The United States of Integrated Marketing

Last night I saw an episode of an upcoming cable television show in my local movie theater.  The lead character is played by an actress I have enjoyed in movies in the past so I thought I would go to the screening despite being the wrong “demographic”.   I do not have cable and average less than 5 hours of television a week.   When I want to watch cable, I go to the gym! 

The television show was disappointing and slightly disturbing.  The experience itself was wholely unsatisfying.  Once the episode aired, the lights came on and that was it.  No one wanted to know what the assembled audience thought.  There was no mechanism to provide feedback.  I was left wondering why the cable channel bothered.  If this wasn’t an opportunity for market research, perhaps it was part of a viral campaign?  If so, it worked.  I have told two friends how terribly disappointing and unfunny I found the show to be. 

I have since read that an integrated campaign to introduce the show included more than just screening episodes of the show at movie theaters in major markets.  The first episode is available on websites like YouTube and on some mobile phones.  Since I went to a screening, I am surprised that I needed to find this out using Google.  While I applaud the use of multiple channels and delivery devices, more integration could have been done.  Why not let the audience at the movie theater know about additional ways to view the first episode?  Why not enable viewers to take an on-line test to determine which personality featured in the show best fits them?  At a minimum the channel could have informed the audience at the screening I attended when the first episode would air.


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