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Fuse Takes Its Rock Show on the Road

7/14/2006 8:00 PM Eastern

Fuse has stayed close to its New York home to date, but beginning July 17, it will embark on its first in-market promotion: a four-city mall tour.

For its first “road show,” the music network has gained the support of video retailer FYE as its presenting sponsor and candy brand Mike and Ike as associate sponsor.

BRANDING GAMBIT

The mall tour “is reflective of our brand, and bringing the network to our audience is an important part of branding,” said network general manager and executive vice president Catherine Mullen.

The sites for the “Get Malled” tour, running through Aug. 15, were strategically selected: the Franklin Mills Mall on Monday in Philadelphia, where the network is trying to convince Comcast Corp. to add the channel; Boston (Independence Mall on July 31) and Chicago (Gurnee Mills Mall on Aug. 5), where Fuse is a new network addition for the nation’s largest cable operator; and the channel’s home in the New York market, where the promotion will reach out to suburban shopping venue, Palisades Center in Rockland County, N.Y. on Aug. 15.

At each location, Fuse will utilize elements of the city that make locals proud, such as deep-dish pizza in Chicago, sports rivalries in Boston, et. al. to localize the promotion. For use on the digital channel, four original hourly episodes on the tour will be produced at each location, including local music artist segments, videos interviews and localized contests, plus a behind-the-scenes look at each city.

The Fuse Get Malled tour will be hosted by former Full House star Jodie Sweetin (lately a tabloid cover girl for admitting her past addiction to crystal meth). She will be joined by some of the channels top VJs, such as Marianela from Daily Download and Stephen from Stephen’s Untitled Rock Show.

As the presenting sponsor, FYE’s logo will be presented at the beginning of each on-air tour segment, with 30-second spots promoting the association throughout the programming day. Additionally, 1,000 Fuse viewers each day will be able to receive a free FYE download of the day, which will be available through Fuse’s Web site. FYE will promote the downloads on its Web site, too. In the featured malls, Fuse’s live show will open from the attendant FYE store.

Mike and Ike will be featured in customized vignettes and branded segments, and the candy will be included in goodie bags presented to consumers at the malls.

Fuse is extending the promotion to its other platforms, too. Between Aug 7 and 25, three-minute mobisodes will be available from the tour programming to users of the network’s wireless service, FuseOnTheGo.

BLOG FROM MALL

Fuse’s mobile offerings will serve as a gateway for participation in polls and contests, and users can send in guest questions and submit photos from their handsets. At its Web page, viewers can participate in a blog called “Your Mall Stories.” Web-only clips will be created from the mall tour.

The multiplatform campaign with content created during the local promotions will debut on July 31 on television, mobile and the Web.

September