Posts Tagged ‘network’

NBCUniversal Will Combine Its Cable, NBC and Telemundo Upfront Presentations

March 30, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

The broadcast upfront week just got a lot more interesting—and a little bit shorter. NBCUniversal has decided to merge its NBC, Telemundo and NBCU cable entertainment upfronts into a single NBCU presentation, which will be held on Monday, May 16 at New York's Radio City Music Hall. The news was first reported by The Hollywood Reporter . Traditionally, NBC has had the Monday Radio City upfront to itself, with Telemundo following on Tuesday evening, and NBCU cable wrapping upfront week with a Thursday afternoon event at the Javits Center. Now, Linda Yaccarino, chairman, advertising sales and client partnerships for NBCUniversal, will make just one upfront pitch to advertisers and buyers that week instead of three separate ones. "As a media company, we have an unparalleled array of networks and digital platforms that reach the most audiences across all dayparts. Our event will reflect the way we go to market as a unified portfolio which makes it easier for our clients to do business with us all together," said Yaccarino said in a statement. "There isn't going to be an upfront event as big and bold as this one. Through our content, we have an unrivaled ability to create an emotional connection like no one else. There's only one place to go for scale and meaningful consumer engagement." In many ways, it's a move that makes sense for NBCU, which has been transacting all of its advertising under a single, companywide portfolio since 2013. Last year's upfront brought in $6 billion across the portfolio. Last November, Yaccarino continued streamlining NBCU ad sales by merging her linear and digital ad sales teams . "Because of the scale of our company, we needed to be more accessible in a bigger, faster way to our clients," who had been requesting a more streamlined method of working with the company, she told Adweek at the time. This will also mark the end of NBCU's combined cable upfront, which the network had added to broadcast upfront week in 2014. Previously, it held individual upfronts for its cable networks like Bravo, USA and Oxygen. Advertisers and buyers will certainly appreciate having two fewer upfronts to attend during that overstuffed week, especially because so many of them have run out of steam by the time they arrive at NBCU's cable presentation on Thursday afternoon. But that Monday upfront—which will now cover Bravo, CNBC, E!, Esquire Network, Golf Channel, MSNBC, NBC Entertainment, NBC News, NBC Sports Network, NBC Universo, Oxygen, Sprout, Syfy, Telemundo and USA—could easily turn into a marathon, as each of those broadcast and cable networks will get their due. Plus, Yaccarino will also need to highlight her team's new initiatives, including selling TV advertising programmatically for the first time this fall . The new format also puts NBC at a disadvantage compared to its fellow broadcast networks, which won't need to share the spotlight as much, if at all, during their respective upfronts later that week. It's also unlikely that the combined upfront will allow for spectacles like NBC Entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt's duet with Dolly Parton , which was a memorable, surreal highlight of last year's NBC presentation.

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Scripps Is Planning a 6-Network Halloween Crossover Special

March 29, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Marvel and DC aren't the only media companies engineering major crossover events to showcase their biggest properties. Scripps Networks Interactive—home to HGTV, Food Network, Travel Channel, DIY Network, Cooking Channel and Great American Country—is planning a Halloween special featuring talent from many of its channels to air on all six networks. The company discussed cross-network and cross-platform opportunities for advertisers during a media briefing before today's upfront presentation, which will be held at New York's Alice Tully Hall. It's the third stop on Scripps' seven-city upfront tour, which kicked off March 15 in Atlanta and also includes stops in Minneapolis, Chicago, Detroit, Boston and L.A. Jon Steinlauf, president of national ad sales and marketing, touted Scripps' robust portfolio and said its top three channels are growing in ratings, revenue and share. "We're delivering our advertisers' schedules with a growing stable of hit shows that families can watch together," Steinlauf said. And almost all of those shows are being watched live: 97 percent of Scripps' C3 audience watches either live or later that same day, making Scripps the No. 1 network group in the category. Scripps' ratings growth is led by HGTV, which had its highest rated year in 2015 and as of February is the No.

