TNT's 'The Closer' bags Zappos for season premiere promo

By T.L. Stanley on Thu Jul 8 2010

ABagLikeBrendaSweepstakes_650x250_0 Deputy Police Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson of TNT's The Closer totes a bunch of stuff around in her giant black purse—badge, gun, handcuffs, rap sheets, snack cakes, sometimes a pet cat. If you had a bag that big, you might toss in the kitchen sink, too. That idiosyncratic detail is anchoring a promotion between the cop show and Zappos will give fans the chance to win "A Bag Like Brenda's" and play an online game, "What's in Brenda's Bag?" to hype the new season of the cable drama, launching Monday. In addition to the purse, someone will win a trip to Los Angeles, a Warner Bros. tour, Southern comfort food dinners and other VIP perks. The promo will get exposure via e-newsletters, banners, social media, package inserts and e-mail blasts. A second advertiser-supported promo, with American Greetings, has created Closer-themed e-cards, notably a free one that features Johnson (played by Kyra Sedgwick) spouting her down-home trademark phrase, "Thank Yew." Other characters and quote-worthy phrases will be included in the e-card line. The marketer will tout the partnership in its digital communications and across its family of sites like and

TNT hoops announcers dressing up as Mr. T for 'A Team' promos

Posted on Tue May 18 2010


What if Charles Barkley had been cast in the upcoming remake of The A-Team instead of UFC champ Quinton "Rampage" Jackson? The former basketball great cuts a fine Mr. T figure, but as many of us know, he's not big in the acting department. You can see that for yourselves in a cross-promotion airing on TNT during the NBA's Western Conference Finals. In a deal between the network and Twentieth Century Fox, the studio behind the action adventure, vignettes of "lost auditions" featuring Barkley and fellow TNT commentators Ernie Johnson and Kenny Smith are part of the telecasts. Turns out each of those guys had their heart set on that campy, iconic role in the film, opening June 11, and was willing to don the mohawk and bling to nail it. Actually, it's another in a long line of Hollywood/pro-sports commercial pacts that weave together on-air personalities, game play and upcoming movies in a way that rarely seems to bother fans. As long as viewers get a laugh out of it (Johnson in a leather vest? Hilarious!), they don't protest the ever-blurring line between content and ads. Whether they show up on opening weekend for the flick remains to be seen.

—Posted by T.L. Stanley

L.A. set to invade New York with TNT's transit ads for 'Dark Blue'

Posted on Thu Jul 2 2009

Darkblue copy

It's Woody Allen's worst nightmare realized. Los Angeles comes to New York! The sunsets, the New Age colonics clinics, the surfer speak, the medical marijuana dispensaries, Angelyne, the plastic people! OK, those last two are redundant, but the point is that TNT is bringing the West Coast city famous for car congestion on stagnant streets to New York City's biggest transportation hub to promote the launch of Dark Blue, a Left Coast-based police drama.  
  It won't be all sunshine and granola-topped Pinkberry parfaits. Throughout July, New York's Grand Central Terminal commuters will find themselves walking through L.A.'s gritty underbelly as part of the promo. Across the terminal, some 100 different pieces of creative—posters, column wraps, staircase signs and video motion boards—will inform commuters, "Now entering Underground L.A.," hip them to the July 15 premiere and introduce show characters such as Carter Shaw (Dylan McDermott). Even the No. 7 shuttle that runs between Grand Central and Times Square won't be spared an L.A. makeover. The outside of the cars will be wrapped to depict the Los Angeles skyline, while the inside will be tricked out as warehouses with cops peeking in windows.
  "The idea was to create an immersive, subversive experience and take it literally underground in the center of New York," says Tricia Melton, TNT's svp of entertainment marketing. "People know this whole undercover world exists, that the guy pumping gas next to you could be working undercover."

—Posted by Becky Ebenkamp



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