Nickelodeon comes North with free preview

The network hits the holiday season with a one-month free preview available in eight million households nationwide.

Those looking to get a Nick fix over the holidays are in luck.

Corus Entertainment’s shiny new kids’ network, Nickelodeon, launched Nov. 2 in Canada and will now be offered to eight million Canadian households free for a one-month preview starting Dec. 15.

The channel airs live-action comedies as well as animated programming and its new Canadian incarnation includes 15% Canadian content, including Max & Ruby, Grossology, League of Super Evil, Storm Hawks and Kid vs. Kat. Nickelodeon programming includes franchises like iCarly, SpongeBob SquarePants and Dora the Explorer.

The free preview has one of Corus’s biggest-ever promotional pushes behind it, Laura Baehr, vice president, marketing, Corus Kids, told MiC. Radio spots are running on Corus stations across the country, print ads are running in Whoa! magazine and The Magazine. On-air spots are running on YTV, Treehouse, W Network and CMT. Online promo includes badges on Corus, the websites of the above-mentioned networks and 60 Toys R Us stores in Canada are handing out ‘Nick Comes North’ stickers and showing Nickelodeon sizzle reels on in-store screens.

Nick even got a big push during the Santa Claus Parade with branding in the parade booklet handed out to 40,000 children by police officers. The insertion included mentions of the free preview and a Nickelodeon cut-out ornament featuring network superstars such as Dora. The free preview will also get play on broadcasters’ ‘barker’ channels.

‘The holidays are a perfect time for a free preview of the new Nickelodeon channel, as it gives kids the chance to kick back and check out one of the world’s leading entertainment brands for kids,’ said Baehr. ‘There’s a lot of excitement about the arrival of Nickelodeon in Canada, and we’ve pulled out all the stops to support this free preview with a multi-layered campaign that will ensure kids everywhere know that Nick has landed.’