Katie Couric’s career as a digital storyteller continues: She’s been tapped to host “#SeeHer Story,” an inspirational weekly digital series spotlighting “often-overlooked women” for People magazine.
The show is part of parent company Meredith’s slate of seven new shows centered around the #SeeHer movement, an initiative launched by the Association of National Advertisers to promote accurate representations of girls and women in media. Meredith — which completed the acquisition of Time Inc. last year — made the announcements Thursday at its Digital Content NewFronts event in New York at its downtown Manhattan offices.
“I’m excited to partner with Meredith and People to inspire the next generation of young female leaders by telling the real and impactful stories of so many amazing women,” Couric said in a statement. “You know what they say: If you can see her, you can be her.”
Meredith didn’t announce a premiere date for “#SeeHer Story”; a rep said it’s pegged to debut in late summer or early fall 2019. The series will be distributed across all of People’s outlets, including the free PeopleTV online streaming network, people.com, and social-media platforms.
From 2013-17, Couric served as Yahoo’s “global news anchor,” hosting a regular interview series, and before that had a long career in TV including anchoring “CBS Evening News” and 15 years as co-host of NBC’s “Today.” Among other projects, she edits a daily newsletter, “Wake-Up Call,” through her Katie Couric Media shingle.
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Meredith’s #SeeHer slate — catering to its female-skewing audiences — also includes InStyle’s “#SeeHer Style,” which will profile notable women leading up to New York Fashion Week this fall, and “Badass Women” Season 2, a digital companion series to the mag’s monthly print and digital feature. In addition, InStyle is establishing a $30,000 scholarship program for young women.
Others in the #SeeHer lineup include Parents’ “Moms Mean Business,” about working moms; Health’s “#SeeHer Wellness Warriors”; Rachael Ray Every Day’s “Like a Boss,” about female leaders in the culinary field; and Shape’s “Goal Crushers,” profiling women who have taken on big challenges for even greater causes.
Meredith also detailed other new programming across its portfolio of 40-plus brands, including People, Better Homes & Gardens, InStyle, Shape, Parents, Martha Stewart Living, EatingWell and Food & Wine. (Meredith has sold Fortune and Time magazine, and it’s seeking a buyer for Sports Illustrated and Money.)
The company said it is doubling down on what it dubs the “three Rs of celebrity”: red carpet, reality and royals. New shows in this category will run across the company’s owned-and-operated destinations, including PeopleTV, as well as social media platforms including Twitter.
According to Meredith, the PeopleTV OTT service will triple its red-carpet coverage beyond awards shows to cover movie premieres, film festivals and other events. PeopleTV’s new talk show “Reality Check” (Monday-Thursday) is hosted by Lyndsey Rodrigues (“TRL”), who will lead a panel of reality TV stars, super-fans and entertainment journalists to chat about the genre’s latest developments. “Reality Check” is slated to premiere Monday, May 13.
Meredith also said it has a slate of 20 shows for Instagram’s IGTV vertical-video platform. Fifteen of those have already gone live, including Real Simple’s “Beauty on the Move” and Martha Stewart Living’s “Frosted,” which to date have garnered more than 20 million views, according to the company. Upcoming IGTV shows include Parents magazine’s “How I Mom,” starring actress Tiffani Thiessen.
Jon Werther, president of Meredith National Media Group, touted the company’s first-party data to glean insights into consumer trends and its ability to leverage technologies including voice, artificial intelligence and ecommerce to support its advertising biz.
“Our mission is to anticipate our consumers’ needs — particularly those of the 110 million women we serve — to inspire and fuel their imagination and to empower them to achieve as they make their everyday decisions,” Werther said.