NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Underscoring the tech-savviness of even today's youngest children, Nickelodeon's Nick Jr. has launched broadband sneak peeks of its newest preschool series Go Diego Go a full two weeks before its Sept. 6 on-air debut.
|The broadband video portion of NickJr.com is hosted by Stephanie, a pink-haired character from Nick Jr.'s popular Lazytown series.
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Ages 2 to 5
Nick Jr. is Nickelodeon's preschool-oriented property, aimed at children ages 2 to 5.
According to the network, the sneak peek is meant to draw users to NickJr.com's larger broadband re-launch that will make available full-length episodes of some of Nick Jr.'s popular programming, such as Dora the Explorer, Blues Clues and Little Bill.
NickJr.com is an advertising-supported Web site with ads aimed at mothers rather than the children who are the primary target for the site's content. The new streams of broadband sneak peeks video also contain ads aimed at the adults who help their young children navigate the site.
The new sneak peeks video platform launched last week with a full-scale marketing campaign. In addition to offering full-length feature episodes, it will include full-screen views and better graphics and navigation. Programming will also be divided into playlists, categorized by show. A preschooler picking the Dora the Explorer playlist will be able to pick a particular program on demand or sit back and let all of the Dora programs play through.
'Two year olds on the web'
"We're seeing 2 year olds on the Web with their parents," said Kyra Reppen, vice president and general manager of NickJr.com. "The playtime area of the site is a do-together area but it's also where we've committed to creating preschool usability and navigation. We use audio and big bold graphics and icons to help preschoolers navigate. The parents are there but the preschoolers are controlling the mouse."
A preschooler running his mouse over an icon of a video camera, for example, will hear the word "video." Clicking on that will open up the video platform. On-screen host Stephanie, a pink-haired character from Nick Jr.'s popular Lazytown series, introduces the children to the video site.
Exploring new concepts
NickJr.com will also house shorts Mighty Bug 5 and Downward Doghouse before their on-air premiere later this fall. They're good examples, said Ms. Reppen, of a broadband platform premiering programming that hasn't been picked up or developed as a show. "They're really pre-pilots," she said. "We're seeing video as a great opportunity to explore new properties."
"Every year we do kid testing I see more and more ability," she said. "It comes from experience, the more they experience using the mouse and Internet the more skilled they become."
Second Nick Jr. launch
This is the second launch for Nick Jr. Video, which introduced the broadband-based Nick Jr. Parent's TV about a month ago. The parent-targeted video platform features one- to three-minute shorts on activity, game and craft ideas.
Separately this week, Nickelodeon is expanding Nick.com with the launch of NickMail Maker, an instant messaging platform it's calling a "hybrid of e-mail, instant messenger and animation applications."
The platform lets children include with their messages pictures of characters -- both static and animated -- and audio from shows, all of which will be refreshed weekly.