NBC Universal will replace advertising on some shows next week with content paid for by American Express Co., another sign of how programmers are testing new strategies as consumers become less tolerant of 30-second commercials.
On Feb. 29, NBC will replace ads on shows like "Blindspot," "The Voice," and "Late Night with Seth Meyers" with the content sponsored by the credit card company, NBC said in a statement. That will include extra scenes and interviews with stars from the shows with the American Express brand mentioned before and after each segment.
Many TV networks are cutting back on commercials to appeal to younger viewers who are used to watching shows ad-free on Netflix -- and to appease marketers who are concerned their messages are getting ignored amid the clutter.
NBC in particular has been experimenting more with new ways of weaving marketing messages into shows. In "Playing House," a show on NBC's USA cable network, the characters have starred in customized spots for sponsors like Samsung Electronics Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. that appear during the program when viewers watch on demand.
NBC's advertising deal with American Express marks the first example of how the TV network plans to work with BuzzFeed after making a $200 million investment in the news website last year. As part of the deal, BuzzFeed agreed to make create "shareable content" on its website and the shows' respective websites and on social media channels.
-- Bloomberg News