At WatchSupernatural.org, we’re looking towards the future, and laying the groundwork to support our show’s long term success. Fan campaigns have a long history of desperation, arising as noisy, last ditch efforts among bands of panicked fans. What Supernatural needs now isn’t saving, but exposure, promotion, and a positive media profile to generate the ratings a show of its quality deserves.
Staffed with dedicated veterans of successful fan campaigns and PR experience, WatchSupernatural.org is focused on proactive fan activities dedicated to both reaching new viewers and cultivating a positive image of Supernatural and its fans in the press.
The centerpiece of our April efforts will be the launch of a fandom charity drive. Supernatural is a show about two blue collar boys making a difference in the lives of men and women around the nation. At WatchSupernatural.org, we’re taking that lofty concept from the realm of fantasy into the world we share. In the process, we’ll focus on generating buzz for the show in the press, and establishing the Supernatural fandom as a fandom of conscience, instead of the mooning teeny-boppers past publications have us pinned as.
Other plans are in the works. We’re exploring promising avenues for getting Supernatural into libraries and video stores across the country, promoting Supernatural at broad-topic fan conventions, and attracting viewers through guerilla marketing efforts both on the streets and on the web.
Our website, www.WatchSupernatural.org, aims to become a database of practical ways for the individual fan to promote the show. On the forums, you can help shape the face and direction of new campaign efforts with your own ideas and enthusiasm. We encourage feedback from fans of every background, whether you're a casual viewer or an industry professional. If you provide a sound idea, we’ll provide the path to its practical execution.
Come look around the website, sign up for the forum, and get involved in the future Supernatural.
The WatchSupernatural.org campaign's origins are with the LiveJournal community, promote_spn. Promote-spn was created by 'mkitty03' in mid-January 2007, the precipitation of a wave of fan concern that rose after it was revealed in an interview that Eric Kripke believed Supernatural had "a 50-50 chance of being renewed for a third season".
The initial drive of the promote-spn was then, at that point, fueled by a degree of anxiousness from the fans. Frustrated by the seeming lack of effective advertising on the part of The CW, the competitive timeslot and the comparatively low ratings, through promote_spn Supernatural fans began to take it upon themselves to carry out some "promotion" of the show in order to boost its media coverage and subsequently, its ratings, ensuring it a third season.
The support for promote-spn was huge and instantaneous (as of April 2007, there are almost 700 LiveJournal users watching the community), and the enthusiasm for the cause likewise. The primary activities the participants at promote_spn were recording their support on online entertainment polls and emailing or mailing their letters of support to various magazines and columnists.
This latter activity cause a degree of controversy amongst the Supernatural fan community, mainly because of the "blitzing" form that this correspondence took. Email campaigns were talked of in terms of "attacks", wherein fans would aggressively concentrate their emails to one particular columnist within a particular timeframe. This tactic backfired when columnist Matt Roush objected to the veritable "spam" from Supernatural fans - which were sent forth on an erroneous tip-off.
At around the same time (late February) that other fans with professional backgrounds in marketing and campaigning (amongst other things) began to step forward and offer suggestions for making the fan campaign a more successful one. A website for the campaign, SaveSupernatural.org, was launched in mind of attracting a Supernatural fans from online spaces broader than LiveJournal's scope, and as a way to offer more effective tips to campaigning for Supernatural's success. Wary of the controversy with staging "attacks" on the media, SaveSupernatural.org presented a mission that focused on more respected, effective routes of promotion than fan "blitzing".
Following the launch of SaveSupernatural.org, even more fans with backgrounds in fan campaigning and marketing stepped forward to support and develop the campaign, and at the end of March 2007 it was re-launched as WatchSupernatural.org, stating its mission that:
- At WatchSupernatural.org, we’re looking towards the future, and laying the groundwork to support our show’s long term success. Fan campaigns have a long history of desperation, arising as noisy, last ditch efforts among bands of panicked fans. What Supernatural needs now isn’t saving, but exposure, promotion, and a positive media profile to generate the ratings a show of its quality deserves.
- Staffed with dedicated veterans of successful fan campaigns and PR experience, WatchSupernatural.org is focused on proactive fan activities dedicated to both reaching new viewers and cultivating a positive image of Supernatural and its fans in the press.
Taking into account the sudden wave of tie-ins and other production gossip, the anxiety around whether Supernatural was to be renewed for a third season was lessened. At the time of writing, a coordinated team of fans are developing features of the campaign to promote and celebrate Supernatural, including competitions and charity fundraising.