The Critical 'I'

Read. React. Repeat.

Monday, January 20, 2003

In the age of the 500+ channel digital cable universe (a ripoff, in case anyone asks me), there's plenty of room for cross-media branding. So it is that many consumer magazine titles have found fertile ground for launching namesake programming designed to supplement and boost the print product. This is, of course, the same principle behind any old product-placement branding of TV content. The only difference is that magazines come with their own set of content, and so in that sense they can add a lot more to the final program. It occurs to me that that can be both good and bad...

Similar thinking is behind Home and Garden TV. It just takes things a step further, by devoting an entire network to the magazine brand, instead of just one or two programs. The dynamic works in reverse too, of course: Witness ESPN the Magazine.