Media Buyers Dissect Paramount’s Content Focused Upfronts

Media Buyers Dissect Paramount’s Content Focused Upfronts
B&T Magazine
Edited by B&T Magazine

In light of Paramount’s Upfronts yesterday, B&T has secured two media buyers to share their take on what Paramount is offering.

Peter Grose, the head of the marketplace at Wavemaker, discussed his excitement at the content-heavy focus.

Grose’s take.

The 2023 Paramount upfronts solidified the company’s position as a global entertainment leader and were unashamedly content-led.

The presentation focussed on reinforcing the benefits of the ownership structure under Paramount by showcasing the brands, platforms, channels, content, and financial stability that this brings. I felt the presentation was able to balance all these elements while not detracting from the unique personality and humour of the 10 brands that still shone through as strong as ever.

The content schedule for 2023 provides a consistent balance of proven tentpoles as well as new programming across 52 weeks bookended by the new revamped Bachelor in January and Dessert Masters in Q4. From a new content standpoint, I am really interested to see how the genre-bending “The Challenge Australia” resonates with audiences as it really is unlike anything on FTA TV in Australia.

The new products, such as Innovid and Samba TV, were only touched on briefly; however, all look to further strengthen the company’s ability to better target and measure audience across devices. The new product “The Checkout” as part of Paramount’s global partnership with Twitter could be a real game changer for Brands, providing yet another platform to integrate with content and leverage this directly into an E-Commerce environment.

There is a huge demand in the market for more and more premium video platforms for Advertisers, and the announcement of Pluto TV was incredibly exciting. I can’t wait to hear more information about the launch plans.

Anthony Sciacca, the head of the marketplace at MediaCom, shared with B&T his excitement about the shake-ups Paramount is offering.

Sciacca’s take.

Paramount’s 2023 upfronts delivered the all-familiar hybrid event, both in-person at the ICC and live-streamed. They revealed a varied content slate, and new technology partnerships showcased within the new look Paramount ecosystem with some fresh shake-ups, balanced with familiarity for audiences.

All in all, it was very content-focused, with some strategic shake-ups to the slate and some exciting tech product partnerships and innovation.

It was really clear that, as Jarrod Villani claimed, they “are no longer just Ten” and under the Paramount banner (10, Peach, Bold, Shake, 10Play, 10Sport, Paramount +, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr, MTV & Pluto TV) it will enable them to bring global, local.  This was a good move and enhanced the opportunity for brands to extend beyond just linear / BVOD.

Beverly McGarvey explained that they have moved to focus Paramount on driving social change, and this was highlighted through the action done both on and off the screen, including their commitment to diversity, equality & inclusion.

It linked well through the new vision “We see tomorrow” delivered through sustainability and actions already implemented in their business – announcement of the Sustainable Screens Australia partnership helping reduce their carbon footprint for the planet and our production industry, ensuring “there are productions for tomorrow”. Something which for MediaCom is more important than ever to our clients and us.

The content was the major focus, and Paramount are renowned for shaking things up from a content front, announcing an emphasis on personalised prime time, refreshing loved formats, and showcasing new obsessions across H1.

The biggest shake-up was the timing for key tentpoles across Q1, with the Bachelors strategically running ahead of the competing love reality formats, resulting in I’m a Celebrity shifting to Easter, allowing for a balance of the new formats with the tried and tested formats – Survivor, Masterchef (that has worked for them).

Personally, I welcome and am excited by this shake-up to the Q1 slate, and it will be interesting to see the battle of the love reality heat up over the summer, though audiences have become familiar to seeing Dr Chris & Julia on their screens across January, so it will be critical for Paramount to maintain this excitement post Survivor.

Paramount announced some exciting new product innovations & partnerships with Innovid, KERV, Samba TV & Twitter. However, the room was left wanting more details.

The most exciting announcement of the day was the launch of The Checkout commerce product.  This is something the market has demanded, enabling brands a seamless commerce experience to watch, tweet & shop all from the couch.

Paramount’s reality slate helps position them as the cultural centre for young Aussies, and with the Checkout product providing real-time connection between what the audience sees on 10 / 10PLAY and is talking about, it’s a great move!

Pluto TV was a major announcement, officially launching in 2023 on 10PLAY.   This is exciting,  providing clients with opportunities to reach new audiences and compete with other new streaming platforms in the AU market.

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Anthony Sciacca Paramount Peter Grose

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