Soap Operas to Branded Original Programming

I was mindlessly listening to commercials in the background the other day when something caught my attention, “Only available on DirecTV.” Something a bit mundane, but when I looked up it was a commercial for original programming that can only be seen on DirecTV. I have ambiently noticed this trend with both Netflix and Hulu creating niche specific original programming, all of which set off by HBO’s successes with shows like the Soprano’s, Sex in the City, etc. all of which trying to capture viewers for subscription or advertising revenue (it always comes down to the bottom line).

This brought me to think about the development and penetration of TV programming itself. Soap Operas, spawning on radio in the 1930’s and quickly taking over television in the 1960’s, were produced and sponsored by Proctor & Gamble in order to capture audience attention to, in theory, sell soap; hence “Soap” Operas. This amazing little history leads me to question, where do brands fit into the trend of segmenting original programming to capture, niche audiences?

The permeation of multiple channels allows for a brand to generate content that is valuable to each viewer; all while more and more internet users are utilizing the power of the web to fulfill their entertainment needs with more episode streaming through a Hulu or Netflix. These trends are converging together to create a hotbed of opportunity for brands. With the advertising power they have, the relationships and social permeation they are generating on the web, and the growing need for online entertainment, brands can now safely begin creating “Branded Original Programing” much like the “Soap Operas” of generations past.

Leading to a consumer watching a long-form video, sponsored and produced by a brand…

As information overload is continuing to plague our society in 140 characters or less, brands now have a distinct opportunity to entertain and capture attention through original, episodic video, much like the Soap Operas in the past. Leading to a consumer watching a long-form video, sponsored and produced by a brand…


Photo courtesy of Flickr – Rantes


connect with blackwhalegroup

Choose how you'd like to read our industry leading content, whether you tweet, "like", subscribe, or watch.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply