BET brings the red carpet treatment to millions of viewers
Each awards season, BET produces live events that are broadcast to 91 million households. Candice Grevious keeps BET on track behind the scenes.
Grievous was hired as an intern fresh out of college and now serves as BET’s Digital Production Manager. She oversees production for BET’s largest tentpole award shows from The BET Awards to specials on how Barack Obama’s presidency shaped Black lives. This means producing a variety of content from video shorts, photo galleries, and interactive features that extend the reach of BET’s programming, engaging audiences around the world.
For each awards special, she collaborates with various teams (design, product, brand creative, ad sales, and integrated marketing) to produce the content and host it on a microsite — everything from backstage videos to red carpet interviews, interactive features, voting, and more. Every team has its own distinct workflow using various tools like Google Sheets, Docs, Basecamp, and Wufoo to name a few. Candice sought to consolidate the workflows and adopted Airtable as a means of getting everyone on the same page, both figuratively and literally.
“Our content plan went from a document that was only helpful to me to a resource that is used by everyone on the team."
Not long after Grevious joined the team it suddenly shrunk leaving her with more on her plate than anticipated. “I went from being an intern to being an interactive producer relatively quickly. Shortly after joining the team, our crew shrunk from three people to two and I don’t think I was completely prepared for the transition. It now fell on my shoulders to interact with key stakeholders to complete large campaigns or meet tough deadlines that would coincide with huge company-wide announcements,” Grevious said.
So she got organized. Starting with consolidating the workflow.
“Airtable has been a huge help. I took it upon myself to find a way to organize both my digital content plan, as well as information managed by other teams,” Grievous explains. “ I’ve never been so excited about content management. And to know that Airtable could easily be connected to some of my other applications was more than I could ask for.”
One of the major issues they were experiencing with their previous setup was that stakeholders weren’t receiving necessary notifications. “A lot of critical conversations were lost or missed, or there would be too many threads to keep track of,” Grevious said.
“Once we all got onboard with Airtable, it completely changed the game for managing our projects and campaigns.” We now receive notifications when anything is updated. It not only made things easier, but it helped my peace of mind for sure."
During pre-production Grevious builds out a full grid on everything they plan to do, from sponsorships to digital originals. Her team collaborates with the video creation team to execute videos and shoot in the field with talent, then return to the office to write up articles and produce photo galleries and edit videos that they need to publish.
Airtable’s lookup fields allowed BET to connect its sponsorship grid with the content plan. So instead of sending a spreadsheet back and forth, the brand solutions, ad ops, and content team can now synchronously track their various campaigns and be notified of any updates.
“I like having content link from table to table so that whatever I write in one table automatically gets updated in another. It makes my life 100 percent easier. When you organize the content plan in Google Sheets, you run the risk of users being able to make changes without you knowing, but with Airtable, the creator has more control. It was able to relieve myself of what I like to call “fake stress,” she said.
Personal and team views were essential when collaborating with so many members–they helped distill the most important information to various roles and teams. Slack integrations allow for each team to be alerted when projects progress to their wheelhouse.
Grievous says she always knew she was meant to be in the entertainment industry. So when she got this shot she made the most of it. Getting organized with Airtable made her excited about content management, easily connecting her to other applications, she says it has eased her peace of mind.
“Work has taught me so much about resilience, compromise, thinking ahead, and the value of input, so I make it my duty to apply all my nuggets of knowledge to my day-to-day communications. I think I can take those skills with me to my next job, whatever that ends up being. I’m collecting nuggets of wisdom all the time to become a better professional,” Grevious said.