MSN Debuts Original Interactive Baseball Reality Show

  |  July 11, 2006   |  Comments

"Fan Club: Reality Baseball" lets viewers call the shots for a minor-league team.

Hoping to capitalize on the impulse that fuels fantasy baseball players everywhere, Microsoft's MSN is aiming for a hit with a new program called "Fan Club: Reality Baseball." The show lets viewers vote on management decisions for a real professional minor-league baseball team, then watch what happens.

The program, part of the Originals venture announced in May, is expected to debut today with advertising opportunities that include display ads, streaming video availabilities, sponsorship packages and in-content integration. The company didn't divulge the identities of initial advertisers, though it said it had signed some deals. MSN attempted a similar original content initiative in 1996, but eventually ended up cancelling all its programs.

"Fan Club" content will consist largely of short-form video. Background information on the team, the Illinois-based Schaumberg Flyers, will populate the site upon its launch. Along the way, users will be able to select the team roster, determine batting order and choose pitchers. They'll also be able to make decisions on roommate assignments and player trades. Whatever they collectively decide will be implemented, and they'll then be able to watch the results via short-form video and text narrative.

Team members, their families and friends will blog on MSN Spaces as part of the program, a content element which aims to provide viewers a window behind the scenes.

The show is being put together in partnership with production company Live Planet, which ran "Project Greenlight" for HBO and Bravo, and Los Angeles-based interactive agency Schematic.

"This is an incredible opportunity to bring a brand-new form of interactive storytelling to MSN's many millions of users -- a much larger audience than can typically be reached today on TV," said Larry Tanz, CEO of LivePlanet, in a statement.

ClickZ Live San Francisco Revolutionize your digital marketing campaigns at ClickZ Live San Francisco (August 10-12)!
Educating marketers for over 15 years, our action-packed, educationally-focused agenda offers 9 tracks to cover every aspect of digital marketing. Join over 500 digital marketers and expert speakers from leading brands. Register today!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Pamela Parker

Pamela Parker is a former managing editor of ClickZ News, Features, and Experts. She's been covering interactive advertising and marketing since the boom days of 1999, chronicling the dot-com crash and the subsequent rise of the medium. Before working at ClickZ, Parker was associate editor at @NY, a pioneering Web site and e-mail newsletter covering New York new media start-ups. Parker received a master's degree in journalism, with a concentration in new media, from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism.

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

ClickZ Today is our #1 newsletter.
Get a daily dose of digital marketing.

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

Featured White Papers

US Consumer Device Preference Report

US Consumer Device Preference Report
Traditionally desktops have shown to convert better than mobile devices however, 2015 might be a tipping point for mobile conversions! Download this report to find why mobile users are more important then ever.

E-Commerce Customer Lifecycle

E-Commerce Customer Lifecycle
Have you ever wondered what factors influence online spending or why shoppers abandon their cart? This data-rich infogram offers actionable insight into creating a more seamless online shopping experience across the multiple devices consumers are using.

WEBINARS

Jobs

  • Sr. Marketing Specialist, PPC
    Sr. Marketing Specialist, PPC (Charter Communications) - StamfordSr. Marketing Specialist, PPC– Digital Marketing Charter Communications...