Today Diet Coke announced a new live and online entertainment and lifestyle program Style Series, to be hosted by former West Coast Editor of Glamour and broadcast fashion expert Rachel Zalis. The show will feature celebrity appearances, interviews and performances. The December 9th premiere will host renowned fashion designer Cynthia Rowley, Grammy Award winning artist Robin Thicke and international Grammy Award winning superstar Rihanna as the show’s first guests. Sounds like a safe bet for a major brand that has been timidly moving into the web television market.
Following the top down strategy of old-fashioned marketing campaigns, the unimaginative Style Series will be heavily publicized and distributed by New York-based Digital Broadcasting Group (DBG), which will promote the show through online video banners on entertainment and lifestyle focused websites across the DBG Video Network, People.com, InStyle.com and Yahoo, newsletters, mobile TV pre-roll spots, WAP banners, and outdoor digital billboards in Times Square. There’s no mention of any social media integration, and there doesn’t seem to be anything on YouTube.
It is disheartening to see that a major brand like Diet Coke would play it safe with its content and release strategy when there is so much untapped creative and marketing talent on the web today. Forward thinking companies like Microsoft, Sprint, and Lexus have been able to expand their reach by leveraging web creators that know how to reach an audience and create real engagement. My prediction is Style Series will just be another flash in the pan that will only sustain itself as long as marketing dollars keep it afloat.