05/08/15: Pitbull gets more airtime with Endemol; TheStreet gives the world extra Jim Cramer; Mindy Project may move to Hulu



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CYNOPSISDIGITAL
05.08.15

Good morning. It’s Friday May 8, 2015, and this is your first early morning digital briefing.

AT THE NEWFRONTS

 
Endemol Beyond’s NewFronts presentation Thursday highlighted plans to launch two new digital-first networks. First is pop culture-focused Looksy and second is Smasher, a sports & gaming network led by digital stars Toby Turner and Jesse Wellens, who have almost 30 million YouTube subscribers between them. Looksy will have plenty of new content, including scripted series Neurotica and reality series True Internet Tales. Smasher will feature international imports Rule’m Sports and Legends of Gaming from Endemol Beyond UK. The company is also launching two new series with ubiquitous rapper Pitbull: MasterClass, which focuses on encouraging viewers to live life to the fullest, and Pitbull Presents, an introduction to a few of the everyday people in Pitbull’s life who are important to him. Pitbull is already involved with Endemol series Gentleman’s Code and The Most Bad Ones. Endemol just signed a deal with American Idol finalist Jessica Sanchez that will have the singer featured in a number of the brand’s series.
 
TheStreet
kicked off its event by announcing four new shows and letting the crowd know that TheStreet TV’s team produces more than 600 pieces of content each month. The programs will be Disruptors, which introduces viewers to the latest tech gadgets; Perspectives From Wall Street, which will feature TheStreet.com cofounder and chairman Jim Cramer along with two other financial experts and anchor Rhonda Schaffler, TheStreet’s Editor at Large; Financial Fix, which will select one person from Facebook and Twitter to help each month; and The Gamechanger, which will profile up-and-coming entrepreneurs.
 
 

NEW PROGRAMMING + DEALS

 
Music fans apparently like to know every little thing about their fave musicians. Social media platform WeAre8 is debuting a four-part series that will take Usher fans “closer … than they have ever been before through its unique integration of video, photos, links and the written word.” The series kicked off with the broadcast of the musician’s recent Earth Day concert.
 
Fox is dumping Universal Television’s The Mindy Project and according to The Hollywood Reporter, it will reappear on Hulu for its fourth season and possibly more. During the 2014-15 season, the show averaged a 1.4 rating in the 18-49 demo and 2.9 million viewers.
 
YouTube stars may always be shifting and changing but now two will be completely frozen in time. Comedy duo Smosh, who have 20.3 million subscribers, were recently named the most beloved celebs among Americans between the ages of 13 and 18. So those fans will be happy when they go to Madame Tussauds Wax Museum in San Francisco come June. That’s when the figures of Smoshers Ian Hecox and Anthony Padilla will debut – a first for digital video celebs.
 

FROM INTX

 
Arris is bringing Pandora to the set-top via the Arris Market, a platform it launched last summer through which the company’s pay TV partners can integrate OTT content with live video programming. “Music is a universal experience that’s unique to every listener, and Pandora captures this special quality perfectly,” said Ron Miller, Arris VP, product management for consumer solutions.
 
Comcast is walking the talk when it comes to reaching out to the younger demo. The operator’s Xfinity brand is, ahem, filing a blank space on Taylor Swift’s The 1989 World Tour. Xfinity customers will get access to behind-the-scenes video footage from tour rehearsals, plus a chance to win tickets and even to meet Swift.
 
TiVo and Arris struck a deal to bring the TiVo experience to Arris-made set-tops, and Jeff Klugman, TiVo EVP/GM, products and revenue, told Cynopsis where he sees his company’s largest struggle and opportunity in the cable universe. “The biggest competition we have are the very large MVPDs, with a desire to build it themselves. Comcast has built a good guide with X1. But are we going to be in an overall guide business with Comcast? Probably not. Can we help them with their discovery? Maybe,” he said. “It’s hard for smaller MSOs with 1 million-5 million subscribers to spend that kind of money. We’ve been successful with the 1.5 million to 2 million-subscriber point and below, and we have the opportunity to penetrate from 5 to 6 million. That middle ground is where we can provide a compelling solution.”
 
