ADVERTISERS GET INVOLVED IN THEIR OWN PROGRAM PRODUCTION
Advertisers are becoming more involved in production and
development of shows for network TV and syndication, according to
the current BUSINESS WEEK. Procter & Gamble recently signed a
three-year deal with Paramount, and Wendy's is supporting
production of "Derby," a two-hour movie to be aired in June.
Television Production Partners is a consortium of nine major
advertisers, including AT&T, Campbell's, Coca-Cola, Coors,
McDonald's, GM, Reebok, Clorox, and Sears, that will develop
"movies, specials, and limited run series." Each advertiser
"chooses which programs it wants to be involved in and takes a
portion of the commercial spots." Television Production Partners
were behind "Hank Aaron: Chasing a Dream" -- a special that aired
recently on TBS (Zachary Schiller, BUSINESS WEEK, 5/22).
THE HOT SEASON: TV networks are experiencing one of their
most profitable sales seasons since the late 1980's, according to
David Lieberman of USA TODAY. Prices are up more than 10% and
advertisers' TV budgets are up as much as 25% over last year.
The sale process for the '95-96 season begins today and by July
4, networks will "sell more than $4B in prime-time ads." Some
reasons for strong sales include the competition in the
computers, movie, and long distance telephone industries, and
advertisers' desires to to associate with the '96 Olympics (USA