MTV Strategic Opportunities - March 2009

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MTV is undoubtedly one of the most recognized brands in the cable industry.  What began as a music network has exploded into a haven for well-developed, young-skewing, long-form programming. 

Much of MTV's shows revolve around the ages of the viewers they target - from teens to young adults.  There is a distinct music flavor to the network, even when the shows (like THE REAL WORLD or THE HILLS) don't necessary have anything "musical" about them.  Often music is used to convey emotions and new bands can find their big break when one of their songs debuts on an MTV show.  One visit to their website confirms it - music is definitely first at MTV, and long-form programming secondary.


Teen angst and lots of drama are keys for creating a successful MTV show.  Include some drunken hookups and alcohol-induced blowouts, and you're set.


MTV has acquired a variety of off-network reality shows (AMERICA'S NEXT TOP MODEL and BEAUTY AND THE geek), which they share with sister net Vh1.   These programs consistantly perform well on both networks.


MTV does not accept unsolicited proposals.  But they are always featuring casting calls for a variety of their programming.  Information is available on their website at


According to a recent article in TV Week, "MTV's newer shows are aimed at a new generation, the Millennials."

"'There's a palpable generational shift in attitudes that's informing a new point of view as we develop content and the brand. The change in our audience is reflected in new formats, tonal voices and storytelling cadence,' said Tony DiSanto, head of programming for MTV. 'Millennials have a great sense of optimism and are filled with a "Ëœcan-do' spirit that's infused into all areas of their lives. Just as we've shifted with our audience in the past, we're now embracing a new brand filter ... one that inspires us to break boundaries, bust our mold and reinvent.'" (TV Week)


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