New Service Leverages Power of Interactive Technology to Help Consumers Get More From Their Television Experience
BETHPAGE, NY, September 16, 2009 — Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) announced today the planned launch of Optimum Select, a transformational television viewing experience, which uses the power of interactivity to help consumers get more from their TVs. Optimum Select turns the thirty-second commercial into a gateway for longer engagement with a brand. Cablevision will activate Optimum Select across its entire base of nearly 3 million iO TV® digital cable customers in early October.
With the push of the “Select” button on the remote control, viewers are able to interact with marketing content on their own terms while continuing to watch current programming. Initial forms of interaction will include a request for more information about a product or service, including a free sample or coupon, access to longer form content and other benefits.
“Consumers are inherently curious and Optimum Select provides a fast and simple way for our customers to learn about new products and services and get more from their television,” said Gemma Toner, Cablevision’s senior vice president of marketing and business development. “This is all about giving consumers the ability to explore more content, realize more savings and have more fun while creating a deeper and more meaningful viewing experience.”
“Optimum Select provides a unique opportunity for advertisers to put their brands in the hands of highly qualified and engaged consumers,” said David Kline, president of Rainbow Advertising Sales Corporation, Cablevision and Rainbow Media’s advertising sales unit. “With Optimum Select, the thirty-second spot is truly transformed into an extended brand engagement experience, with immediate ability to take action, a marketer’s dream.”
How It Works
Optimum Select is a powerful new enhancement built upon advanced technology, yet the consumer experience is simple and straightforward:
* A Select button overlay at the bottom of the screen will appear during a commercial, inviting the consumer to press Select for more information.
* Once the consumer presses “Select,” the current program is shifted to the top right corner of the screen to allow continued viewing.
* Several options may appear, including the ability to “Submit” and receive a free sample of the product, coupon, or additional product information. The choices depend on the specific campaign and advertiser.
* Once the consumer selects “Submit,” the sample, coupon or product information will be mailed right to the consumer’s home using the address that corresponds with the customer’s account.
Understanding the Consumer Mindset
Cablevision conducted comprehensive consumer research in the development of Optimum Select. The research showed that consumers want more from their TV experience but are skeptical about interactive television due to the fact it has been discussed for many years but never truly realized.
“The beauty of Optimum Select is that the consumer owns the interaction with the service and after just a few short steps consumers will receive coupons or free samples, mailed directly to their home,” added Toner. “This research informed our marketing strategy to roll-out a sequenced introduction of Optimum Select’s features to Cablevision’s customer base to best achieve understanding of what Optimum Select has to offer and encourage participation. The service will launch with Optimum Select RFI, the Request for Information (RFI) feature of Optimum Select, and will roll-out additional features over the next 12 months, as consumers become more familiar with the service, including the ability for consumers to save content and eventually make purchases, all at the press of a button.”
Optimum Select will continue to provide consumers with opportunities to get more from their TV experience throughout the year with the introduction of Optimum Select Content Saving, which will provide the ability to save video on demand content, such as a full length movie trailer or video of a Thanksgiving recipe from a thirty-second spot. The saved content will be available to consumers immediately and accessed easily from a consumer’s personal Optimum Select folder. This folder will be available directly from the main iO TV menu with the push of the iO button and online. Ultimately, Optimum Select Commerce will become an option for consumers to make purchases directly through the television.
Optimum Select is accessible to digital customers with an interactive digital set-top box.