Tuesday, April 30th, 2013



When you look at Connecticut, you’ll see numerous companies, large and small, blazing new trails in today’s global economy. Among these pioneers is ESPN, the world’s leader in sports programming. Based in Bristol, the company uses innovative technologies to stay at the forefront of digital broadcasting and event coverage. From its inception, ESPN has proudly called Connecticut “home.” To learn more about building your business in Connecticut, visit www.CtforBusiness.com today.

Cynopsis: DIGITAL

Good morning. It’s Tuesday, April 30, 2013, and this is a special digital briefing covering the 2013 Digital Content NewFronts.

The 2013 Digital Content NewFronts got off to a quick start with four official presentations yesterday from The Wall Street Journal, The Weather Company, Microsoft Advertising, and Yahoo.



WSJ Start-up of the Year: A new episodic documentary series for the Journal’s online video platform, WSJ Live, which currently averages 20-25 million streams per month across 30 platforms. Scheduled to premiere on June 24, the documentary will follow 25 start-ups over the course of five months. Along the way, the start-ups will receive guidance from a number of big-name business leaders and influencers, including: Sir Richard Branson (Virgin Group), Steve Case (former CEO of AOL), will.i.am (musician and Founder of i.am.Angel), Ray Kurzweil (Director/Engineering at Google), Carly Fiorina (former Chairman and CEo of Hewlett-Packard), David Sacks (CEO and Founder of Yammer, and producer on Thank You for Smoking), and MC Hammer (the one and only), among others. WSJ editors, working with the mentors, will consider viewer votes and ultimately decide the winner. WSJ says this is its most expensive foray into original online programming to date. WSJ will announce the 25 start-ups selected to participate in the series in the coming weeks. Each start-up is based in the US, has a prototype or proof of concept in place, and is generating less than $10 million in revenue. The show is produced in conjunction with NY-based production company Ish Entertainment.

Seib & Wessel: An existing news series hosted by Gerald F. Seib, WSJ’s Washington Bureau Chief, and David Wessel, the company’s Economics Editor. The series features roundtable discussions related to the biggest news, political, and policy stories of the week.

Business of Celebrity: Hosted by Lee Hawkins, News Editor at WSJ, this talk show, another existing program on WSJ Live, brings in celebrities to discuss their business ventures as well as other timely topics.

WSJ Cafe: A returning series hosted by Chris Farley, Senior Editorial Director/Digital Features at The Journal. Each episode features a performance and one-on-one interview with a musician/band.

Marketing, Promotions, and Distribution

The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) has signed on as exclusive sponsor for WSJ’s Start-up of the Year. Opting for “content marketing” rather than just regular ads, NYSE’s sponsored content will include interviews with the entrepreneurs behind Box and Evernote, as well as Guy Kawasaki. Last year, NYSE launched Big Start-Up, a nationwide jobs growth initiative designed to connect new companies and entrepreneurs with corporate America by implementing programs that make it easier to access capital, business opportunities, and education.

WSJ WorldStream: Features unscripted, unedited videos from WSJ’s editorial team. WSJ plans to sell sponsorships in monthly packages starting in June.

WSJ Custom Content Group: It’s an in-house production unit that can help brands create videos around relevant “themes,” which would then be distributed to targeted spots on WSJ Live.

The Wall Street Journal’s NewFront pitch focused on its ability to help advertisers reach an “affluent, influential” audience across the globe. “We can get you to people that own Apple, GE, and IBM,” said Dow Jones CEO Lex Fenwick. “Our content travels the world. Most people only care about the politics or sports of their own town or country. However, business news, finance, luxury, the stuff that we write about, travels extremely well. We have started to open international sites in places like China, Japan, Turkey, Germany, and soon, Brazil.”

And video is increasingly becoming an important part of the WSJ package: “We turn to digital products to keep our readers and viewers — increasingly viewers — informed. Today our video footprint is vast,” added Gerard Baker, Managing Editor of WSJ and Editor-in-Chief of Dow Jones. “[We are producing] over 100 hours of new video each month.”

This content will also be accessible in a number of ways, as WSJ Live is available on 30 different platforms, including distribution partners like AOL On and YouTube.

“Wherever you need to reach affluent and influential people, WSJ will be there to lead the way,” said Michael Rooney, CRO at WSJ.


