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Alan Partridge and Fosters - An Excellent Example of Branded Content.

The author

Richard Terry

Group Account Director

As a child I always secretly begrudged my friends who had Sky TV, but I had to keep them sweet enough to get invited around to watch the big Premier League games on a Sunday at 4pm.  What I resented even more was when Sky would screen Pay-Per-View only events, as this would mean having to keep their parents sweet enough to fork out the extra, and frankly, Summer Slam ’93 just wasn’t worth the effort. It grated on me that the best entertainment should go to those who could afford them, not those who really wanted to see them...

Thankfully things are changing now. Radiohead’s decision to make the release of their 2007 album ‘In Rainbows’ exclusively online for ‘whatever you wanted to part with’ was obviously a benchmark in desirable content being made available freely (and legally) to the masses online.  And today (remember, remember the 5th of November), sees the long overdue and widely anticipated return of Alan Partridge. Not at the cinema as most thought it would have been, not even on Satellite channel UK Conquest. No, it’s online EXCLUSIVELY, for FREE on Foster’s website in the shape of 12, 11 minute episodes. That means EVERYONE gets to see it. Now obviously Steve Coogan and Armando Iannucci are getting their money, so it’s not exactly in the same spirit of Radiohead, but it is: a)      GREAT that there is new Partridge material b)      A BRILLIANT coup for Foster’s in their quest to position themselves as a brand that celebrates comedy c)      Going to exponentially boost the traffic d)      Make me buy a four-pack of an otherwise terrible lager, just to say “thanks” I’m now interested to see how other big brands with strategic sponsorship deals are going to follows this. I’m not going to say who I bank with, but just say Barclays were to announce they were to screen all next seasons Premier League matches online, every Saturday at 3pm, exclusively for their online savings customers.... Well in this hypothetical world, I’d rob my own Mother just to get enough money to open an account. Sorry Mum.