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Upfronts Download: HBO Max shares new details on ad tier, CBS relies on acronyms

Welcome to Upfronts Download, Ad Age’s special pop-up TV upfronts roundup where we bring you breaking news and some of the very best( and worst) of TV’s( virtual) dog-and-pony show, curated by Jeanine Poggi, assistant managing editor.

The usual follower carnival of the upfronts is certainly more subdued as once again we watch productions from our home office and breakfast nook tables. On this last day of the upfronts, I am working from the dead zone in my house to recreate the experience of having no wifi in Carnegie Hall and frantically trying to tweet pictures of whatever get-up CBS’ JoAnn Ross came on stagecoach wearing.

Business as usual?

WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar kicked off the company’s upfront presentation by assuring advertisers things will be business as usual in the upfronts despite the news this week that the company would be combined with Discovery in a mega-deal.

“Ours is a rapidly evolving industry and we are transforming with it, ” Kilar said. “Together we will form a "companies ", super-serving our advertisers with a promise to unite WarnerMedia labels with Discovery symbols, all under one banner.”

Of course, for Kilar, the future remains uncertain, as Discovery CEO David Zaslav has been tapped to lead the mixed entity.

HBO Max comes to TV

In an effort to drive awareness and sampling for HBO Max, WarnerMedia is bringing some of the originals from the streaming pulpit to TBS and TNT. Dubbed “Front Row, ” these programs will air with limited business. Of track, WarnerMedia predecessor Turner has been touting lighter commercial-grade consignments on TV since at least 2015, where reference is said primetime originals on truTV would run with merely 10 instants of commercial-grade period per hour. But, eventually, it was a challenge to get the math on those efforts to add up.

Update on Max

WarnerMedia also catered some brand-new detailed information about the ad ordeal for HBO Max’s ad-supported tier. Kilar called the upcoming ad know-how “elegant, ” and the company indicated to new ad produces like the pervasive “pause” ads that have become a mainstay of other streaming scaffolds; “branded discovery, ” which countenances brands to surround the content discovery process as consumers explore HBO Max recommended programming; and “brand block, ” where firebrands own a block of content. There will be no more than four minutes of ads per hour with countless evidences, including HBO originals, airing with no ads. The highly foreseen “Friends” reunion will run with commercials. The ad-supported tier, which will debut next month, will cost $ 9.99 per month.

I’ll be there for you

Speaking of the return of our favorite group of friends, WarnerMedia launched new details regarding the special, which will debut on May 27. Suns David Schwimmer and Matt LeBlanc materialized via videoconference to talk up the reunion, which will include the return of the iconic accommodation specify, readings of some classic pipelines from old writes, and special guest images from stars like Tom Selleck. Watch the trailer here.

How is the TV industry responding to the streaming struggles? On May 24 and May 25 hear from ad auctions leads, authority senior executives and top labels on the state of the TV ad marketplace and how streaming is poised to reinvent the $20 billion upfront mart. RSVP here.

Betting on acronyms

CBS will lean on the tried and true in the die with new versions of “CSI, ” “FBI” and “NCIS, ” as it examines to drive viewership with shows that already have a built-in audience.

The Eye network will include “NCIS: Hawaii, ” starring Vanessa Lachey; “CSI: Vegas, ” a sequel to the original appearance; and “FBI: International, ” which follows the FBI’s International Fly team, to its dusk lineup.

CB'S move to double down on these dealerships comes as attention is shifting to streaming scaffolds, including its own Paramount +. By adding shows that are familiar to consumers and advertisers, the hope is to keep loyalists singing in to linear TV in some fad.

Endless teasers

I spent at least an hour of my daylight today watching what was almost like a loop-the-loop of the information contained jumble. Both WarnerMedia and ViacomCBS opened their virtual representations with incredibly long skits that tried to cram in nearly every program and high-profile talent( human and otherwise) in an attempt to show just how deep their portfolios extend. While I will take all the Leslie Odom Jr. I can get, these fame mashups went on far too long, uttering the patchwork of the information contained almost indistinguishable.

Super Bowl in Spanish

For the first time, the Super Bowl will air on a Spanish-language broadcast network. NBCUniversal-owned Telemundo will air the Big Game on its sports network, Telemundo Deportes, in 2022. As one of the purposes of the deal with the NFL, the network will too air "Sunday Night Football" for the next 13 seasons.

That does it for Upfronts Download--thanks for reading.

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