[opendtv] News: TELEVISION programmers are looking to make the Web a lot more like TV

  • From: Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: OpenDTV Mail List <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 27 May 2005 07:02:05 -0400



Published: May 27, 2005

TELEVISION programmers are looking to make the Web a lot more like TV.

On Tuesday, the emerging-media group at Scripps Networks, part of the 
E. W. Scripps Company, plans to introduce an all-video Web site that 
will use programming from its Food Network, Fine Living, HGTV and DIY 
Network brands, as well as new clips.

A major advertiser in Scripps offline media,  General Motors' GMC 
division, has paid for a video showroom on the site and a presence 
throughout it.

Others are likely to follow, as advertisers show a growing interest 
in the approach. "One of the biggest drivers for online advertising 
the first time was Web sites advertising on other Web sites," said 
Peter Petrusky, director for advisory services at 
PricewaterhouseCoopers. "This time it's being buoyed by the offline 
brand builders like Coke,  Honda,  Nike, Visa and  Nestlé."

Alexia S. Quadrani, a senior managing director at Bear Stearns who 
follows the publishing and advertising industries, predicted more 
traditional publishers would follow the lead of Scripps. "You are 
seeing a lot more content go online because there is a demand for 
it," she said.

Web video - once too halting to bother with - is much easier to look 
at now, as high-speed Internet access spreads.

More than 34 million homes in the United States, representing 29.9 
percent of households, had broadband connections last year, according 
to eMarketer, an online research provider. By 2008, eMarketer 
projects, broadband will be in 69.4 million homes, or 56.3 percent of 

Web surfers have proved their willingness to watch live sports online 
for more than an hour at a time, said Bart Feder, president and chief 
executive at FeedRoom, a provider of broadband video technology to 
clients like NBC, Reuters and Telemundo.

The people who visit a Telemundo site to find video synopses of its 
Spanish-language telenovela soap operas watch for an average of 20 
minutes at a time, he said. "That suggests that the quality is such 
that people are very happy to consume video content on their 
computers," Mr. Feder said.

GMC spent $241.5 million last year to advertise in major United 
States media, only $4.7 million of that on the Internet, according to 
estimates by TNS Media Intelligence.

The share of GMC's budget devoted to nontraditional advertising has 
been growing at a "very fast rate" over the last five years, said 
Steve Rosenblum, its marketing director.

"We first considered the Web as we would any media," Mr. Rosenblum 
said. "Let's take a static ad, put it on someone else's Web site, 
draw people to our Web site, increase traffic and eventually increase 

With broadband and the video clips, the company's products can be 
seen in vignettes on the new Scripps site. "The more seamlessly 
you're integrated into a site, the greater the relevance is to the 
consumer," Mr. Rosenblum said.

  The home page at www.living.com, which is labeled "driven by GMC," 
shows six categories for visitors to choose from, like "Remodeling" 
and "Food." Clicking on a category leads to pages where visitors can 
again select from several videos - like "New Ceiling Fan."

Most of the videos in the Web showroom feature specific GMC products. 
Scripps plans to update the library of video clips, which last two to 
four minutes, every two weeks.

Other advertisers may sign up, but the site will remain relatively 
uncluttered, said Susan Canavari, senior vice president for marketing 
at  Digitas, which handles interactive, promotion and relationship 
marketing duties for GMC. "The intent is not for this to become a 
site that's full of product placement and advertising," she said.
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