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Multiple Pain Points: PromaxBDA Conference Explores The Challenges of Marketing TV Series

The PromaxBDA conference, which is coming up on Tuesday in Los Angeles, highlights just how challenging marketing TV shows has become these days.


Once upon a time, the playing field was pretty level in the sense that there was a stable media environment: People turned on the TV after dinner and left it on until 11PM (10, if they lived in the Midwest.) They watched one of the three major networks and if you wanted to drive tune-in for your new prime-time series, you ran a promo during prime time. Sure there were billboards and print ads and transit posters and all, but promos and PR were the way to go.

Compare that to today’s landscape, where marketers need to navigate a range of outlets, from social media platforms to online to mobile to time-shifted television all in the hopes of chasing a rapidly-moving target called “tune-in,” that may or may not happen at the time the show is first aired and may or may not carry the same commercial load.

Changing viewing habits are hard enough, but then there’s social media, with different platforms playing different roles for different demographics and the marketing team having to make sense of it all while trying to get actors, writers, producers and showrunners to play along. Or at the very least, contribute the occasional tweet.


New platforms like Snapchat make the game even harder, as not only does the marketing team have to get itself up to speed, they’ve then got to go and convince the network executives that the platform is worth spending money on.

PromaxBDA runs for three days (Tuesday-Wednesday-Thursday) at the JW Marriott in downtown L.A. The actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt will be delivering the opening keynote speech. Other featured speakers include Viacom’s Doug Herzog, comedian Tig Notaro, and producer Greg Berlanti, Many of the panels will focus on the challenges of marketing television and other entertainment properties and what to look for in the future.

In what promises to be one of the more popular panels, the Truth Company’s Linda Ong, Hulu’s Jim O’Donnell, TV[R]EV Founder Jesse Redniss, and Giant Spoon’s Alan Cohen will join moderator Frank Radice to explore the latest industry buzzwords and what they mean. Look for some great infographics on here all week around that topic.


Badges are still available from the PromaxBDA website.


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