Sci Fi Channel Strategic Opportunities - May 2009 - Broadcasting & Cable

Sci Fi Channel Strategic Opportunities - May 2009

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STRATEGIC OPPORTUNITIES

CABLEU NEED TO KNOW:

The announcement of Sci Fi Channel's rebranding comes as no surprise, though the new title, "Syfy," might confuse some at first.  (When a network needs to preemptively purchase rights to syfysucks.com is that really a good thing?)  Either way, the times, they are a-changin' for the network.

According to recent press, the change was made, in part, so they can move away from the nerdy and geeky images traditionally associated with science-fiction fans.  Network President David Howe said that the name resonated with the younger, tech-savvy crowd because that would be "how they would text it." He also said, in an intevriew with TV Week, the name "...made us feel much cooler, much more cutting-edge, much more hip, which was kind of bang-on what we wanted to achieve communication-wise." (TV Week, March 16, 2009)

But the bottom-line on the name-change can be found by looking at the bottom-line. "It's a broad-appeal, mainstream entertainment genre," Howe says. "That's what we're embracing with this rebrand." In other words, it allows the network to go after a bigger audience.

Also in the works are extensions of the Syfy brand as kids' network, a gaming company, and finding a home in new global territories.

According to an article in C21, Network President David Howe is looking for a companion show to Sci Fi's GHOST HUNTERS.  Says Howe, "We absolutely are focused around finding more partner shows that we can launch with GHOST HUNTERS - anything that taps into the supernatural, paranormal space, that gives you that docu-soap of a team that is in these houses, and also the visceral fear element of ghostly, spine-chilling stuff going on within the house. We'd really love to nail another show that we can put alongside GHOST HUNTERS and that's a big focus for this year." (C21, March 2, 2009.)


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