The entertainment partnerships function is a cornerstone of any Digital Place Based Media operation. It supplies 75% of the airtime, and to be economically viable, must be crazy cheap to operate.
And if it can become a profit center, all the better.
Typically, the consumer experience problem falls into one of two categories: ENTERTAIN ME and EDUCATE ME.
At the Checkout line, and in the quick-serve restaurant, A-list content from major leagues and networks is there to delight and amuse the viewer. In the Big-Box Electronics department, the content seen across a wall of TVs must be as useful as it is entertaining: it is there to guide the consumer to make the best possible purchase of a pricy new 4K set, tablet, or phone.
I had the privilege of leading the PRN Entertainment Partnerships practice at a critical inflection point in short-form media: thanks to YouTube, content was proliferating in quantity but quality was placing a distant second. At PRN, we built a team of culturally aware and altogether wonderful strategists who worked hand-in-hand with scores of content providers to deliver programming which enabled the PRN consumer experience practice to be the leader that it is today.
Bespoke Technology Content
CNET and CBS Interactive were longtime allies in crafting custom content tuned for the big box retail experience.
I partnered with host/writer Brian Cooley and CNET's production team to produce some 75 spots over four years, designed to inspire extended dwell times, and thus greater curiosity, in electronics departments at Target and Costco and Sam's Club.
Entertainment partnerships examples
CNET IOT spots
Sponsored content is another animal. Often brands seek help translating their awesomeness into emerging and esoteric media. DPBM, by nature, enables transactions, as the media is played moments before a consumer makes a choice - to buy or not to buy.
Crafting content to the unique opportunities and constraints of the built environment takes a deep level of consultation and guidance.
The Content Partnerships practice at PRN became a profit center by bringing key partners to the fold who were great matches for brands' messages. Like Dreyer's Ice Cream. It scored a big win with a long-time favorite, Sam the Cooking Guy, as he served up an awesome (and fast!) dessert idea that put a scoop of vanilla into a whole new light.
Gillette also approached us, to make a narrative tie-in to their 5-week promise of a lasting Razor blade. We made 'Top 5 Travels' - content that served to give the viewer an even deeper slice into the lifestyle that Gillette embodied, through wanderlust globetrotting.
Sponsored content examples
A few more examples
Sam the Cooking Guy can teach us more in 30 seconds about healthy and easily-made snacks than most anyone. He's become a staple on supermarket and big-box retail networks with bespoke how-to's that are deservedly rated highly by retailers, sponsors, and shoppers.
Consumer Electronics education is never-ending when speaking to the rest of us: those residing comfortably in the middle 60% of the adoption curve.
Quaint as it is to watch today, in its time, there was a genuine need of big box consumers to get the basics of things as basic as... basic tablets.