The Discovery Upfront 2012 was a very informative and exciting event. General Managers from all of Discovery’s properties (Military, Science, Animal Planet, TLC, Velocity, etc.) were on hand to give a little taste of what 2011 brought us, what 2012 is shaping up to be, and what 2013 holds for us.
While there are a lot of recognizable shows still on the networks, they continue to explore new programming. “I must know too much about auto racing,” said Julie Becker, Media Buyer at DirayTV. “When Velocity introduced their new reality series by announcing the arrival of a 4th well known actor/race car driver (Steve McQueen, James Garner, Paul Newman are the other 3), I knew it was Patrick Dempsey.”
“One part that I found particularly interesting was the push to get advertisers more involved with Discovery’s new web series,” said Ryan Campbell, Media Buyer at DirayTV. “It seems to be that everything is becoming more interactive now and the advertisers that get in on the ground floor stand to reap the benefits,” he added. “These web series will allow the viewer to become more involved with their favorite shows on the Discovery Networks.”
One big announcement was a new network, Destination America, which starts Memorial Day weekend and is replacing Planet Green. The network is going to focus solely on America, American traditions, the spirit of the country through travel shows, cooking shows, the Wild West, etc. “I think it’s going to be a great addition for us and I think it’s going to attract an excellent demo/target audience for our products!” said Marci Leary, Media Buyer at DirayTV. “Destination America will focus its programming on anything from gold exploration history to the history of fast food restaurants to chili cook-offs across the country.”
This is the second year in a row that Discovery Communications has lead the pact as the number one cable network for original content. With more original series coming across all of Discovery’s networks, the opportunities for advertisers to reach their target demo’s seems to be endless. “I was impressed by the growth of the Discovery brand,” said Julie. “The comparison they showed vs. the broadcast networks was very interesting. It really shows how cable has become such a mainstay in our lives and our viewing.”
“The after party was a blast,” said Ryan. Talent from many of Discovery’s shows were on hand, ready to meet and greet from Niecy Nash to Jeremy Wade (River Monsters) to Susan Lucci and Tori Spelling. “All of them were very inviting and willing to take pictures and have a chat,” Ryan added. “All I remember is McDreamy and Dave Salmoni…” Marci said, with her never-ending smile. “Also, the host of Trigger on Discovery Military, Wil Willis, is hot!”