertainment and content marketing.
In the run-up to the premiere of its new drama series "Billions" on January 17, 2016, Showtime partnered with Shazam for a dedicated promotion campaign involving real US currency. In order to unlock exclusive content of the new series as well as for a chance to attend an exclusive screening of "Billions", fans are encouraged to use the Shazam app's visual recognition feature and scan any $1, $5 or $20 bill. For each of the three bills, there is different content available.
After scanning a bill and watching the exclusive video content, the fans additionally receive an exclusive invitation for a free screening of the first two episodes of the show at select theaters in the US. To accept, they simply have to tap on 'RSVP Now' which automatically redirects them to the entertainment news website HitFix where they can register for the event by filling out a form.
The promotion campaign was announced by both Showtime and Shazam on their social media accounts. In addition, Showtime made the "Billions" pilot available for free on its official website SHO.com on January 1, 2016, more than two weeks before the show's official premiere, as well as on several other platforms including YouTube, Facebook, iTunes, Hulu, Roku, PlayStation Vue, its stand-alone streaming service Showtime Anytime, and a number of television providers' free On Demand services and websites.