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The Weather Company unveiled six new web series — three previously announced during Weather’s Upfront, three announced for the first time yesterday — all of which will be produced under the Weather Films banner. Each show will consist of six, 2-4 minute episodes, with all six being made available at the same time.

Brink: Already announced. Launching in July, this show will document efforts to save endangered species.

Destination Uncharted: Already announced. A travel series exploring the “most stunning natural places on Earth.”

Grid Breakers: Already announced. Launching in September, this show follows explorers who have endured some of the world’s harshest weather conditions.

I Am Unstoppable: New. Launching in October, this show will follow six outdoor athletes who have overcome extraordinary obstacles to achieve their goals, including Sarah Reinertsen (who attended the event), the first full-leg amputee to complete the Ironman competition.

Virus Hunters: New. Launching in November, this show will document the work of scientists working hard to prevent deadly diseases from spreading. Virus Hunters will focus on the technological practices such as advanced data mining

Alive: New. Launching in December, the show spotlights Americans who survived manmade and natural disasters. Scientists will also be featured, explaining what happened during catastrophic events like tornadoes, hurricanes, shipwrecks, or a flight nearly crashing.

Marketing, Promotions, and Distribution

Home Depot has signed on as the first marketer to take advantage of The Weather Channel’s content and marketing partnership with Twitter. The Home Depot’s “Project of the Week” campaign will be featured in promoted tweets by The Weather Channel, with embedded video that will vary by location, weather, and seasonal conditions. 

The Weather Company also touted a recent deal with Disney for Oz: The Great and Powerful. For the James Franco-starring fantasy film, The Weather Company uploaded high-quality backgrounds on its mobile apps. These backgrounds were also weather-triggered, changing depending on what the weather was like outside. Mike Finnerty said the campaign was one of the top drivers of ticketing sales for the film’s opening weekend.

“Since January, we have achieved 100 percent delivery on all of our content driven ad campaigns,” said Neil Katz, VP & Editor-in-Chief/Digital.

The Weather Company is planning to distribute the aforementioned six new short-form series across its online, mobile, and TV properties (on TV it will air as short segments). This sort of distribution is not likely to be available from any of the other NewFront presenters, according to the company. “We are pushing video everywhere,” said Mike Finnerty, VP/Product for Weather.com.

The Weather Company’s cross-platform capabilities were a huge element of its NewFront presentation. The company honed in on the “3 X 100” slogan, by which it meant it has the capacity to reach 100 million TV viewers, 100 million uniques online, and 100 million app users. Curt Hecht, Chief Global Revenue Officer for The Weather Company told me that this gives the company the ability to “beat” both digital and cable companies. His only complaint about his job, Hecht added, is that people tend to blame him when the weather’s bad.

Neil Katz said The Weather Company reached 29 million unique visitors during Hurricane Sandy, generating 14 million video starts and 3 million live streams. What’s more, after a slight dip following the super-storm, the audience came back, and is consuming more content month over month, he said. Which was a good way to segue into previewing the aforementioned web series.



Partnership with OneBeat: OneBeat is an electronic dance music-centric entertainment studio. Microsoft and OneBeat are developing a new app for Xbox Live that will feature original content and “immersive storytelling experiences,” allowing brands to connect with EDM fans and culture.

The LeBrons, Season 2: Co-executive produced by Believe Entertainment Group, LeBron James, and Maverick Carter, the animated series will launch on May 10 exclusively on Xbox Live and the MSN Video Hub. The first season generated more than 50 million views online in 2011. Microsoft says it will promote the series on both Xbox and the Bing Sports app on Windows 8. It is also currently at work on “new content that capitalizes on second screen experiences through Xbox SmartGlass, as well as other Microsoft consumer platforms.”

Years of Living Dangerously: Microsoft will serve as the digital partner for the new Showtime TV series, which deals with issues related to climate change and is produced by Joel Bach and David Gelber (Emmy-winning producers of 60 Minutes), James Cameron (Titanic), Jerry Weintraub (producer of the Ocean’s Eleven trilogy), and Arnold Schwarzenegger (you definitely know who this guy is). Microsoft will offer additional content across MSN, Xbox, and Windows 8 platforms. This includes exclusive video segments, celebrity interviews, and behind-the-scenes content.

Marketing, Promotions, and Distribution

“According to our recent Cross-Engagement Study, 82% of consumers studied like being able to combine different devices to enable efficiency,” said Scott Ferris, GM for the TV & Video Media Group at Microsoft Advertising.

