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Posts Tagged ‘NBC’

NBC Uses News Shows to Promote Sitcoms

NBC's 1600 PennVia our sister site TVNewser, we bring you an ethics debate: NBC has now used its “editorial” news shows Rock Center, Today and Meet the Press to promote its upcoming White House sitcom 1600 Penn. (Well, OK, it was the Meet the Press web channel if you want to get all technical, but the clip will still appear on some affiliates.)

We understand the network’s need to go all out to promote its newest property. Now that The Voice is over, NBC is pretty much guaranteed to drop back into its perennial loser status among the big networks.

Still, we have to ask: is the network crossing a line by hyping the show on its supposedly serious editorial programs? Joe Flint at the Los Angeles Times thinks so:

To be sure, the idea of media companies making use of their platforms to advertise their own assets and personalities is nothing new. ABC’s Good Morning America has no qualms about using its valuable time to talk about Dancing With the Stars.

But NBC is becoming the most aggressive in doing this and if it continues it could harm the credibility of its news division.

Crazy idea, but maybe news programming should be kept to news.

What do we think? Does NBC risk harming the credibility of its news division with this kind of everywhere-all-at-once promotion? What’s their marketing team so afraid of, anyway?

Humanitarian Cop Hits The Today Show

The New York City police officer behind this heartwarming viral photo/PR win appeared on NBC‘s Today this morning to flesh out his story.

Jennifer Foster, the tourist who snapped the pic, joined him, describing his now-famous decision to buy shoes and socks for a freezing homeless man as “an act of human kindness…he had no intention of receiving any credit for it”. Officer Lawrence DePrimo downplayed his instant celebrity, calling it “surreal and humbling” and saying that he simply did “what any other officer in this city would do”. One has to admire his modesty.

‘Today’ Show Producer: Leave Matt Lauer Alone!

NBC’s perennial ratings champion “Today” recently made some fairly big changes by pushing old hand Ann Curry out in favor of fresh-faced Savannah Guthrie. Amazingly, the world continued to turn.

But there’s a bit of tension over at 30 Rock these days, because “Good Morning America” has finally started to beat “Today” in the ratings after a nearly unbroken 16-year streak playing runner-up.

Right after the switch, media gossips began to wonder whether “Today’s” biggest star (apologies to mid-day drinking aficionados Kathy and Hoda) was behind the change. Even Al Roker came down on Ann’s side by accusing Matt of “throw[ing] one of us under the bus.” Leave it to the New York Post to come up with a fitting nickname for “Anchor Animal” Lauer and accuse him of being too demanding on set. Juicy!

Well, in an apparent attempt to control the rumors and counter the negative press, executive producer Jim Bell gave interviews to both The Hollywood Reporter and The New York Times “Media Decoder” blog this week.

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Britain Finds Novel Ways to Bond with Global Audience

London’s 2012 Olympic Games may have inspired love at first sight among the viewing public and attendees, but from a marketing communications standpoint it’s been a long, drawn-out courtship.

“We’ve been preparing for the Olympics since 2005. To inspire visitation, our strategy has been to socialize the travel experience and centralize content to support marketing and PR,” says Karen Clarkson, VP North America for VisitBritain. She spoke at the Association for Travel Marketing Executives’ Marketing Issues Forum on Thursday in New York, discussing her company’s Olympics efforts and plans for the next James Bond movie, Skyfall.

Britain has enjoyed extended time in the public spotlight this year, from the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebration in June to the Olympic Games in July, the Paralympics in August and London’s Fashion Week in September. As Clarkson noted, “It’s been an opportunity to influence information about London and beyond, and not limited to sports related content. For the Olympics, we established digital content partnerships with NBC, Yahoo, The Travel Channel, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today and Travel & Leisure magazine.” She said that these partnerships helped the company generated $600 million worth of earned media impressions.

While partnership marketing plays a key role in VisitBritain’s operations, “social is at the heart of everything we do,” Clarkson explained. She described a unique pre-Olympics project in which Britain worked with the U.S. Olympic Committee to “engage athletes and have them experience Britain firsthand before the Games.” They selected and sent seven American Olympics athletes to Britain in the fall of 2011 “to showcase the destination from a U.S. perspective and to appeal to a younger demographic.” The athletes generated visual content as they interacted with their fan bases on Facebook and Twitter.

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SNL Can’t Seem to Make Obama Funny

Saturday Night Live” started its new season this week, using omnipresent “Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane and musical guest Frank Ocean to boost viewership while showcasing a few new cast members—and a brand new president.

We never really understood where Fred Armisen wanted to take his Obama impressions. He was almost always stiff and uncomfortable in the role, playing the part of straight man while others set up halfhearted jokes around him. We’re glad that media personalities got over their initial aversion to making fun of Obama, but writers and comedians obviously still face a big challenge in trying to make the man funny.

