Success Story: Quiz Show Scores in Cleveland

Oct 6, 2003  •  Post A Comment

With the help of one sponsor, Scripps Howard Broadcasting’s ABC affiliate WEWS-TV in Cleveland is bringing back a popular program after a four-year hiatus.
“Academic Challenge,” a game show in which high-schoolers compete against each other academically, will start airing in December, thanks to Westfield Insurance, which has committed to sponsor the half-hour for the next three years.
“The sponsor gets a promotional announcement and great publicity,” said General Sales Manager Jim Rini. “They also receive four commercials within the show and an introduction by the [Westfield Insurance] president at the beginning of the program.”
Others will have an opportunity to purchase spots during a special half-hour pre-show that will look back at the show’s history. “We’ve had some [now-] famous people on the show,” Mr. Rini said, “like George Stephanopoulos and Leon Harris from CNN.”
WKYC-TV, the NBC affiliate owned by Gannett Broadcasting, is the official home of the Cleveland Browns and as a result has several sports-related opportunities for advertisers.
There is a show hosted by the Browns’ coach, “Inside the Huddle With Butch Davis,” every Monday night. Coors Light was the sponsor of the three preseason shows. “McDonald’s Browns Tonight,” a sports recap show, is sponsored by the hamburger chain.
At the station’s Web site, www.wkyc.com, Wendy’s sponsors a sports trivia section and has a tie-in with the news.
“Our biggest push this time of year is all Browns,” Mr. Rini said. “The next big push will be the Olympics.”
Between 2001 and 2002 ad revenue for the Cleveland TV market increased 5 percent to $258.8 million, according to the BIA Financial Network. By year-end 2003 it should be up to $267.9 million, according to the Chantilly, Va.-based investment firm.