As usual, Showtime launches first major campaign of Emmy season
Awards-savvy Showtime is the first network to launch its Emmy campaign this year by continuing the digital innovation it introduced last year. Again TV academy members may watch episodes of Showtime's Emmy contenders on line.
Showtime claims that last year's Internet campaign "resulted in academy members tuning in at a rate of approximately four full episodes per member," according to Richard Licata, executive VP of corporate communications. Result of the awards push: 21 Emmy bids, including an historic bid for "Dexter," which joined "Damages" and "Mad Men" as the first non-HBO cable series to be nominated for best drama or comedy series.
On Feb. 28, a new version of the site was unveiled for this year's derby and last week the network shipped out its campaign box directly to voters' homes and offices. Inside each box is a passcode that grants voters access to the "online screening room" (which promises broadcast quality viewing) plus there are four DVDs that include three sample episodes of "Californication" (201, 204, 210), "United States of Tara" (101, 102, 103) and "Weeds" (401, 402, 413). Also inside: two sample episodes of "Brotherhood" (304, 308), "Dexter" (305, 310) "The L Word" (601, 606), "Penn & Teller: Bull…!" (603, 604) "Secret Diary of a Call Girl" (201, 202), "This American Life" (205, 206) and "The Tudors" (301, 302) and one sample episode of "Tracey Ullman's State of the Union" (201).
In April, Showtime will heighten its digital innovation by making its episodes accessible to Emmy voters via iPhones and iPodTouch devices.