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Billboard is bringing a music documentary series to Snapchat

  • Billboard is producing Snap's first music series "Artist Pass." The show features artists like Luke Bryan and Demi Lovato preparing for performances.
  • Billboard chose Snapchat to host the show because it felt it was the "premier platform for younger millennials."
  • Snapchat reaches nine times more 18- to 34-year-olds in the U.S. than the average top 15 TV networks on any given day, according to Nielsen.
Luke Bryan performs during Faster Horses Festival at Michigan International Speedway on July 23, 2017 in Brooklyn, Michigan.
Erika Goldring | WireImage | Getty Images
Luke Bryan performs during Faster Horses Festival at Michigan International Speedway on July 23, 2017 in Brooklyn, Michigan.

Billboard is bringing a music documentary series to Snapchat.

"Artist Pass" is Snapchat's first original music programming, featuring a behind-the-scenes look at artists as they prepare for performances. The episodes, which are sponsored by Honda and are four to five minutes in length, will air biweekly starting Sunday and be available on Discover for 48 hours. Musicians Luke Bryan, Demi Lovato and Rae Sremmurd will be featured on the show, with more musicians to be announced.

"Millennials are practically native to the mobile experience," John Amato, president of Billboard & The Hollywood Reporter Media Group, told CNBC. "It's how they've learned to consume content including video and they want that information and entertainment quickly and in an organic tone."

Snapchat, which is owned by Snap, reaches nine times more 18- to 34-year-olds in the U.S. than the average top 15 TV networks on any given day, according to Nielsen. Almost 9 out of 10 of Snapchat's daily active users in that age group do not watch any of those 15 networks, per Nielsen.

And about three-quarters of Snap's Shows viewers skew young around 13- to 24-years-old, Snapchat says.

An image from the upcoming Luke Bryan episode of "Artist Pass." Courtesy of Billboard.

Snapchat's first music-focused show comes as competitor Facebook is expected to announce its own slate of original programming. Snapchat's foray into original programming has already proved fruitful, with episodes of E!'s entertainment news show "The Rundown" averaging 7 million viewers per episode, three times higher than when it launched in September per the company.

Snapchat has also featured music before through its Our Story coverage, which features snaps from a specific location. The first Our Story was at music festival EDC in Las Vegas, while others have featured Coachella, the Grammy Awards, Lollapalooza and the Glastonbury Festival. It's also created music-themed lenses or visual effects filters for snaps for artists Sia, Sage the Gemini, Ed Sheeran, Daft Punk and Lana del Rey. Special geofilters or digitally fenced areas that are allowed access to a special photo filter, have been available for Katy Perry, Frank Ocean and The Weeknd concerts, among others.

"We believe that Snapchat is the premier platform for younger millennials and we want to continue to find new opportunities to reach that audience," Amato said regarding the choice of Snapchat over its competitors. "Snapchat's Discover is a curated and selective environment. With a sea of options that exist across these new platforms, including social media, we believe that premium content benefits from curation. We couldn't have a better partner than Snapchat for this."

Although the episodes aren't as long as traditional TV shows, let alone feature-length documentaries, Amato feels there is enough to keep music fans satisfied.

"I wouldn't necessarily refer to this as 'short form' as much as I would refer to it as 'segments,'" he said. "I believe that audiences are gravitating towards 'segments' of entertainment content. If you think about it, even major television shows could be viewed in short segments just up to six minutes long. Providing this sort of option to viewers is a winning strategy."

Disclosure: CNBC and E!'s parent company NBCUniversal is an investor in Snap.