Yesterday, Paramount hosted its upfronts at its studios in Pyrmont, Sydney. In a world where TV upfronts usually take the form of confetti-covered stage shows, Paramount’s intimate affair offered agencies something different and allowed for a level of intimacy and interactiveness that was “refreshing”.
For Rebecca Ho, Sydney’s head of investment at Starcom, Paramount is focussing firmly on its strengths this year.
“Paramount’s intimate approach to their upfronts was refreshing, energetic and truly captured their optimism towards the evolution of their business model as we move into 2024. Their overarching strategy provided reassurance that they are very much focused on their strengths,” she said.
“Paramount’s strategy was clear and leveraging their historical successes is key, as they know where their strengths lie. They are not afraid to introduce new content and capabilities to the Australia market and I hope they accomplish what they set out to achieve.”
Its global roots allow it to better reach a family audience, she added.
“As a globally led business, Paramount’s investment into premium international and local content offers viewers a breadth of choice across their multi-platform ecosystem. This provides advertisers with the opportunity to reach different generations and diverse audiences – from kids, to comedy and light-hearted fun. Paramount’s ambition to start the year with strong momentum is driven by their introduction of new genres and format types to attract audiences of all ages. Gladiators, the Julia Morris and Robert Irwin duo on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here and Top Gear Australia are key to their fast start”.
Like other media owners, Paramount continues to focus on personalisation, she said.
“Across the upfronts season, personalisation continues to be a core theme, and this was no different for Paramount. Their investment into technology to improve user experiences, drive higher engagement and measure the impact of TV will allow advertisers to reach more relevant customers and attribute performance to business metrics”.
For Sasko Bosilkovski, investment director at Carat the Q&A session was a particular highlight of the upfronts.
“The Paramount Upfronts was an intimate session providing an opportunity for Q&A with smaller groups with Dentsu and Havas”.
The network’s content suite with give it “momentum” as it goes into 2024 he said.
“It was great to get an in-depth feel of returning fan favourites, brand-new lineups, and some cherished classics waiting to be discovered by a new generation of fans hitting the various screens and platforms in 2024. In Q1 2024 we see the return of Gladiators 90s nostalgia and it will be interesting to see how it delivers for them as it takes on the Summer of sport, which is then followed by Survivor Australia into, I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here then into the Australian Formula One Grand Prix which will hopefully gain some momentum for Paramount”.
He was happy that the Q&A segment allowed Paramount to address the “lack of sport”.
“In the two-way conversation, the lack of sport on the Network was brought up and how they will compete with the other Networks and Paramount were happy with the sporting on the Network with having the Formula One, A-League, Melbourne Cup, A-League and live streaming coverage of the Matildas and Socceroos games”.
Finally, Bosilkovski said the network is confidentally stepping into 2024.
“In the end, Paramount is confidently stepping into 2024 with a more solid and consistent lineup than ever before, the opportunity to engage younger viewers and hard-to-reach audiences with premium content, and a variety of fresh, intriguing new ad tech prospects.”