MSN “StageDoor”: A new video hub on MSN that aggregates “brand-safe” content across a variety of topics and subject matters. The hub offers original and catalogued content targeted to nine different audiences, across multiple screens including the Xbox. Microsoft said for each channel, it is offering sponsorship opportunities that range from custom product placements to segment branding. Chrysler has already signed on to sponsor the Tuned In channel on StageDoor.

Trium, an independent production studio founded by Mark Koops (The Biggest Loser), Jared Tobman, and Eric Day, has inked a new distribution deal for the online reality competition show Face to Face. Starring Shape Magazine’s Executive Beauty Director Cheryl Kramer Kaye, Face to Face pits two make-up artists as they compete in a series of challenges for a chance to land a feature on the beauty magazine. It has been airing on MSN since April 3. Trium has now locked up a deal with American Media Inc. (AMI), the owner and operator of a bunch of celebrity, health, and fitness-related media brands, to syndicate all 24 episodes of Face to Face on Shape.com and AMI’s digital distribution network. The show airs every other Wednesday, with MSN having exclusive rights to new episodes for 60 days, after which they will roll out to AMI properties.



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Yahoo’s video strategy has centered on two “verticals”: comedy and women’s lifestyle programming. This year’s NewFront expanded that portfolio with:

Tiny Commando: A new comedy series created by Ed Helms (The Office, The Hangover). Starring Helms, Zachary Levi, Gillian Jacobs, and a bunch of other comedy veterans, this show from Principato-Young Entertainment follows a four-inch tall private investigator as he fights crime against his fellow miniature arch-nemesis. Fall 2013.

We Need Help: Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm) and Rachael Harris (The Hangover) star as versions of themselves putting their assistant through hell. From Michael Eisner’s independent production studio Vuguru, in association with Principato-Young Entertainment, Hines and Harris also serve as the series’ creators and producers. Fall 2013.

Losing Your Virginity with John Stamos: Fall 2013. Exactly what it sounds like, sort of. Stamos (Full House, ER) interviews celebrities about their first time. The show is co-produced by Warrior Poets and executive produced by Morgan Spurlock and John Stamos. Fall 2013.

Fashion Recipe: Hosted by celebrity stylist Brett Alan Nelson, who “shows you how to get the most from one particular article of clothing.” The series will premiere later this year on Yahoo.

Cinema & Spice: Hosts Julianna Stricland and Natasha Feldman discuss films as they teach viewers new cooking skills and home decorating ideas. Debuting later this year.

Grill Girls (working title): A grilling show starring chef Megan Mitchell, who shares her grilling secrets for steaks, pizza, and even peaches.

WWE Raw Pre-Show: A 30-minute show that will air exclusively on Yahoo before World Wrestling Entertainment’s (WWE) flagship program, Monday Night Raw. Yahoo and WWE will also program live pre-shows of every WWE pay-per-view event.

Yahoo/ABC News Partnership is expanding to include online-only extensions of ABC’s TV programs like Nightline, World News with Diane Sawyer, and Good Morning America. In World News Beyond the Headlines, Diane Sawyer and a team of correspondents will provide viewers with additional news coverage of the top stories of the day. Nightline: Online will provide additional, exclusive content on topics ranging from entertainment to breaking news and international exposes. GMA Live will continue the daily Good Morning America programming for another 15 minutes, with segments like GMA Rewind, the Play of the Day, EXTRA, and Exclusive Deals.

Talking Numbers: The third series from Yahoo Finance and CNBC will debut in May. The show will highlight the best investment opportunities by analyzing stocks from “both a technical and fundamental point of view.” Yahoo Finance and CNBC’s other web programs include Off the Cuff and Big Data Download.

Marketing, Promotions, and Distribution

Regarding its comedy slate, Erin McPherson, VP & Head of Video Programming and Originals at Yahoo said: “With Burning Love, we cracked the code on scripted, serialized programming. More than 11 million people watched it on Yahoo, and another 7 million or so are watching it on E!. Seasons two and three are tracking just as well.” With that in mind, the company is looking to implement a similar strategy in developing, green-lighting, and distributing original comedy content across Yahoo platforms.

Yahoo says it will make all episodes from every show within its fall comedy lineup, which includes the previously announced The Fuzz (a puppet crime comedy from Vuguru) and Ghost Ghirls (from Shine America and Electric Dynamite), available from the very beginning.