New guy Jay Pharoah has a history of impersonating the president in his stand-up acts, so we’re not surprised to see that he is better when it comes to reproducing Obama’s tics, but on watching his debut we didn’t detect much in the way of, you know, jokes–and Jason Sudeikis’s moronic Mitt Romney is even worse.

Our verdict? It’s still a long way from funny. If Obama does manage to get re-elected, we look forward to four more years of avoiding SNL’s consistently lame impersonations. Agreed?

‘Newsroom’ Star’s Topless Tweet: A PR Stunt?

We always (read: never) count on New York’s Daily News to deliver the hardest-hitting stories, and today they brought the bacon! The morning’s top gossip concerns Alison Pillan actress currently starring in HBO‘s “The Newsroom“–and a little accident she had yesterday…

After using her Twitter feed to jump on the NBC hate train and call the network out for airing the now-infamous Kris Jenner breast implant interview during Tuesday’s 9/11 moment of silence, Pill accidentally sent a topless photo of herself to more than 20,000 followers.

Pill quickly retracted the tweet and apologized, blaming her lack of tech savvy and claiming that she had intended to delete the offending pic. Fiancé and human beanpole Jay Baruchel played down the drama, tweeting: “My fiancée is an hilarious dork. #imjustgladitdidnthappentomefirst. Smartphones will get ya.”

Our initial embarrassment on Pill’s behalf gave way to a bit of cynicism: Might there be a chance that she tweeted the pic on purpose? Read more

NBC Tries, Fails to Promote New Sitcom During Football

We can’t help but laugh at the always-hapless NBC‘s attempt to promote its new Matthew Perry sitcom “Go On” during Sunday Night Football by zooming in on the actor seated in the stands as the pop-up promo for his show runs at the bottom of the screen. And we have to admire the skills of the fans who chose to perform this peculiar videobomb: How was their timing so perfect? It’s almost like they were in on it from the start…http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8446/7967505918_e1f7cf0bed_o.gif

We should clarify for the record, though: We will not be watching this show.

Media Training Tips and Cautionary Tales

In the high-risk, high-reward world of media training, major stumbles during television interviews are seared indefinitely in the public’s memory. Nailing an interview is not so easy, even for well-known public figures and corporate executives.

Media relies on basic principles and varied techniques. Today we’re focusing on seven tips–and what can happen when interviewees ignore them. As noted below, not everyone is as well-versed in handling the media as Joe Torre, (left) a former Major League Baseball manager.

Preparation is key since winging it is never a good idea. Interviewees need to wrap their heads around not only the core topics, but also the show, the interviewer and his or her questioning style. An example of what not to do? Herman Cain appeared completely clueless when asked about Libya during a video interview in Milwaukee last November, leaving several seconds of awkward, empty air time.

Keep answers brief, limited to quick sound bites. While Vice President Joe Biden is well known for his rambling remarks, the communicator in chief may need to heed this tip as well: During NYU’s Hospitality Investment Conference in June, NBC’s Chuck Todd predicted that President Obama may not win the first debate this fall, because [almost] no one has cut his remarks short during his term in office–and debates have strict time limits.

Beware softball questions. “What newspapers and magazines do you read?” is not a technically difficult question. Still, it was enough to trip up Sarah Palin during her now-infamous interview with Katie Couric during the 2008 Presidential election that was later parodied on SNL.

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‘Boardwalk Empire’ Blows Up Brooklyn

HBO’s well-dressed but underwhelming period drama “Boardwalk Empire” turned heads in Greenpoint, Brooklyn last night the old-fashioned way: by blowing stuff up!

Seems like every city news source reported yesterday on an explosion that would “rock parts of Greenpoint and Manhattan”–and the show’s tech crew did indeed send a line of prop storefronts up in flames just before 11 PM last night. We guess this is a good way to build buzz and emphasize the fact that your show has…very impressive production values.

Anyway, we’ll leave it to NBC New York’s old hand Chuck Scarborough:

Check out The L Magazine‘s photos and get back to us: Were you close to the action last night? (For what it’s worth, we were about a mile away and we didn’t quite see what all the fuss was about. And as much as we may love Steve Buscemi, we feel the same way about the show itself.)

NBC’s ‘Stars Earn Stripes’ Lands with a Thud

More bad news for NBC: their new military-themed reality competition show “Stars Earn Stripes”, which attracted some 100 protestors to their 30 Rock studios yesterday, isn’t quite the hit they were hoping for.

The Monday crowd included some very irate military parents, and a list of notable personalities who signed an earlier letter to studio head Robert Greenblatt demanding he cancel the show boasted several Nobel Peace Prize winners who called it “a massive disservice to those who live and die in armed conflict and suffer its consequences long after the guns of war fall silent.” Heavy stuff, that.

This isn’t the first controversy over “SES”: Read more

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