USA NETWORK AND VIRGIN RECORDS ENTER INTO
FIRST-EVER EXCLUSIVE MUSIC MARKETING PACT FOR TELEVISION
Groundbreaking TV Deal Unites Brands in Music for Promotion Agreement
Before architecting the USA Network / Yahoo! Music partnership, Spencer Proffer and USA Network SVP Chris McCumber conceived branding the network with fresh music from a single label group. In 2006, that was brought that to fruition with Virgin records, as stated in the following press release:
New York, NY – June 14, 2006 – USA Network has entered into an exclusive agreement with Virgin Records, a division of EMI Music, to provide music from the label’s artists for use across all of USA’s marketing platforms including on-air promotion, cross-channel advertising, digital and mobile. In a first for television, the groundbreaking deal marks the first time a network has made such an exclusive pact with a record label. Additionally, a Virgin Records micro-site will be available on USA’s web site, usanetwork.com, which will provide artist and promotional information on the Virgin label music being heard on the network. The announcement was made today by Chris McCumber, USA’s senior vice president, marketing & brand strategy.
“With a rich roster depth of talented recording artists across all musical genres, Virgin is an ideal sonic partner for our ‘Characters Welcome’ brand initiatives,” said McCumber. “We’re thrilled to be working with Spencer Proffer again and are truly excited about collaborating with the Virgin team.” The concept and structure of the agreement was developed by the USA marketing team, together with music media producer and strategic architect Spencer Proffer who is partnered with renowned music manager Doc McGhee in McGhee-Proffer Media.
“USA’s captivating and innovative programming is a perfect fit for Virgin’s immensely talented and diverse roster, ranging from Joss Stone to Dem Franchize Boyz from Korn to KT Tunstall, and to the next generation of stars like Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, Johnta Austin and The Summer Obsession,” added Jeff Kempler, Virgin Records Executive Vice President. “This unique relationship furthers our commitment to deliver a dynamic multi-format approach to turning music fans on to our artists’ new releases.”
Virgin will be the first provider of music behind network promotions for all USA programming. The #1 cable network, USA is also cable television’s leading provider of original series and feature movies, sports and entertainment events, off-net television series and blockbuster films. The USA line-up includes the returning original series’ MONK, DEAD ZONE and THE 4400, as well as the new series PSYCH, premiering July 7. USA is also home to ratings blockbuster, WWE’s MONDAY NIGHT RAW and the country music talent competition NASHVILLE STAR, as well as the off-net home for the critically acclaimed LAW AND ORDER franchise’s, SVU and CRIMINAL INTENT and the hit series, HOUSE. The net is also home to the annual WESTMINSTER DOG SHOW, the US OPEN tennis championship and numerous PGA tournaments and events.
The music will be identified in a variety of methods including chyron titles featuring the name of the artist, song, album and label. USA will also work with Virgin Records to create a specific on-air spot identifying the label as supplying the music heard on the network and driving viewers to the USA web site for more information, where there will be further links to the Virgin records site. USA also plans to create in-show, on-air graphics to promote the online site.
A noted music producer/songwriter with many platinum records to his credit, Proffer has also been involved as a producer as well as music director in several award-winning film, television and Broadway projects. In the television arena, Spencer worked closely with former Showtime Networks programming president Jerry Offsay for seven years, overseeing and implementing music strategies. Additionally, he spearheaded creative and music supervision for all Showtime programming as well as for other television networks. Proffer‘s history with USA includes co-writing and producing the theme song and video for USA’s KOJAK series and the key marketing music for USA’s FRANKENSTEIN remake.
USA NETWORK is cable television's leading provider of original series and feature movies, sports and entertainment events, off-net television shows, and blockbuster theatrical films. The #1 basic cable network across the board in 1Q06, USA Network is seen in 90 million U.S. homes. The USA Network Web site is located at www.usanetwork.com. Characters Welcome.
USA Network is a program service of NBC Universal Cable a division of NBC Universal, one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience.
About Virgin Records
Virgin Records is a division of EMI Music, the world’s largest independent record company. Among the artists on the Virgin roster are Bubba Sparxxx, Dem Franchize Boyz, Jermaine Dupri, Gorillaz, Ben Harper, Janet Jackson, Korn, Lenny Kravitz, Stacy Orrico, Joss Stone, and The Rolling Stones. Virgin’s U.S. headquarters are located in New York.