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Viceland Launches VR Partnership With Samsung and Downplays Weak Early TV Ratings Data

March 28, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

As it nears its one-month anniversary, Viceland is expanding its stable of advertising partners by striking a new virtual reality deal with Samsung. But the network is also downplaying early ratings data that indicates soft initial audience interest in the cable network that replaced H2. Viceland and Samsung unveiled a major partnership today to create new virtual reality content for both companies' platforms. The companies are enlisting big names in film, music and gaming to create VR projects for Samsung Milk VR, Samsung's virtual reality content service which is exclusive to the SamsungGear VR headset. The first one will focus on VR pioneer Chris Milk (founder and CEO of Vrse) and highlight his work in the VR space. The partnership launches with this two-minute spot, which will air tonight on Viceland. As part of the partnership, Viceland and Samsung will co-produce a documentary series about the VR creators as they work on these projects. They will premiere as native ads on Viceland prime-time programming, while 30-second versions of each documentary will run during Viceland commercial breaks. "We want to pioneer storytelling 'beyond the frame' and to connect with audiences in completely new, and emotional, ways," said Eddy Moretti, Vice's chief creative officer and Viceland's co-president, in a statement about the new efforts. The new partnership is part of Viceland's efforts to shake up TV advertising by reducing ad load and running more native ads . Viceland hopes to have native ads—which are created by Vice Media to look more like editorial content—represent half its ad inventory within the year. "Vice has always been more successful when it's done native advertising and interesting custom partnerships with brands, and then you extend that idea to this TV network also," said Guy Slattery, general manager for Viceland, told Adweek earlier this month. Early ratings woes? The announcement comes three days after an International Business Times report said ratings had plummeted since Viceland replaced H2 on Feb. 29. According to the story, which cited data from Rentrak, Viceland's average daily viewership over its first three weeks (55,000) is 77 percent lower than H2's numbers during its final three weeks (241,000). A Viceland spokesman said that Rentrak data was "inaccurate," noting that it doesn't focus on the 18-34 demo that Viceland is targeting, which is much younger than the 25-54 demo that had tuned in for H2.

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How FX Bids for New Series Without the Big Budget of Netflix

March 22, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

As streaming services like Netflix, Amazon and Hulu snap up original series away from linear networks, as well as lure creators with big paydays and promises of creative autonomy, their competitors have had to alter their approaches to bidding for new projects. One of those is FX, which lost out on the bidding for Aziz Ansari's comedy Master of None and the upcoming drama The Crown. Both of those shows went to Netflix after the streaming service "overwhelmed us with shock and awe levels of money and commitment," FX CEO John Landgraf told reporters in January . He also used a "Moneyball" analogy when comparing FX to Netflix, explaining, "Basically, we're competing against payrolls, if you will, a la the Oakland A's and New York Yankees, that are three or four times ours." Because he can't match Netflix dollar for dollar, Landgraf has shifted the focus of his pitches, highlighting other attributes of the network when bidding for shows. Landgraf highlights his marketing team, which has been named PromaxBDA's In-House Marketing Team of the Year for five consecutive years. "I think the talent appreciates that," he told Adweek. Landgraf also emphasizes the personal touch and attention he can give FX's shows versus Netflix, which now has 100 series in the pipeline—55 for adults, 45 for children. "Our network is more of a bespoke organization than a factory. We're at about 18 shows, and that's the most that I can personally pay attention to," said Landgraf. While he could maybe do as many as 20, "I'm at the max in terms of being able to read scripts, watch rough cuts, have a thoughtful input and dialogue." And that's important, even when the network doesn't have much creative feedback in terms of notes for producers. Landgraf said that his deal with Louis CK for Louie specified that the network wasn't able to give him notes.

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A Year After Rebranding as Pop, the Old TV Guide Network Has Added Almost 100 New Advertisers

March 21, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

A year after rising from the ashes of the TV Guide Network, Pop is still making noise with viewers and advertisers—and the network is entering this year's upfront with a lot of confidence for a network that just turned 1. As Michael DuPont, evp of ad sales, and his team hold upfront meetings—this year's theme is "Shift to Pop"—with clients, agencies and media planners around the country, Pop has announced a new slate of shows that represent 400 hours of original programming. TV Guide Network relaunched as Pop in January 2015 , with the new network targeting "modern grown-ups" who are pop culture enthusiasts. While last year's upfront, which took place shortly after the rebrand, featured "a lot of showmanship," said Pop president Brad Schwartz, this year, "There's no more selling any hype. We get to go into this upfront confident that what we built is working." While ratings have been down across the industry, Pop—and TVGN before it—has experienced nine consecutive quarters of year-over-year growth. In Q4 of 2015, its "core sales demo" of women 25-54 was up 30 percent in total day viewers and 27 percent in prime time versus the previous year. In the 18-49 demo during the same quarter, Pop was up 27 percent in total day and 15 percent in prime time. Its main competitors, including Lifetime, Oxygen and Bravo, were down or flat in those demos during that same timeframe, said Schwartz

