CBS bubbling over Pepsi video-in-print ad

Campaign features 40 minutes of content for fall schedule

In a bid to generate maximum buzz leading into the fall TV season, Omnicom's OMD has paired two of its clients -- CBS and Pepsi -- with a new technology that brings iPod-quality video to a print advertising and promotional campaign touting CBS' new lineup and Pepsi's diet drink Pepsi Max.


 
The technology, from Los Angeles-based Americhip, features a paper-thin interactive video player. It is being unveiled in an insert packaged with a co-branded ad that will appear in Entertainment Weekly's annual fall TV preview issue dated Sept. 18.

The video offers 40 minutes of promotional content for CBS' new schedule and a spot for Pepsi Max.

In addition to the EW insert, the campaign features promo spots and Pepsi ads on CBS, online and outdoor promotions and several events, including college campus screenings and a Hollywood premiere party. The campaign ties the CBS and Pepsi brands together with the tagline "CBS Monday to the Max" as it focuses on the network's male-skewing Monday night comedy lineup. Pepsi Max is marketed as a diet soft drink for men.

CBS and OMD executives said the multimillion-dollar campaign is the first to use video in a print ad. While the co-branded ad will appear in all editions of EW, the video player insert will be mailed to subscribers just in the Los Angeles and New York markets. The video insert will not appear on newsstands.

For CBS, the goal is "getting our samples into the hands of more TV enthusiasts," said George Schweitzer, president of the CBS Marketing Group. "The best way to sample our new programs is to see previews and it's never been accomplished in a print ad, until now."

Frank Cooper, CMO, portfolio brands for Pepsi-Cola North America Beverages, said the brand wants to be associated with the latest marketing and cultural trends. The new technology, coupled with CBS' Monday night core audience of males 25-39, and the pop-culture focus of EW combined to make the project "feel like a great fit," he added.

The cast of "The Big Bang Theory" introduces the video, which automatically begins playing when the insert is opened. Readers can then select from among five buttons to view promos of "How I Met Your Mother," "Two and a Half Men," a comedic Pepsi Max spot, the new comedy "Accidentally on Purpose," or CBS' new fall dramas.
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