Seth Meyers hosted the 2010 ESPY Awards. In his opening monologue, he delivered a home run of a one-liner:

Welcome to the ESPY Awards, where the worlds of sports and entertainment come together. It’s like a Kardashian sister’s bedroom.

Swap out Kardashian sister for someone who rose to pop culture stardom by way of his or her musical abilities, and the above kinda encompasses the premise for Vevo’s new web series, Artists vs. Athletes.

vevo-artists-vs-athletesMike Shields at Adweek reports the internet’s music video mecca with over 51 million monthly online video viewers plans to launch the original series with an initial run of 10 20-minute episodes. Each installment will feature interviews between major league sports professionals and major recording artists.

Vevo’s signed the National Basketball Association as its first partner for the program, with plans to go after the NFL, NHL, and MLB. The premiere episodes are slated to debut “sometime around the NBA playoffs in April and May.” TNT will possibly tease the online series during its broadcasts of playoff games.

No sponsors have signed on board, but Shields notes Vevo EVP of Sales and Customer Relations, David Kohl is in talks with NBA advertisers. He claims the series is a “7 to 10-million dollar opportunity.”

Before Kohl and his Vevo crew try to wrangle seven-figure checks from top athletic brands, they should conduct their web series due diligence and take away at least a couple lessons from the MySpace original, Artist on Artist:

  1. Don’t use Barbara Walters interviews or press junkets as the inspiration for the look and feel of your program.
  2. Avoid the shill.

And David, if you want more tips on how to make Artists vs. Athletes a success, please feel free to get in touch.

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