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ABC and Warner Bros.’ New Deal Will Make Binge Watching Easier

March 17, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Networks and studios have been battling for years over stacking rights—the ability to offer in-season episodes via on demand or network streaming—but a new agreement from ABC and Warner Bros. Television Group signals those conflicts could be coming to an end. ABC Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television Group struck a stacking rights deal covering any series produce by Warner Bros. that debuts on ABC in the 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons. The agreement enables ABC to offer all episodes of its Warner Bros. series launched during the next two seasons on its VOD platforms like and Hulu, as well as VOD on MVPD partners like cable and satellite. In doing so, viewers will be able to to binge the entire current season of the show, instead of being restricted to only the last five episodes, as is currently the case for most series. Warner Bros. will retain end-of-season SVOD rights, early syndication rights, early DVD rights and day-after electronic sell-through rights to companies like iTunes. "This is a real win for network television viewers," said Jana Winograde, evp of business operations for ABC Entertainment, in a statement

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Why USA Network’s Mr. Robot Put a 100-Foot Ferris Wheel in Downtown Austin [Video]

March 14, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

USA Network's critical darling, Mr. Robot, created major buzz at last year's South by Southwest, where it premiered the show and won the festival's audience award. So it only makes sense that the network would bring the series back to Austin to get fans excited for the upcoming second season —and to do so on a grand scale. That's why, if you're at SXSW Interactive, you've probably seen a 100-foot Ferris wheel designed to look like Coney Island's famed Wonder Wheel. The four-day activation, which ends today, recreates key moments and sets from the show, like the F Society hacker den on Coney Island, to immerse fans in the Mr. Robot world.

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The CW Renews All 11 Series It Currently Airs for Next Season

March 11, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

The CW had been the only broadcast network to not renew any of its shows for next season, but the network has corrected that oversight in a huge way on Friday, by issuing early pickups for literally every series it currently airs. That includes freshman series Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, which is averaging just a 0.3 rating in adults 18-49, but is a critical favorite, as Rachel Bloom won a Golden Globe in January for best actress in a musical or comedy series. Midseason hit DC's Legends of Tomorrow, a spinoff of The Flash and Arrow, was also renewed, along with these nine returning series: The Flash (the network's most-watched show ever, which averages a 2.3 live-plus-7 rating in 18-49), Jane the Virgin, iZombie, Arrow, Supernatural, The 100, The Vampire Diaries, The Originals and Reign (which is the only show renewed today that is not currently airing on the network). "The CW has become home to some of the most critically-acclaimed shows on broadcast television, with a wide array of fantastic scripted series across the week, ranging from musical comedy, to superhero action, to gritty sci-fi dramas," said Mark Pedowitz, president of The CW, in a statement. "As we continue to further our strategy of more year-round original programming, picking up these 11 series for the 2016-2017 season puts us in a great position of having proven, high-quality shows to launch in the fall as well as midseason and summer of 2017." That leaves just one The CW series with its fate undecided heading into May's upfronts: new drama Containment, which doesn't premiere on the network until April 19. The renewals come as The CW has increased its male viewers to 48 percent of its audience, thanks to shows like The Flash, Arrrow and The 100. In 2011, men made up just 30 percent of the audience. Pedowitz's all-at-once renewals echo a similar move he made in January 2015, when he picked up his entire fall 2014 lineup in a show of strength. While The CW premiered one new show last fall, "we'll probably do two" in fall 2016, Pedowitz told Adweek earlier this year. "That doesn't mean that the two that aren't on the schedule, won't be on the schedule [at all]. It's just, we have really good shows now!" Series that aren't on the fall schedule will return either in midseason or summer 2017. Last week, ABC issued early renewals to 15 series: America's Funniest Home Videos, The Bachelor, Black-ish, Dancing with the Stars, Fresh Off the Boat, The Goldbergs, Grey's Anatomy, How to Get Away With Murder, Marvel's Agents of SHIELD, The Middle, Modern Family, Once Upon a Time, Scandal, Shark Tank and Quantico. But the network still left many shows hanging, including American Crime, Nashville, Dr. Ken and Marvel's Agent Carter. NBC has steadily renewing shows throughout the season, while Fox and CBS have made a few key renewals, but have yet to weigh in on several of their shows.

