Mark Burnett, BBC America Launch McDonald’s Network, McTV
NEW YORK - Want some fries and television with that burger?
Fast-food giant McDonald's plans to launch a TV network in its restaurants with local news, sports, movie and TV show previews, entertainment features and human interest stories, the LA Times reported.
Mark Burnett's Vimby, a digital production company that uses a network of filmmakers in 40 cities to create original Web programming, BBC America and KABC-TV Eyewitness News are among its content partners, it said.
The McDonald's Channel, a digital network, will include programming customized to local communities and roll out over the coming months. ChannelPort Communications, an entertainment, tech and brand management firm that is behind the move, expects the network to reach 18 million-20 million people a month.
"People today are using our restaurants differently than they have in the past," a McDonald's USA spokeswoman told the Times. "They've become more of a destination. With McDonald's restaurants offering Wi-Fi, we've become more relevant and contemporary."
"While they're in line getting their hamburger there is no escape," Allen Adamson, a managing partner of Landor Associates, a brand building company, told the Times. In-store networks are "one of the last bastions where you have a captive audience."
Two 42- to 46-inch HD TV screens visible from 70 percent of eating areas will be placed in participating McDonald's location, according to the Times. Audio will be heard from the screen or ceiling speakers. There will also be "quiet zones" in the restaurants.
Programming will run in a one-hour cycle and include "The McDonald's Achievers," profiles of local high school and college athletes, "Mighty Moms," about local mothers balancing home life and careers, "McDonald's Channel Music News" and fashion, art, music, nightlife, lifestyle and culture news from Burnett's Vimby, the Times said.
About eight minutes an hour will be focused on advertising, with McDonald's ads limited to a minute and a half, it said.