What’s next for NBCU’s TVE initiative? After generating 1.4 billion impressions with its Watch TV Without the TV campaign that included 14 networks, 25 shows, VOD and live events that ran November-January, VP, consumer marketing for TVE Alexa Wilson said the company will focus its marketing around “the sweet spots of our networks… No matter how much money you spend on a campaign, at the end of the day, the number one driver for TVE viewership is content.” Wilson said the push on cable nets will come during the summer, broadcast in the fall and around live tent-pole events like the Olympics.
 
—Cathy Applefeld Olson
 
 

CONTENT MEDIA

 
A+E Networks
set a new monthly record in April with 85.6 million video views, breaking the previous mark set in March. Top shows for the month were Dance Moms (Lifetime), Vikings (History), Bates Motel (A&E), and Married at First Sight (A&E/FYI).
 
 

RESEARCH

 
Mobile video advertising took a 15% jump up in the first quarter from the same period last year, and pulls in more than half of mobile-advertising revenue in general, according to the State of Mobile Advertising Report from Opera Mediaworks that was just released. It also shows that Android beat out iOS for the first time ever in the categories of traffic and revenue. iOS, however, still tops Android when it comes to the ratio of revenue to impressions. Social Networking headed the list for top revenue earner for mobile advertising for the quarter, beating out traditional category leader Music, Video, and Media. Android took a 45.8% share of the total revenue earned from mobile advertising in the first quarter.
 
Most cord-cutters are coming from the satellite industry, according to a new report from TiVo. Data shows that 32% of the cord-cutters surveyed formerly used satellite DVRs. The cost and the dissatisfaction with the overall features were the biggest reasons people made the switch, the research found. The survey was conducted late last year with more than 500 recent TiVo Roamio OTA DVR purchaser. The Roamio is built specifically for the cord-cutting market.
 


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MOBILE GAMING + APPS

 
Jermaine Dupri is known mostly as a record producer, songwriter, and rapper, but now he’s making his move into the mobile-gaming world. His new 4 Lanes mobile game is based on the lyric “switching four lanes” that was in his 1998 duet with Jay-Z, “Money Ain’t a Thang.” The goal of the game, of course, is to avoid haters while snagging bags of cash along the way.
 
The original Snake mobile game was released in 1997 when the mobile world was a whole lot different from today. Game creator Taneli Armanto has teamed up with Armanto and Rumilus Design to launch a far more advanced version of the game, Snake Rewind. It will be available for free on May 14.
 
 

ADVERTISING + AD PLATFORMS

 
Calling the Facebook video ad team: A new report from Innerscope Research that measured such things as changes in heart rate, breathing, and “skin conductance” on 390 18-34-year-old viewers of video ads on Facebook, TV, and other platforms found that 47% of Facebook users immediately ignore or skip video ads, but the same ads were four times less engaging on FB than on other platforms. Bigger screens made for more effective ads. The report recommends that video ads should be bright, use bold copy, and have early branding moments.
 
Nielsen announced a partnership with data management platform Krux on Wednesday. The pair will offer multi-touch attribution measurement to clients. This will allow marketers to measure campaigns across screens, including mobile, set-top boxes, and OTT devices.
 
 

TECHNOLOGY

 
Rumored: Microsoft will be putting DVR capabilities onto its Xbox One console. It already serves as a TV tuner and users can currently pause live TV, but cannot save programming for later viewing.
 
 

EXEC MOVES

 
xAd hired Brandon Starkoff to be VP of Global Brands and Agencies. He was formerly EVP of Starcom MediaVest Group.
 
 
A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE


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DIGITAL SPOTLIGHT OF THE DAY

 
Stan Lee may be 92, but he still can’t get enough of superheroes. After all, this is the man who cocreated Spider-Man, the Incredible Hulk, Iron Man, the Fantastic Four, and a slew of others. He wants to keep on creating and his company, Pow! Entertainment, has teamed up with YouTube Spaces in L.A., London, Tokyo, New York, and São Paulo to help creators there make superhero videos. Sets of such things as a secret lair with a high-tech command center, science lab and weapons locker exist in those locations for creators for creators to use. Stan Lee and Pow! Will work one-on-one with some of the creators and the world will get to see what happens in June and July. www.cynopsis.com/#video.

See you Monday,
Jessica Reese  @JMarieReese
05.08.15

Roberta Caploe: Associate Publisher @robertacaploe
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