Montreal, Quebec, Canada, March 6, 2014 – Astucemedia — a Montreal-based provider of live broadcast graphics services with an office in Dubai, UAE — managed critical elements of a massive rebranding campaign for Helsinki, Finland-based media group MTV Network (which is not related to any music television network). The goal of the rebranding campaign was to unify its 12-channels—including MTV3, AVA, SUB, Sport1, Sport2, and MAX — into a distinctive, cohesive network group.
In addition to providing a workflow for delivering live broadcast graphics and templates to air, Astucemedia’s rebranding efforts also give MTV Network an easy, automated way to cross promote programming on its related channels to keep viewers tuned to MTV Network media properties. Rather than managing each channel as an independent silo, MTV Network now takes a more efficient network approach to media sales, advertising, and promotions across all of its channels.
London-based DixonBaxi handled the design for the rebranding project, which was a year in the making in close collaboration with MTV Network’s promotions and design teams. Astucemedia joined the project prior to the launch to implement the designs and integrate the workflow in a way that met all of the automation and scheduling requirements.
“Audience management is one of the most exciting and critical objectives of our massive channel rebranding and relaunch campaign,” said Tuomo Kulomaa, head of promotion for MTV Network. “The beauty of the Astucemedia installation is that it automates the delivery of channel branding elements to air and the cross promotion of our programming network-wide, while giving us the flexibility to capitalize on last-minute commercial or promotional opportunities as they arise.”
MTV Network also based its choice of Astucemedia on the success of its AVA rebranding campaign, which Astucemedia handled for them one year ago when MTV Network acquired the free-to-air lifestyle channel. With this November 2013 rebranding campaign, MTV Network positioned all of its channels under one network umbrella: MTV3, its flagship commercial TV channel, AVA, and SUB, a trendy, free-to-air channel, as well as its 9 pay-tv channels — now branded as a new package called mtv TOTAL — including Sport 1, Sport 2, and MAX.
“After one year of preparation—including graphics, rebranding and template design—MTV Network successfully relaunched all of its channels on November 3, 2013. The changeover, which took place in just one day, transformed everything in the company including live news graphics, studio sets, printed logos, websites, promos, nationwide advertising, and on-air broadcast looks,” said Thomas Desmeules, director of research and development for Astucemedia as well as on-site project manager for the MTV Network rebranding campaign.
“One of the biggest technical challenges was the execution of Network Space, a core creative concept that is central to this rebranding campaign,” Desmeules said. “To generate this Network Space concept convincingly, Astucemedia developed a complex set of scenes using Orad 3Designer as well as a schedule-driven logic interface within the Orad 3DPlay control software. With this approach, all of the graphics automatically adapt to the branding and colour schemes of the channel, allowing master-control operations to be streamlined by using the same set of graphics and templates on each channel’s Orad HDVG+.”
The Network Space is a visual presentation that each MTV Network channel uses for end-credit squeezes and other pullback scenarios. This common theme across the channels serves as a platform to manage the audience based on real-time scheduling data and promotions requirements. Audience management is via 4 demographic groups (women, men, teens and general), and viewers are prompted to change the channel to a complimentary program within the MTV network. The Network Space also serves as a platform to insert customized advertising across all channels.
Flexibility for the scheduling and promotions department was imperative. A single control interface drives channel-branding elements for 6 MTV channels in an automated, template-based process. On-screen elements dynamically adapt to programming content, adjusting logos, colors and camera movements where applicable.
“On the creative side, we needed to implement the proposed branding designs in a way to maximize play-out efficiency and adaptability, and on the technical side, we needed to develop run-time logic to integrate custom data, like audience demographics and traffic scheduling data, into live channel branding presentations,” Desmeules said. “This enables cross channel promotions to drive viewers in a particular demographic to other MTV Network shows of interest to them.”
“We chose Astucemedia for this highly complex live channel branding mission because they already possess the exceptional, specialized skills necessary to carry out this project in an efficient, cost-effective way,” said MTV Network’s Kulomaa. “Their unique technical expertise also encompasses the ability to integrate advanced graphics workflows with third-party traffic and automation systems to produce a seamless, operator-friendly, end to end workflow that we can build on for years to come.”