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On Friday, MTV sent out a vague message, asking “Who is the benefactor?” across all social accounts, eventually leading fans to the nondescript website WhoIstheBenefactor.com featuring a keyboard and blank lines. The task was relatively simple — MTV didn’t provide any directions or details, instead banking on Teen Wolf fans to start a conversation among themselves about the mystery. Participants were to compile 16 keywords, strategically placed across the Internet (clue destinations included MTV.com, Tumblr posts dating back three years, cryptic castmember tweets and a 40-second promo), and submit them in the correct order to gain first access to the full season-four trailer. One of the most difficult clues, which were all vetted by Teen Wolf executive producer Jeff Davis, was for the number “2436,” derived from a phone number off a castmember selfie.
By Saturday, about 24 hours after MTV began the social stunt, fans had unlocked what the network claims is its most complicated initiative yet. By Sunday morning, the scavenger hunt — which took MTV five weeks to plan and build — drew 350,000 page views to the WhoIstheBenefactor.com website, with 155,000 attempted unlocks, only 23,000 of which were ultimately successful.
The immediate response to the latest social push is a testament to Teen Wolf’s strong online presence, something the network hopes to continue targeting. MTV is no stranger to high-concept social campaigns, having rolled out such previous stunts as season-three’s GIF puzzle, which was unlocked more than 77,000 times in a six-hour window and drew 139,000 visitors to the TeenWolfTrailer.com site this past winter. And over the weekend, ripped versions of the season-four trailer made its way to YouTube. Luckily for fans, The Hollywood Reporter has the first look at the official 90-second trailer below.
Teen Wolf premieres June 23 at 10 p.m. on MTV.
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