Somehow, I knew it was only a matter of time until this happened.
This form of content marketing will become the rage as TV commercials, while still the most visible of all advertising strategies, becomes less visible with the advent of DVRs, iPads, on-demand services and other devices/services. Advertisers have been worried for years about what to do about it, and it was only natural that brands would take over some of the content.
In some ways, this is an old idea. Most of us are too young to remember that the advent of television had something like this, such as the Texaco Star Theater variety show that was broadcast in the 50s.
It worked, and I never quite understood why brands moved away from that. It might have been the rise of the advertising agency. In a thirst to win awards, agencies started making 30-second movies that served more as entertainment than marketing. The natural evolution of the content never took place.
These announcements have brought us back, and even one step further. While the Red Bull TV channel will feature Red Bull-sponsored sporting events, the Hulu series is made by the brand itself. Its purpose is to support its “Food with Integrity” brand promise.
Whether it works will depend on if the series is actually, you know, any good.