Russell Peters gets Sirius

A new promo partnership between the megastar comedian and the satellite radio co is giving the country's funniest up-and-comer stage time by his side.

Russell Peters is sharing the spotlight to help Sirius Canada promote its comedy content and programming.

A new partnership between the satellite co and the megastar comedian is giving stage time to the country’s funniest up-and-coming stand-up comics as part of a new contest promo. Running throughout this month, the national search for Canada’s BFF (Best Funny Five) runs online and gives contestants a chance to open for and perform live with Russell Peters.

Targeting comedy fans aged 25 to 54, skewed male, entrants upload vids of their best funny work – five sets of jokes over five minutes – to the contest microsite and have friends and family view and rate them. On Nov. 1, online voting at opens and the resulting top 10 are placed before Russell who, on Nov. 15, will select the BFF winner who gets to open for him at a stop on his upcoming Canadian tour, a $2,500 appearance fee, travel and accommodations for two, and of course, VIP backstage treatment alongside Mr. Peters himself.

‘Russell is a powerful force and his involvement is helping to draw awareness to our unique offering,’ Paul Cunningham, Sirius Canada VP, sales and marketing, tells MiC. ‘The strategy is to leverage his popularity as a no-holds-barred entertainer to draw attention to the comedy and entertainment programming available on Sirius.’

The contest is being promoted on TV with 30-second spots driving viewers to and The spots are running nationally on Comedy Network for four weeks, where Sirius was also the presenting sponsor of a Russell Peters special. Online, the contest is being promoted leveraging a network of online ad buys consisting of a leaderboard and big box ad that also drives to There’s also assorted public relations and social media tactics in the works focusing on getting the word out by engaging with journalists and bloggers.

‘It’s all about highlighting our programming and content to prospective customers in new and unique ways,’ says Cunningham. ‘We wanted to increase consumer engagement with both the Sirius brand and our content with a chance to drive to online trial. The Russell Peters BFF promotion allows us to leverage online videos, fan voting and social media,’ he notes. ‘Because we want to drive consumers to upload videos, having a stronger online presence that drives directly to the microsite makes good sense.’

Sirius also gets exposure at Russell Peters’ tours, including stage branding, tour bus branding and through Russell’s website, Twitter, Facebook and Myspace pages. ‘There is a big audience for stand-up comedy in Canada,’ says Cunningham ‘and we see our satellite radio comedy channels as a significant asset, so creating a promotion around our comedy content made sense.’