Fox will give American Idol host Ryan Seacrest the chance to do the seemingly impossible: Appear on a show that, at times, can draw even bigger audiences than the all-powerful Idol: Fox’s Super Bowl pregame show. He’ll host entertainment segments from a set, outside the Arizona Cardinals’ stadium positioned to intercept incoming celebs. It’s the latest instance of TV sports incorporating red-carpet-style coverage, a genre epitomized by reporters posing this question: “Who are you wearing?”
Fox Sports Chairman David Hill says there’s a rationale in using Seacrest that goes beyond using the Super Bowl to cross-promote Fox’s biggest hit. Other Fox cross-promotion will include Neil Cavuto, expected to star on Fox’s upcoming business channel, to talk about the Super Bowl’s impact on, say, avocado sales. “I see Ryan as a latter-day Dick Clark, who was a conduit through which America viewed pop culture,” says Hill. “He’s on his way toward assuming Dick Clark’s mantle.”
Said Seacrest, in a statement: “This will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of my career. Seacrest, out.”
Hill suggests “more and more celebrities are showing up at Super Bowls, and they’re being ignored.” Unfortunately, the average American can’t do much to address that tragedy. But Fox can address that sad oversight even as it captures an eternal truth: “We’ll balance football and entertainment and —bingo!— that’s what the Super Bowl is all about.”
Prescription: When Fox last aired Superbowl three years ago,” Idol” had yet to become the phenomenon it is now. Only strategic thinking and targeted planning could pull off such a full encompasing PR/ Marketing strategy such as this one and possibly set Fox up as the home of the superbowl.
Lets look at this new homegrown audience Fox is pulling together: the gazillion fans of “Idol” which include a percantage of tween girls, boys and grandma’s who probably dont really watch sports but are more likely to tune in with Seacrest as host, an underserved audience who love celebrities ( gasp), the money crunchers who probably only really watched for the commercials now tuning in for Neil Cavuto and, lest we forget, the Sports fans! All these mixed together for a yummy ratings pie.
At the end of the day its a branding miracle and the ultimate 401k plan for a TV network. Fox wins by carefully crafting a progam that serves every desirable demographic and sets up rating for future programing.
What do you think about this?
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