Sports TV keeps ‘Dragon’ off using same old promo tricks –

Bob Costas hated the kite thing as much as you did.

During a recent appearance on ESPN’s Radio Cleveland affiliate, the station tore about Warner Bros. Discovery’s misguided cross-promotional stunt, in which a seedy CGI dragon flapped in the air over Yankee Stadium ahead of Game 1 of the ALDS. Looking to the world like something that went horribly wrong during a giant’s bris, the digitized beast served as the centerpiece of a promo read for HBO game of Thrones Precursor.

“From a production point of view, there’s a lot more stuff,” Costas told WKNR listeners the day after clearing out the drill in corporate synergies. “The commercial imperatives are such that there are more drop-ins during games.” Costas went on to say that he’s been trying to deaden the sounds of his rolling eyeballs (“how can I distance myself from this without totally wrecking it?”) before noting that the ad’s overreach is one of many concessions the a sports reporter must make cross-platform universe.

Cornball theatrics aside, internal promotions are as familiar a part of the sports TV experience as halftime show banter and insurance ads. Live broadcasts generate the largest audiences and are therefore the most stable platforms for pumping up a network’s primetime program schedule. According to Nielsen, around 25.4 million people watched the in-house promos for The equalizer and So help me Todd which aired during CBS’ Oct. 16 coverage of the Bills Chiefs game. A further 26.4 million viewers were exposed to the teasers for last month monarch which aired during Fox’s national NFL window (83% Packers-Bucs).

While it’s only natural for broadcasters to use their biggest and loudest megaphones to make noise for all other broadcasts, many of television’s internal promotional efforts are utterly ineffective. “A smart, fun promo can help convince a lot of people to try a smart, fun show,” said one TV marketing veteran. “Now where we run into difficulties is that most shows just aren’t very good. The promos suck too, so everything evens out to zero.”

It was a joke, but not the kind that TV people find terribly funny. “We have worked according to the same rules for the last 50 years,” said the marketing director. “‘Use the big audience to build up the smaller audience another night.’ “Let the actress sing the anthem of this thing.” “Throw out anyone who is 55 or older.” These are the best ideas we have. They don’t really work.”

There’s ample evidence that promos aren’t an effective way of getting sports fans to explore other elements of a network’s schedule, no matter how many happen to snag a particular slot. According to data, no preseason trailer has garnered more attention than the new Fox drama monarch, which generated 807.1 million impressions in the first two weeks of September. The Monday night musical, which was heavily promoted in Fox’s early NFL coverage and launched on a special post-football window on September 11, is the third-lowest-performing program on network television, averaging fewer than 270,000 adults between the ages of 18 and 49 per Consequence.

Among the other network shows that have failed to convert promo exposure into actual viewers are ABCs Alaska Dailywhich averaged fewer than 380,000 adults 18-49 after a two-week, football-heavy foray that racked up 814.7 million impressions, and NBC’s recurring series La Breawhich attracted 535,000 Dollar Demo members after a half-month promo run that garnered 928.7 million views.

While marketers spend nearly $500 million on Super Bowl ads each year, the Big Game’s vaunted ability to sell Cheetos and lager doesn’t seem to translate into building a prime-time audience later in the week. During the 2021 Super Bowl, CBS aired several spots Claricea serialized adaptation of the silence of the Lambs IP bowing four nights after the Bucs humiliated the Chiefs. By the 99.7 million people who saw it Clarice Teaser, only 4 million tuned in for the premiere. The show was quietly canceled after its 13-episode run.

Even that coveted Super Bowl lead-out spot rarely boosts ratings, as broadcast archives are crammed with shows that were shelved again after their moment in the February sun. For every hour friends Special, which averages 52.9 million viewers and then continues to burn the ratings charts, saw multiple flops; Among the lead-outs that hit the wall shortly after Super Sunday was James Brolin’s long-forgotten vehicle Extremethe curiosity of randy quaid Davis Rules and MacGruder and Loud, you have to go to google. That all three of those worthless shows aired on ABC is a coincidence, although one that hints at a new wrinkle that could help improve advertising efficiency.

Let’s assume a best-case scenario where the shows a network needs to promote are of significantly higher quality than what Aaron Spelling thought he would work for him MacGruder and Loud. While primetime audience fragmentation is largely responsible for broadcast television’s lackluster deliveries, demographic factors are also at work, undermining the efforts of the network’s advertising units. For example, women now make up approximately 36% of NFL national television broadcasts, but many of ABC’s tentpole series serve audiences that are 75% female. There is a disconnect between the “borrowed” NFL audience and the core viewers who make up the bulk of the ABC user base; as such, most who watch the in-house promos aired along the way Monday night soccer probably won’t sniff out the weekday drama, comedy, and competitive shows.

CBS had a better success rate because it arguably understands its brand better than any other television network. Knowing that the square-pin, round-hole approach doesn’t really pay off when midweek viewership surges, CBS used Super Bowl LV less than bludgeons –We will continue to pound on your defense with this “Young Sheldon” Business to the cracking– and rather as a gentle push. The Tiffany Network mixed single show promos with a more general branding push designed to highlight its diverse sports, entertainment and news offerings. Instead of blasting a 30-second hook for every show it airs, CBS instead focused on articulating its primetime brand while laying out its vision for the over-the-top platform Paramount+.

The traditional show promos were a success or failure, as evidenced by the subsequent performance of Clarice. But the other key show CBS wanted to highlight during the Super Bowl managed to make the most of its presence; The equalizer, starring Queen Latifah, not only retained nearly half of its premiere audience (20.4 million), but also earned bragging rights as the network’s third-highest rated drama of 2020-21. Since his big Sunday goodbye The equalizer in its third season is now considered the highest rated scripted series on television.

So the worked. But what about the WBD dragon stunt? Costas wasn’t a fan, and when tasked with interacting with the fake dragon, MLB Network/Turner Sports reporter Lauren Shehadi looked like she was mentally compiling an alphabetical list of places she’d rather be right now. Since Nielsen hasn’t released its latest streaming numbers, it’s impossible to tell if the clunky hunk managed to convert any baseball fans into HBO viewers, but last but not least, Amazon counts Lord of the rings Series had a slight advantage over house of the dragon on the Swords and Spells front.

At least one TV marketing expert believes that virtual advertising has probably been as ineffective as any other media plan that involves the indiscriminate cramming of two completely unrelated programming elements. “Except for the guy who writes the books [noted Mets fan George R. R. Martin], there can’t be too many viewers dividing their time between baseball and genre stuff, even if they’re analytics geeks,” the manager said. “Twitter isn’t ‘real,’ but the reaction there was explosively negative — a lot of people were like, ‘Oh, the hell with that.'”

Chances are, if the promotion had paid off in a string of HBO converts, we’d have seen a continuation of the effort at Yankee Stadium since then. But so far in the ALCS, the sky over Houston has been littered with scaly flying monsters. In a week, Fox will likely ask a bunch of young actors to pretend they like baseball while sitting in the bleachers at the venue that will host the World Series opener. In a cruel twist of fate, animal control‘s Joel McHale, a die-hard Mariners enthusiast, and Jon Hamm (Grimsburg), an old-school card player, could be recruited to cheer on one of the clubs that knocked their own favorites out of the playoffs.

It’s a cruel business and not particularly effective. “I never realized how showing some people sitting in the rain with SAG-AFTRA cards in their pockets would get fans to check out their new workplace comedy,” said the marketing executive. “Parasitism is also a form of synergy, and I can’t remember the last time someone invited a tapeworm to the World Series.”


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