Harley Davidson rides into primetime on Discovery

A digital series celebrating the brand's anniversary in Canada has been turned into an hour-long documentary.
harley davidson CommonGround

A digital series celebrating Harley Davidson’s 100th anniversary in Canada is getting the primetime treatment.

The one-hour documentary Common Ground will have its broadcast debut on Discovery Channel on Sept. 16. The doc is an evolution of the 12-part digital anniversary series of the same name created by Harley Davidson’s media agency Team Ignite and creative shop Zulu Alpha Kilo earlier this year.

Billed as “part foreign exchange, part road trip,” it paired Harley Davidson riders from Canada with international motorcycle fans. Since going live in June, the English and French digital series has collected more than 9.1 million views online and earned more than 38 million media impressions.

“Early on, it was getting such a great response from the rider community, so we wanted to make it into something bigger,” said Mike Sutton, president, Zulu Alpha Kilo. “And that’s when we got interest from Bell Media and Discovery.”

Sutton said the team simply took all of the footage it had from the digital shorts to turn it into a one-hour primetime series.

Discovery Channel was a fit because the channel had already run Harley and the Davidsons, a mini-series about the history of Harley Davidson and its founders, in 2016.

This Saturday, Discovery Canada will air Harley and the Davidsons ahead of the primetime debut of Common Ground. Promotions for the documentary have been running on Bell Media’s channels for the past week-and-a-half, said Sutton.

The doc is coproduced by Zulu’s content studio, zulubot, in collaboration with New York’s Artifact Nonfiction, will debut on Bell Media’s Discovery Channel