Viewer engagement with SAT-7 ACADEMY doubled in March, as Middle Eastern children and parents accessed the education and support offered by the brand in large numbers. As lockdowns continue, there has been a particularly strong, emotive response to the children’s rights campaign produced by the gameshow Puzzle.

On Facebook, SAT-7 ACADEMY’s main line of communication with viewers, the number of people viewing posts doubled in the month of March, reaching almost 1.5 million. Comments from viewers also spiked, with many expressing their appreciation for the social development brand and its programs.

“SAT-7 ACADEMY makes me feel safe, and I feel like I’m at home because it has Arabic characteristics,” says viewer Dalia* from Egypt. “I really love Puzzle and I was moved by the stories of the children, especially when they state that they have the right to learn, to play, and to live! Your academic lessons are useful, too, and I feel safe when my daughter is watching.”

The song “Early Marriage” was written and acted by children from Puzzle

Dalia’s is among many strong responses to Puzzle and its campaign of music videos and “public service announcement” (PSA) clips on topics including child marriage and protection from violence. The positive impact, explains Brand Manager Juliana Sfeir, began with the children who took part in the show and then spread to viewers. “We received many comments from children telling us that they had not known their basic rights, such as the right to play. The video clips also had a huge influence on parents. They understood the issues when they saw situations that reflect their reality,” she says. One viewer who watched the “Early Marriage” music video wrote to SAT-7 ACADEMY to share that the song represented what she went through when she was forced to marry as a child.

SAT-7 ACADEMY’s Audience Relations team keeps viewers engaged with educational Facebook challenges

Another program, the live parenting counselling show The Coach, received 1,700 responses in March alone. “This is because The Coach has dealt with the issue we are all going through: the coronavirus, providing precaution and prevention tips,” explains Sfeir. As SAT-7 ACADEMY is already a trusted source of information across the region, the health and parenting advice offered on The Coach, and new short programs Expert Advice and Dr Bee, is a lifeline for viewers from Algeria, Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen, and elsewhere.

The increase in viewer engagement comes as SAT-7 ACADEMY has launched a new YouTube package of educational resources for children who are out of school. In addition, the primary education show My School is using Facebook Live while recording of its next series is on hold. The program’s Arabic, maths, science, English, and French teachers are all streaming lessons live, often from their own homes, allowing thousands of viewers to comment in real time with questions and their answers to prompts.

Many viewers also share their thanks. “I regularly watch My School’s English lessons and have improved in reading,” says Abdo* from Algeria. “I would like to send a special greeting to the English teacher and to all the teachers. We love you so much.”

*Names have been changed for security reasons.

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