BET Presents New Broadband Site, Ad-Friendly Slate of Shows

Apr 25, 2006  •  Post A Comment

BET introduced an advertiser-friendly approach and a new broadband Web site at its upfront presentation Monday night.

Using the theme, “Whatever, Whenever, Wherever,” BET executives promised advertisers more opportunities to reach African American consumers over TV, the and Internet and through a new program called “Touch BET” that will create opportunities for marketers to sponsor more local events. The network also pitched a slate of shows designed for product integration.

The new broadband site, called BET on Blast will feature original content, clips and behind-the-scenes video from current shows, music and news. It will have four channels: The Tube, Music, Info and Flicks.

BET Entertainment President Reginald Hudlin introduced a full slate of shows that take in entertainment, music, news and sports. The shows will be scheduled “in short cycles” for maximum impact, he said.

The new programs include: “Next Level: Vince Young,” showing the Rose Bowl-winning University of Texas quarterback preparing for the NFL draft; Star Time: Keyshia Cole,” following the 21-year old singer on her first tour, with Kanye West and R. Kelly; “American Gangster,” looking at the rise and fall of African American crime figures; “Beef: the Series” looking at feuds in the hip-hop community; “The Black Carpet,” an entertainment news show; “Hot Girls,” following women’s adventures at cool events; “The Iron Ring,” an ultimate fighting show with celebrity managers; and “Black Book Diaries,” a late-night erotica anthology told from a woman’s perspective.

Mr. Hudlin also said BET is developing a group of shows as branded entertainment vehicles that will go on the air once they find sponsors. For example: “College Hill-Summer Interns” would feature college students in a house that could be near the headquarters of the sponsor. The students would work on a marketing campaign for the sponsor’s brand. Other branded entertainment concepts include “1 More Chance,” created and hosted by Queen Latifah, featuring former stars looking to make a comeback; “Step Up,” a competition among fraternities; “Riders,” following a celebrity race cross-country; and “Sunday Best,” an “American Idol”-like show searching for a Gospel star.