Land Rover & Internet TV

futurelab default header

by: Josh Hawkins

Young & Rubicam have launched a broadband video channel for Land Rover called Go Beyond TV.

Original programming on the broadband channel includes short segments focusing on adventure sports, travel destinations, and interviews with the likes of Lance Armstrong. The content is well produced and fairly entertaining, a mix of old and new (one of the segments had a copyright of 2003).  

With brands pushing hard to find new applications for TV advertising dollars, this form of branded entertainment will become more popular. Internet TV offers the entertainment value of television with the measurability of online marketing.

Aside from simply re-purposing video content for broadband distribution, many brands like Land Rover are pursuing ambitious plans to leverage uniquely social aspects of Internet-based media experiences. For example, last week's Brandweek reports that Land Rover will migrate this video content to a stand alone website where visitors can submit and access consumer generated media. The editor of the Land Rover broadband channel explains, "Go Beyond TV seeks to foster an online 'community' wherein spectators can start uploading their own adventures." Each video segment currently featured on the site offers viewers the ability to "send to a friend."  

After spending some time on the website, I wonder if the community-building vision outlined by the channel editor will actually come to fruition, or if it's simply a healthy bit of lip service.  For example, even the "send to a friend" feature includes a link to a website that drops people on a "coming soon…" page at The actual copy included in the email reads: "Go and see this site, it's really good! Go Beyond TV. You'll love it! This is very cool. from Josh Hawkins."  Seems like more of an afterthought than anything else.

But the overall intentions of Land Rover's program are spot on.  It makes sense to empower customer evangelists with a destination and toolset to share brand experiences and video content that captures key value dimensions. What's more, peer-driven communications resonate much more than interruptive advertising and traditional buckshot marketing.  It will be interesting to see if Land Rover has the stamina to stick with the program and provide the resources required to grow a community and aggregate niche demand. At present, the broadband channel remains buried in the official Land Rover website, unexposed to search engines, with sloppy and half-hearted features intended for viral promotion. 

Original Post: