The Today Show is incorporating sponsored content into the morning newscast during the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.
This morning, at 8:35 a.m. Al Roker read what appeared to be a news story about Intel using 1,200 drones in a choreographed display during the Opening Ceremony Friday.
Then, Roker began reading marketing copy about NBC’s use of virtual reality during the Games.
Intel is also bringing viewers a more immersive experience right at home. For the first time ever at the Winter Olympics, you can use virtual reality technology to jump right into the middle of all of the action. It’s as easy as downloading the NBC Sports VR app. There you can access events, like alpine skiing, figure skating, hockey–get close up to the Olympians. It heats up the competition and it is going to be something awfully cool.
The integration was actually part of Intel’s sponsorship deal with NBC Olympics, which includes the Today show. But NBC tells us one thing was missing: there was supposed to be a graphic that indicated this was sponsored content, but due to a “technical error” it didn’t show up. It was fixed for the later feeds.
This was the first day of the show’s two weeks of coverage from Pyeongchang. We’ve asked if there will be other in-show integrations, but, given the 14-hour time difference, have not heard back.