by: Karl Long
In another nail in the coffin of network television Anheuser-Busch has just announced it will be launching Bud.tv in February ‘07. Bud.tv will be an online entertainment channel that will blend professionally produced content, news, sports and consumer generated content.
Oh, and this is not a lame, me-too toe dipping into social media either, this is a huge investment in talent and technology (30 Million according to paidcontent.org). In the press release, not only do they mention Kevin Spacey and Vince Vaughn, they also note that the video produced will be DVD quality, and play full screen on the computer. In an article last month Ad-Age noted that Anheuser-busch was starting an in house tv/film production company that will create “humorous shorts”, but noted it was probably one of their most ambitious forays into content creation. Put it this way, if you spent 1.6 Billion dollars a year on advertising, do you think there are other ways that you could engage with males 18 to 35? Considering myspace, youtube, flickr and all the other great social media plays were probably started for less than a Million I would say Budweiser can probably create a pretty kick ass site.
Oh, and they’re launching in February, what are the odds that they will use their Super Bowl ad spend to launch this service?
One thing I will be interested to see is just how “social” it will be. There is little clue in the press release or related material on “social” features except for the buzz word “consumer generated content”. I imagine it would be a lot cheaper for them if they supplement their professional channels with a “football in the groin” channel, that will surely keep them coming back. On looking closely at the screenshot I see a channel called “bud tube”, I wonder what that will be?
UPDATE: Cnet confirms some of the the Bud Tube details