Last week, Yahoo announced a deal with NBC Entertainment and Broadway Video to offer clips from every season of Saturday Night Live exclusively, at least for one year. Yahoo will also non-exclusively offer full episodes from next season of SNL.

Yahoo announced a partnership with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) to offer the latest wrestling clips on a dedicated hub on its website. The hub will also feature the aforementioned pre-shows, as well as an extensive video archive of WWE matches, shows, highlights, and other events.

Yahoo has inked a deal with fellow NewFront presenter Conde Nast Entertainment (CNE) to distribute CNE’s video programming. This includes dedicated video channels around CNE publishing brands like GQ and Glamour (with more to be unveiled at CNE’s NewFront later this week).
Yahoo Stream Ads: Yahoo’s foray into native advertising by allowing advertisers to embed ads into the personalized content stream on Yahoo’s homepage.

Billboard: A rich media ad at the top of the Yahoo home page, giving advertisers the opportunity to offer video and interactive elements.

Yahoo says it is offering a “new video-buying method” that combines its own topic-based video channels with its distribution partners’ video content. “We are now offering 18 categories for you to buy across,” said Erin McPherson, VP & Head of Video Programming and Originals at Yahoo.

Later – Sahil
Sahil Patel, Editor for Cynopsis Digital

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JOB OPENING: DIGITAL AD OPS COORD/NBCUniversal/NYC: Seeking an exp’d Digital Ad Ops Coordinator responsible for managing cross-platform campaigns running on MSNBC.com, NBCnews.com and Today.com. www.nbcunicareers.com. Position#9958BR (5/7)

JOB OPENING: EXECUTIVE PRODUCER/THE WEATHER CHANNEL/ATL: 8+ yrs live TV/copy edit/write/produce. 2 opngs: 1. Oversee morning programming/Network Exp a must. 3am-12pm 2. Wknd EP/cable or ntwrk bckgrnd. Apply: www.weather.com/careers (5/7)

JOB OPENING: MKTG MGR/TIME INC/NY: PEOPLE’s Digital Aud Dvlpmnt team seeking mktr to promote first suite of entry level digconsumer rev products, acquire subscribers through online mktg campaigns at cost effic ROI. 5+ yrs exp. Apply here: www.timeinc.com/careers (5/7)

JOB OPENING: PRODUCER/NYC: 5+ yrs exp-Branded Entertainment. Oversee creative, execution, project mngmnt. Need to have creative, multitasking, orgnz’tl & client skills. Must have prior prod exp. [email protected] (5/7)

JOB OPENING: BRANDED ENTERTAINMENT ADMIN ASST/NYC: for Pres of division. Resp include: phones, scheduling, expenses, errands, travel and creative dvlpmnt. Must be detail oriented and organized. [email protected] (5/7)

JOB OPENING: AE, DIGITAL MEDIA TRAINING/NYC: Seeking AE with 2+ yrs. exp. in TV, Radio, Print or digital space to sell digital sales training programs. Apply to: [email protected] (5/7)

JOB OPENING: SALES PLANNER/THE WEATHER CHANNEL/NYC & LA: Partner w/ ACCT MGR to dvlp Sales Strategy for TWC Media Solutions advertisers/prospects. Cable Sales Planning Exp, Strong excel knwlg req’d as well as VC!/MediaMath. Resumes to: [email protected] (5/7)

JOB OPENING: VP, CREATIVE DIRECTOR/Comedy Central/NYC: Leading creative brainstorming sessions with CC SVP, Editorial Director, Art Director and producers. BA Deg & 7-10 yrs writing/prod/shooting exp. Apply here (5/7)

JOB OPENING: SR WRITER-PRODUCER/DISNEY XD/BURBANK: min 7 yrs exp write/produce spots. Creative Leader. Comic idea machine/lead/manage multi projects/Direct VO talent and field crews www.disneycareers.com REQ 90147 (5/4)

JOB OPENING: POST PROD /MNGR TECH SRVCS/HIT/NYC: Mng team servicing all prgrmng content for brdcst, Home Entertainment, Web, IP. Knwldg of post prod, DVD, Dubbing, HE mastering. Strong mngt & budgeting skills. www.Mattel.com/careers.com (5/4)

