USA Network will send forth its latest original series into the work with limited commercial interruptions tonight.
The Oct. 23 series debut of White Collar at 10 p.m. (ET) is being supported by Ford Motor Co. and Ketel One Vodka, according to USA executive vice president, marketing, digital and brand strategy Chris McCumber. The show is USA's first stab at carving out viewing ground with an original series during the start of the traditional TV season, albeit it several weeks past the premiere-week period.
The Ford Taurus will be the exclusive auto partner for White Collar's 14-hour first season, including show integration. The Ford Explorer will also benefit from commercial messaging.
Coming out of the first segment, Ford will exclusively own the first commercial break featuring creative for the "all-new Taurus from Ford," while signaling viewers that White Collar will return in 60 seconds.
Additionally, Ketel One will own the end of the limited commercial premiere and treat viewers to a special expanded preview of the upcoming season of the series. The vodka's partnership will also include in-show integration in the second half of the season, set to air in January, when "Ketel One on-the-rocks" will be established as the signature drink of the ex-con turned FBI agent, Neal Caffrey (Matt Bomer). The show turns on his relationship with FBI agent Peter Burke (Tim DeKay). Click here for a review of White Collar. Check out a sneak peek here.
Both Ford and Ketel One Vodka are also affixed to USA's "Character Profiles," which give viewers a closer look at key characters in the show. Ford is sponsoring the vignette about FBI agent Burke, who also drives the all-new Taurus in the series. Ketel One is aligned with Caffrey. The Character Profile of "Peter" is set to debut on Nov. 13, with "Neal" slated to bow Nov. 20, both Character Profiles will continue to air through Dec. 4.
Both Ford and Ketel One Vodka have also received pre-promotional tune-ins, snipes and billboards leading up to the premiere as well, as continuity within the season as part of their series partnership.
All told, USA is spending some $10 million on its myriad marketing support behind White Collar, according to a report in The New York Times.
"We are delighted to collaborate with Ford and Ketel One Vodka to create integrated marketing campaigns that organically align their individual brands with the distinct characters of our new series," said McCumber in a statement.