National Geographic's (Nat Geo) magazine, linear and digital properties are often seen as standalone properties with different goals. With the launch of Nat Geo's highly anticipated 'Mars' event (premiering on linear on November 14th, first episode currently available online), that is changing.
Of all the planets in our solar system, none has captured our collective imagination like Mars. Follow the first human mission to Mars, set in 2033, as the crew struggles to safely land on and colonize the planet. Tracing the thrilling quest to make Mars home, National Geographic presents a new breed of programming, blending cinema-quality scripted drama set in the future with documentary sequences that features current space-technology pioneers.
At their launch event in New York City, Found Remote interviewed Global Creative Director Andy Baker about the multi-platform launch.
To understand how important this is for the Nat Geo rebrand and multiplatform approach, Christopher Albert, the EVP of Global Communications & Talent at National Geographic answered the following questions.
Found Remote: How Mars fits into the Nat Geo rebrand?
Christopher Albert: We have been talking about MARS for more than a year now. When we first announced the show in July of 2015, it marked a shift in our programming strategy to bigger budget, more brand-definitional programming events. And now that we are on the eve of the premiere, it marks a huge turning point for our network in realizing our vision to become the world’s leading destination for premium science, adventure and exploration. And since MARS marks our realization of our new vision, we also thought it was a perfect opportunity to refresh everything about our network to represent the shift. And the great thing about it is that once we started down the path of the rebrand, and settled on the idea of “Further” (which by the way for us is more than a tagline, it is a state of mind), the entire company – both Partners and the Society – joined the effort. So with this rebrand we will truly be ONE National Geographic in the minds of consumers.
FR: Why a unified multi-platform approach is important, why it's happening now and what the details are?
CA: It's really a result of what the formation of National Geographic Partners makes possible. When all of the media businesses were consolidated last year under one umbrella, it afforded us an opportunity to all work together on large tentpole projects like MARS. It won't happen for everything we do, but when it makes sense, we can galvanize a media arsenal that is really unrivaled in the media landscape.