E! News, the entertaining entertainment update long associated with the cable network with which it shares its name, wants users to think a little harder about speed and, perhaps, focus less on accessing it via TV.
Over the past twenty months, executives at the NBCUniveral-owned outlet have placed more of a digital emphasis on its news operations, hoping that fans of the regular “E! News” program and website will take note of the fact that they can get the celebrity info it dispenses across social media, mobile devices and video on demand, too. On Monday, the network is rolling out a new promotional effort designed to call attention to its evolving digital outreach.
“We are starting to focus on where our audience is,” said Jennifer Neal, executive vice president of marketing for E!, in an interview.
Ads slated to appear on billboards on online will urge both E! News aficionados and potential new adherents to “Be Pop Cultured,” and use entertainment-news trivia and tidbits to capture their interest. The promotions will turn up on billboards in highly trafficked areas including Sunset Blvd. in Los Angeles and on the world’s largest billboard in New York’s Times Square, as well as through ads with digital media companies including BuzzFeed and Refinery29.
Many E! fans are likely familiar with the cable network’s long-running news program, which has featured hosts ranging from Steve Kmetko to Ryan Seacrest to Giuliana Rancic to Maria Menounos. But the network has recently taken some of the streaming-video E! News programming made for its web site and redeveloped it for Facebook Live. “Live From E!” is an interactive live weekday show made for the venue. “E! News Now,” meanwhile, is a short-form news series produced for broadband and mobile outlets.
More is on the way. The network launched “TV Therapy” for Facebook Live on August 8, and has plans to, by early September, have an original show airing every weeknight. The live shows are also being tailored for other venues such as YouTube and Periscope and are expected to be made available by early autumn. On September 8, a weekly Snapchat series is scheduled to start.
The key to the campaign, said Neal, is that each ad is tailored for the audience expected to see it. An ad for E! News slated to appear on the web site of Paper Magazine will read, “This is where Kim broke the internet. Be Pop Cultured,” a nod to the publication’s cover photo featuring Kim Kardashian. Ads appearing around NBCU’s 30 Rockefeller Center headquarters in New York may use lines referencing Tina Fey, who starred in the insider satire “30 Rock.