NewFronts: AwesomenessTV Orders Thriller Series Starring Lia Marie Johnson, Scripted MLB Project
The company's Awestruck network for millennial moms has signed GloZell Green and Molly Sims.
AwesomenessTV used its NewFronts platform to tout the thing it's done best the last four years: using its network of social native talent to develop programming for a variety of screens.
While "millennial" is a common buzzword at NewFronts, ATV CEO Brian Robbins explained to the room of marketers that his company is more focused on Gen Z, those kids in their late teens who are finding freedom and, as Robbins noted, "have their parents' money."
But ATV isn't just targeting these teens on social and online platforms. The company is also reaching them via traditional TV channels, streaming services and feature-length films. Throughout the presentation, Robbins highlighted the various platforms that ATV talent lives, including go90 (the app from ATV minority owner Verizon), Hulu and iTunes.
All told, ATV makes over 800 hours of content a year, a number Robbins said is "probably more than most cable networks."
On the ATV roster this year are new seasons of Royal Crush, a YouTube series starring Meg DeAngelis produced in partnership with Royal Caribbean, and Guidance about a guidance counselor investigating a grading scandal. Also on deck is t@gged, a psychological thriller starring Lia Marie Johnson, Lulu Antariksa and Katelyn Nacon, and a scripted series produced with Major League Baseball.
Yes, ATV is focused on Gen Z, but the company has also started to expand into new demographic with Awestruck, a network geared toward millennial moms that recently signed influencers Molly Sims, GloZell Green and others.
"Traditional media companies and brands are failing to reach them in ways they're actually consuming," said president Brett Bouttier, adding that "today nearly all new moms are millennial. They have enormous spending power and they're spending an average of six hours a day on their mobile phones, where they discover and watch a lot of social video."
The DreamWorks Animation-owned digital studio has avoided the NewFronts in the past, but Bouttier told The Hollywood Reporter that the market had matured enough for the company to want to bring its pitch to advertisers through this platform.
Other announcements made during the presentation — which featured appearances by Tyler Oakley and other YouTube stars — included live event Kids' Game Awards from DreamWorksTV, the launch of an ATV app on the Apple TV, an integration with chat service Kik, and a partnership with ZEFR that will help it create custom content for brands.
ATV executives — minus DWA CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg — made these announcements while also avoiding a few common NewFronts announcements. When Robbins joked that the company would not announce a virtual reality project, the audience (many of whom are on their eighth day of NewFronts pitches) cheered.