JOB OPENING: ANALYST-ADV PLATFORM/AMCN/NYC: coord meta data & non-video assets for syndication across all platforms,QC content deliverables, 1+yr exp in data/info mgmt CLICK HERE (5/4)

JOB OPENING: SCHEDULING COORD/WETV/NYC: accurate, timely input of all schedules & content related data, track viewer inquiries, conduct competitive analysis. CLICK HERE (5/4)

JOB OPENING: DESIGN DIR/REELZ/Albuquerque: Lead & manage design team. Oversee brand mgmt, creative direction for on-air, print & web. Mng all of phases of creative work. 5+yrs exp. Apply: [email protected] (5/4)

JOB OPENING: MGR COMMUNICATIONS/NBCUniversal/NYC: Generate publicity for Bravo programming. 3-5 yrs comm exp pitchng, bookng & coverng media intvs. Exp workng w/talent. Reality exp strongly preferd. www.nbcunicareers.com (9819BR) (5/3)

JOB OPENING: CUSTOMER ACQUISITION MGR/FANDANGO/LA: Oversee all aspects of srch engine mktg, affil mktg & various other direct response mktg initiatives. 4+ yrs exp mngng acquisition mktg campaigns. Apply here (5/2)

JOB OPENING: LOYALTY & RETENTION MKTG MGR/FANDANGO/LA: Partner with Dir, Digital Mktg to dvlp segmentation contact and offer strategies that increase customer engagement and retention. Ba DEG 4+yrs exp consumer mktg. Apply here (5/2)

JOB OPENING: SOCIAL MEDIA MKTG MGR/FANDANGO/LA: Implement social media strategy and best practices across various platforms and social communities. Ba deg and 4-6 yrs mktg exp Demonstrated passion for social meda a must. Apply here (5/2)

JOB OPENING: MGR, CONSUMER INSIGHTS/LA/E! and Esquire Network: 5+ years’ experience in primary research, utilize primary and secondary research tools to generate insights that impact the business. http://tinyurl.com/cdvb228 (5/2)

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JOB OPENING: SR.MNGR/MNGR, BRAND & CREATIVE STGY/CHARTER/STAMFORD, CT: Develop & execute ad cmpgns. Strong prjct mgmnt skills 4+ yrs Agency or Client exp. Ability 2 work in nibble envrnmnt. Kwldg of TV prod a plus; Apply: www.charter.com (5/2)

JOB OPENING: AD SALES PLANNER/NUVOtv/NY: Freelance-support/asst. Ad Sales dept. 2+ yrs exp. req. Analytical, Excel and comm. skills req. Industry & Dealmaker exp+. Resume to: [email protected] EOE (5/2)

JOB OPENING:  SALES PLANNER/Screenvision/NYC: Sales acct management support, sales reporting, campaign tracking, Need BS+3yrs media exp, strong excel. Apply at www.screenvision.com (5/2)

JOB OPENING: POST SUPER/Jupiter Ent./NYC: Hire/schedule/manage post for multiple series. Oversee workflow/output, communicate w networks&senior mgmt. 5+ yrs in post, mgmt. exp. Resume: [email protected] (5/1)

JOB OPENING: MANAGING EDITOR SPORTS MEDIA/THE WHISTLE/NYC: Experienced multimedia editor to lead digital team for creation of daily editorial agenda & content development for teens sports brand. Resume: [email protected] (5/1)

INTERNSHIPS – These positions are for credit only – nobody gets paid here. These ads are always posted for free, and students work for school credit only. For more information on the specs for posting an Internship ad, email Trish at [email protected].

SUMMER INTERNSHIP CREDITS ONLY: FILM DVLPMNT INTERNS/Hyperion Media Group Culver City, CA. Looking for 3 to 4ppl. 3 or 4 days/wk. Requirements: Very orgnzd, great verbal/written skills. Word/excel knwlg.  Email: [email protected] (5/3)

SUMMER INTERNSHIP CREDITS ONLY: PROD INTERN/ATLANTA: We are looking for crazy good interns for the Summer semester. Able to work during the core hours of 10am-5pm two-to-four days per week. Email resume to: [email protected] (5/3)

SITUATION WANTED ADS, POSTED BY THOSE LOOKING TO BE HIRED… There is no charge for placing your Situation Wanted ad… for more information contact Trish Pihonak at [email protected].

E-mail [email protected] or call Trish Pihonak at 888.702.3858 for rates and specs for Job Openings.

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