In the world of branded entertainment, major media buying agencies have carved out a very cozy niche pairing the lifestyle brands they represent with content targeted towards the highly coveted 25 to 40 year old female demographic. In Canada, they seem to have turned it into an art form.
The series, which soft-launched earlier this month, is sponsored in whole by KitchenAid, part of the Whirlpool home appliances conglomerate. The show is hosted by celebrity chef Rob Rainford, who also hosts his own show on Food Network, License to Grill, and will feature guests like husband-and-wife celebrity chef duo Anna and Michael Olson, and health advocate, Rose Reisman, and will run through the end of 2010 on FoodNetwork.ca.
A collaboration from the ground up, the show was created by KitchenAid’s media agency, MediaCom, produced by Canwest D71 (a division of Canwest Broadcasting), and has been structured as a 17-week pure-play media buy against the show paired with seven months of online advertising across the FoodNetwork.ca site.
While this is the network’s first foray into the world of branded entertainment online, Food Network.ca is no stranger when it comes to web series. In April of 2009, the network acquired critically acclaimed web series Bitchin’ Kitchen, hosted by Nadia G, and successfully brought the series to cable television, subsequently sprouting the Bitchin’ Lifestyle brand that today includes books, apparel, and more.
As is frustratingly standard for web series distributed by traditional television networks, the show is currently only available to viewers in Canada.