Case Study

Culture Hero Dave Navarro Cranks on Spread TV

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The Creators: Dave Navarro and Todd Newman, producers and hosts of "Dave Navarro's Spread TV" on Mr. Navarro is the executive producer and host; while Mr. Newman serves as the co-host and foil on the weekly Web talk show. Mr. Navarro is spreading his wings after his turn in rock stardom as guitarist for the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Jane's Addiction, branching into video and as a DJ on a Los Angeles alternative station.


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The Distributors: "Dave Navarro's Spread TV" runs on, which produces and sells ads for the show. ManiaTV also distributes the series on AOL, Yahoo, You Tube, DailyMotion, Revver, Metacafe, and via mobile devices through a partnership with Transpera. The show will be available on iTunes later this month. New episodes are released every Thursday. "Spread TV's" page on the site attracts about 500,000 to 650,000 viewers each month, with spikes in viewership on Thursdays when new episodes are released. On those days, the page draws about 30,000 to 40,000 viewers.

The Sponsors: The third season of the show will premiere on July 18 with Wrigley Five as a sponsor for the new season. Past advertisers have included Verizon, After Dark Pictures, CBS Television and Nikon. Where possible, the hosts try to integrate the sponsors into the show. With Verizon, for instance, Mr. Newman and Mr. Navarro shot a parody commercial that ran in the show.

The Content: The show is an hour-long talk show in which Mr. Navarro interviews celebrities and authors such as Gene Simmons, Margaret Cho, Moby, Elvira, Perez Hilton, Neil Strauss, Daisy De La Hoya, Pauley Shore and others. "The show is very conversational," Mr. Newman said. "Dave and I don't prepare questions for guests. We get people on and let them talk about what they want to talk about. Dave has a great knack for talking and he can elicit great conversations out of people." Mr. Newman said he communicates with viewers regularly via e-mail and MySpace and takes seriously the feedback from regular fans and viewers.

Backstory: Mr. Newman and Mr. Navarro are long-time friends and Mr. Newman has shot video projects for many of the bands Mr. Navarro has played in. "Here was an opportunity for us to get out all these great ideas we had had in the past few years, everything from sketches and bits and banter and make each other laugh," Mr. Newman said. The show originally was produced live from a local Los Angeles bar called the Dragonfly, but ManiaTV moved the show into a studio about six months ago to better accommodate guests and schedules.

Endgame: "The goal initially was to put together a show that could be seen by people on the Internet and we have achieved that goal," Mr. Navarro said. "I've already done TV and with the Internet there is no FCC regulation, the show goes into instant-on-demand so if you miss a show you can check it out immediately following and see pretty much any show you want. And we have the final say in terms of who is on the show with guests and such, and as a result we have become good friends with a number of interesting people and have gone on to work with then and be personal friends, while hopefully entertaining people. And that is good enough for me."