Web video series projects often finds themselves in limbo. Most brands are less inclined than they were a few years ago to fund such shows on their own. And many Web video companies don't have the ability to write Netflix-like checks for shows without knowing they'll have a few sponsors on board.
GroupM Entertainment is looking to help.
The unit of GroupM Worldwide has announced it will invest in two youth skewing shows from Alloy Digital Chasing: Season 2 (music themed blend of Amazing Race mixed with Survivor) and Encore, a reality series centered on high school reunions.
Both shows were rolled out during Alloy's NewFront last May; each is aimed at an 12-34 year old demographic. each a premium digital property conceived by Alloy Digital’s ideation team and targeted to consumers aged 12-34.
"The investment we’ve made in this is not client funding, it's our money," said Peter Tortorici, president of GroupM Entertainment. "We really want to help our media partners create better assets. That's good for our clients. In the past, it's been a little bit of chicken and egg, where Web shows only get made if brands fund it."
"We hate that model," said Alloy Digital CEO Matt Diamond. "That's terrible for the digital industry. It hurts content. We think both of these pieces should be produced no matter what. It's not content that should be waiting around. So that's why this investment is so great."
Diamond said that starting early next year both shows will be distributed on YouTube, Roku, Xbox, and across the Web via Alloy's teens sites such as Clevvertv.com. In the meantime, Tortorici's team will look to find the right clients for each to sponsor. "These shows come from fantastic producers who know young audiences," said Tortorici. "We think these could go the distance, and we want to bring these to clients ahead of other brands."
Here's a clip from season 1 of Chasing, which focused on a popular DJ (season 2 features a band):