Smith’s a branded content outfit this week launched the biggest brand funded TV show yet in the UK – a $2 million, seven-part cooking series on Channel 5 called Family Cook Off- bankrolled by British supermarket giant Tesco.
The Australian format was launched on the Nine Network last year with Coles and is now being rapidly employed around the world by some of the largest names in grocery retailing. Tesco has rights to the show in the UK and other markets it operates in places such as Malaysia.
French grocery giant, Carrefour, is bankrolling the show across multiple markets in Europe; a Canadian broadcaster is about to launch the format and Singapore’s biggest retailer, Fair price, is doing so as well. “Although we’ve been caught up in a branded content craze several times in the past ten years” Smith agrees marketers are in the midst of another flurry of activity exploring content ventures outside previous advertising methods and this time it will probably attach.
Indeed the much-touted branded content trend has run hot and cold several times as big brands, communications agencies of all types including media, digital and creative and production companies got ahead of themselves by anticipating a new dawn and potential pot of gold. Some have worked, while others haven’t.
However, as pressure keeps building on traditional advertising formats and digital media offspring demand for more content across new channels, the race is back on for brands to support themselves with stories, ideas and entertainment. Qantas, Westfield, Coca-Cola, Nestle, Audi, Dell and Volkswagen are just a smattering of the big names investing heavily in their own content in Australia at this present state of time.
“We are going to see brands getting much more in bed with directors and producers and less with their traditional agencies” – Perry Smith, Chief Executive, Brand New Media