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NBC, Xerox Serve Up Branded News Bites in New Native Ad Effort

Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 3, 2014 11:44 AM

NBCUniversal and Xerox have partnered on an industry-first, a one year deal to bring consumers “30 Seconds to Know,” a cross-platform video series that explains complicated topics in quick bites of information. 

Curated for each network including NBC News, MSNBC, CNBC, NBCSN and Golf Channel, the video snapshots of the day’s headlines might answer, “Why does the price of gas fluctuate?” “Are Black Holes dangerous?” and “How should you analyze your golf round?”

“People today consume content on the go. They want easy, digestible information to become better informed about wide ranging topics,” said, Seth Winter, EVP, News and Sports Ad Sales Group, NBCUniversal, in a press release. “Simplifying how audiences consume news pairs well with Xerox’s commitment to help businesses simplify the way people work. And, we are able to scale the multiplatform initiative across our newly formed ‘Live Programming’ group and reach audiences wherever they consume content.”

NBC News was an early adopter of native ad formats online and the Xerox deal expands those native units to broadcast, cable TV news and sports channels. The move, although not surprising, shows the significance of this new kind of ad content and proliferates past the boundaries of print and online publishing. "As journalism fully embraces digital formats, advertisers are leaving less and less money on the table for sponsorships and ads, and these new formats breathe new life into an already shaky model," Adotas.com writer Richard Tso commented

The spots, which began airing last week, are promoted using the #30SecondstoKnow hashtag on social media. 

“We were impressed with NBCUniversal’s integrated approach to media sponsorship across their various platforms,” said Barbara Basney, VP Global Advertising and Media, Xerox Corporation, in the press release. “We’re able to ensure brand consistency across the key networks we advertise on most—news and sports. This, coupled with the straightforward concept of ‘30 Seconds to Know’ aligns our company’s business focus on simplifying complexity.”

As broadcasters and publishers strive to retain audience and advertisers, Tso said, “lines will continue to become blurred and no doubt, it will be interesting to see what will happen to the integrity of editorial reporting as brands exert more and more influence over content.” 

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