Web Television continues to grow up – first its own awards show and now its own version of television industry’s tried and true Upfronts. The first annual OnFrontNYC went down Tuesday in New York, bringing out over twenty different web content studios to showcase their web series wares to media buyers and digital ad agencies in attendance including Ogilvy, Digitas’ The Third Act and Deep Focus.
Numerous web series, or previews of them, were screened including the trailer for season 2 of the hit drama Prom Queen (above) from Michael Eisner’s Tornante Company and the creative team at Big Fantastic. Other notable series screened were Crackle’s action web series The Bannen Way, dark comedy Hillers, a news season of Illeana Douglas’ Easy to Assemble, Revision3’s new series Film Riot, along with The Mercury Men and a look at the new season of Attention Span Media’s brand-friendly Dorm Life.
Generate‘s CEO Jordan Levin keynoted the event, talking about the state of the web television industry and the entry of major brands into the medium.
..the opportunity to establish a relationship with a consumer online is not only an unparalleled opportunity, but with younger consumers increasingly shifting to a digital experience, it is a necessity. Fear of change is real and most are more comfortable maintaining the status quo than embracing change. But, change is inevitable. I think survival is dependent upon leaning into change, rather than away from it. (Jordan Levin at OnFrontNYC)
Tilzy.TV’s Josh Cohen, who was one of the organizers, wrote today about the event, noting that “by bringing together premier new media studios, major advertisers, and brand representatives, we hoped that all three parties can learn from one another on how to facilitate more ad buys in the online video space.”
Other news out of the content-packed day, web studio EQAL is moving away from its bread and butter serialized dramas—lonelygirl15, KateModern, Harper’s Globe—and into creating a new cooking series, Get Cookin’, with TV chef Paula Deen. (More on that news coming soon.)
Also announced was a new sponsorship deal for Vuguru/Tornante’s Back on Topps, which won a Streamy Award for best ad integration of current sponsor Skype. The comedy series starring the Sklar Brothers will be retiurning for a second season this summer with Dick’s Sporting Goods coming on as a sponsor.
Update: Additional ad agencies in attendance: Initiative, Horizon, Grey, Mediavest, Mediaedge, McCann, Razorfish, Mindshare, Mediacom, Carat, OMD