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Iceberg Ahead?: Jeff Zucker on Why NBC’s Olympic Coverage is Genius

zucker-main-port-large.jpgJeff Zucker, Portfolio cover boy, and president & CEO of NBC Universal — also known as the company scurrying furiously around trying to keep any shred of Olympic video from appearing anywhere but on its site — was on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” today, basking in the glory of the gazillion dollars NBC is set to make from the Beijing Games (as though this is a sign of the strength of network television and not one last hurrah before it sinks itself into the ocean with its antiquated thinking…we’re still a bit miffed about the opening ceremonies, by the way). Here’s some of what he had to say about NBC’s “tremendous” Olympic coverage.

There’s no question we did the right thing in holding the Opening Ceremony to air in prime time on NBC that night. The excitement that built out of word of mouth that the opening ceremony was the most spectacular thing that people had seen, that China wanted to make a statement and they made a statement and people wanted to see that. I think what’s been great we’ve been able to bottle that excitement since the opening ceremony and I think the team has captured that in every day since.

But one of the great things to come out of these Olympic Games is that the tremendous use of our digital properties online and the great viewership online and the tremendous number of page views is really teaching us a tremendous amount about what people want to consume — great content. And so we’re going to come out of these Olympics with great digital knowledge and hopefully we’ll be able to turn those digital pennies into digital if not dollars digital fifty cent pieces at some point.

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