Eager to harness some of the social-media activity around shows "True Blood" and "Game of Thrones," HBO is launching a site to generate conversation and interaction. HBO Connect is debuting with a section prompting hungry "True Blood" fans to link up in advance of the show's return in late June.
The vampire show's TBwithdrawal.com microsite allows easier connections via Twitter hashtags, one of which is #waitingsucks, and other functions.
With conversation and connections flying all over the Web about its series, HBO is hoping to toss in some marketing messages. One of the goals is to offer a "second screen" experience, where viewers can use the site while watching. Users can log in via their Facebook and Twitter accounts and use capabilities such as "Pulse," which provides easy real-time access to popular HBO-related discussion topics and content.
There is also "Feed," which grabs all social-media content about a series, allowing interaction with Twitter feeds and each other.
"Conversations" offers interaction with HBO talent in front of and behind the camera through real-time Q&As. Also, during show replays, actors, writers and directors will offer real-time Twitter commentaries on the making of the program.
HBO has compiled a schedule of conversations with talent such as "Treme" star Wendell Pierce, Janina Gavankar of "True Blood" and Alexandra Pelosi, the maker of documentary "Citizen U.SA."