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After Spoofing SI’s Swimsuit Issue, FX’s Archer Wants You To Turn Off Your Cell Phones in Theaters

March 10, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

FX has been making a lot of noise with its marketing campaign for Archer's upcoming Season 7, which has already spoofed the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue and recreated Magnum P.I.'s opening credits. But now, the network's marketing team is quieting things down for the next phase of its Archer campaign: a new PSA urging movie theaters to silence their cell phones. The spot, which will begin airing Friday in Spotlight Cinema Networks' 200 arthouse venues nationwide, features Archer and Lana, the stars of FX's hit animated comedy. It will run for three weeks, until Thursday, March 31, the day of Archer's Season 7 premiere. This is the third time that Archer's production team, Floyd County Productions, has created a "turn off your cell phone" PSA for Spotlight. "We've done different sequences each year. We change it up and have a whole new setting," said Lance Reiss, svp of marketing for FX. The previous spots were both gold winners in the PromaxBDA Awards' "Promos at the Movies" category, in 2015 and 2013. Last month, the network partnered with Sports Illustrated to feature faux swimsuit shots of its female characters in the swimsuit issue and "The Girls of Archer" branded content online. Because Archer is animated, most of the marketing requires close collaboration between Reiss' team and the show's executive producers, Adam Reed and Matt Thompson, who need to incorporate any marketing-related animation into the show's production schedule. "Yes, they are extremely busy making a show, but the great thing is I think they're marketers at heart too, because they really respond when we come to them," said Reiss. For example, Reed and Thompson came up with one of the first components of this year's campaign: the shot-for-shot remake of Magnum P.I.'s opening credits, featuring the Archer cast, which FX posted in early February to tease season 7, which finds the former spies moving to L.A. to work as private investigators. "So that's part of a collaboration of, they have an idea, can we make it part of our marketing campaign, or we have an idea for our marketing campaign, can they help us out with it? That's where it's really become such a dynamic collaboration between the network and the animation studio," said Reiss. "We help motivate each other, and in the end, I think it benefits the show and keeps the show fresh." And there's more to come, said Reiss. "We capitalized on the SI swimsuit issue, but there are other key themes and events that are going on in the marketplace—political buzz, spring break—so we decided to take our Archer-esque shot at those as well," he said. To capitalize on the country's fascination/revulsion with Donald Trump's Presidential campaign, FX is partnering with Uproxx on a feature—"Who Said It Best: Trump or Archer?"—which will run next week. "It's very timely, and it's perfect in tone with the show, as well as capitalizing on what's happening around us in society," said Reiss, who previously worked with Uproxx last year on branded content featuring "hacked" naked photos from the phone of Archer character Pam Poovey . The network has partnered with the website Total Frat Move to feature a photo submission contest centered around spring break, and Pam Poovey's 10 tips for spring break

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FX and Sports Illustrated Feature ‘The Girls of Archer,’ Swimsuit Issue-Style

February 22, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

If this year's Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue feels a little more animated than usual, it's likely because of the characters from FX's Archer. As part of the marketing campaign for the hit animated comedy's upcoming seventh season, the network partnered with Sports Illustrated to feature faux swimsuit shots of its female characters in both the print issue and online. Last week's Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue included an ad featuring Pam Poovey, one of the characters from Archer. The prominently displayed photography and swimsuit credits—key components of swimsuit issue art—mention two of the show's male characters, Sterling Archer and Ray Gillette. The ad was one of several surprising elements in this year's swimsuit issue, which featured three separate covers and a Snickers back-cover ad with an epic Photoshop fail . Starting today, an expanded look at "The Girls of Archer" is available as branded content on's Swim Daily , part of its swimsuit section. The package includes swimsuit shots of the show's three female lead characters—Pam (voiced by Amber Nash), Cheryl Tunt (Judy Greer) and Lana Kane (Aisha Tyler)—and more information about the tie-in between SI and Archer, which has its Season 7 premiere on March 31. Images of Pam and Lana also appear elsewhere on the Sports Illustrated site to drive traffic to the branded content. "Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue is a cultural icon, and we were thinking of fun ways we could take part," said Lance Reiss, svp of marketing for FX

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