Rogers has unveiled its new CityTV television lineup and most of the content is headed to the TV screen, but there’s one comedy series that’s set to be a digital-first experience.
Rogers Canadian-made original, Second Jen, written by and staring Samantha Wan of Sudden Master fame, and also Amanda Joy. The basis behind the show is a “coming-of-age comedy about two second-generation Chinese and Filipino-Canadian millennials and best friends experiencing all of life’s firsts.”
We quickly interviewed Colette Watson, vice-president of Rogers Television, about the new digital first initiatives and how the company intends to differentiate itself within the changing media landscape.
Q: Why digital first on Second Jen?
Colette Watson: Samantha Wan is the producer, writer, and actress in that program and this is actually our second go-around with her. We did a web series last year called Sudden Master and she’s a great talent. At the time, we were thinking we need different length of content. I think you need to shoot right for each type of content. If I want a program to get a new audience, I have to find people that they resonate with and that talent needs to create programming based on that.
Second Jen is real life told in an authentic way. Wan has done it for digital and we thought it’s going to be so great we also asked her to do a TV version.
Q: When will the show be available?
Colette Watson: Late September early October. The TV version will come out several months after that.
Q: How long are the digital episodes?
Colette Watson: They are going to vary, but between five and ten minutes. We are letting her decide what she wants to do.
Q: here will people be able to watch it?
Colette Watson: On CityTV.com.
Q: Any other platforms, such as mobile, YouTube or Facebook?
Colette Watson: We have not gotten to that part yet. It’s going to depend on what we do with sales. On the business side of things we are looking for advertisers right now to integrate within the show. We are writing it now and the show runner has just been hired and there is an opportunity if you’re an advertiser, such as Cover Girl, to get embedded within the show. That is the way the future is run. The advertising could be more subliminal, organic and authentic. I think we have to find a way to work with advertisers that is not just “spots and dots.”
Q: Is this a test for other digital initiatives?
Colette Watson: Yes. We have one more program in the thought hopper right now that I’m really excited about right now. It’s called Mangoes, they have a YouTube channel, which is about millennials who are more South East Asian and the cultural difference between the parent and the kids trying to work and date.