Oprah upfront excites buyers

The new channel arrives in Canada in March, giving advertisers a new place to reach a broad demographic of women.

Corus hosted an upfront presentation for advertisers yesterday morning to show off its new property, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, which comes to Canada March 1.

The channel is expected to offer up a demographic that does a lot of household shopping and is attractive to many companies.

Helena Shelton, EVP, trading and accountability, PHD Canada, tells MiC that because of that demographic the Oprah brand is invaluable, though there are still questions about the breadth of opportunities.

‘Clients will be attracted to the audience she will deliver,’ she says. ‘The big question will be whether any integration will be possible, particularly here in Canada. Harpo Productions has a reputation of being in full control of all their media assets.’

Sunni Boot, president and CEO of ZenithOptimedia, agrees that the Queen of Daytime Talk’s recognition is priceless, and adds that the target for the new channel matches the target of a lot of advertisers.

‘These are women of all ages, which is one of the wonderful things about Oprah,’ Boot says. ‘She crosses the age groups. They’re women who have a high interest in home, fashion, travel – they’re really quite mainstream, and that’s good, we’re looking for that because we’re looking for scale.’

The channel also fits into Corus’ lineup in a nice way, Boot adds.

‘They have synergistic products with W and Cosmo, and also they’re very good marketers of a product like that. This is a wonderful addition to their lineup, and increasingly, as we look at media companies, we’re looking at the number of brands they have, especially when you get into digital.’

The channel will be promoted through Corus’ W Network and Viva, which will both air blocks of programming from OWN throughout January and February. On March 1, the channel will replace Viva and start off in more than six million homes. OWN launches in the US on Jan. 1.