Network 10’s chief content officer Beverley McGarvey was taking part in the broadcaster’s UpClose mini upfront event that started a nationwide roadshow this week in Sydney.
In between the first agency groups she spoke to in Sydney, McGarvey told Mediaweek their plan for 2019 has not deviated much from the roadmap they unveiled at last year’s major Upfront event.
“We were always looking for a couple of big shows for the back of the year. By the end of the year people have committed to so many big constructed reality shows with cooking, renovation and the like, we were looking for something to standout from those.
“We are doing The Masked Singer, which is different, a bit crazy and a proper original. The other thing, a franchise I can’t talk about yet, will be huge for us too. We are finalising the contract at present.”
McGarvey said 10 will have to move quickly on the new franchise to get it up for the very end of Q4.
She thinks the strong end to the year will see these two new 10 arrivals work well together. “One of them is new, one of them is a bit more familiar.”
Of programs that are returning this year, McGarvey spoke enthusiastically about both The Bachelor and Australian Survivor which are either in production or post-production currently.
“This year we purposely cast a different character to be The Bachelor [after the controversial Honey Badger last year]. Coming off the back of last year we needed to pivot slightly to do something different.
“Angie as The Bachelorette has many of the qualities from our two previous highest ratings seasons which featured Sam Frost and Sophie Monk. Angie comes with a girl-next-door likeability, but also humour. And she is genuinely looking for love.”
Complimenting these major franchises will be programs like One Born Every Minute, Trial By Kyle and Rove’s Saturday night show slated toward the end of the year.
Dramas include a second season of Playing For Keeps, My Life Is Murder with Lucy Lawless and the recently announced The Secret She Keeps.
“We have a lot of content. Big entertainment shows at 7.30 and then more innovative and diverse ideas later in the evening. Things like BodyHack 2.0 and Taboo.”
McGarvey noted they also have scripted comedy.
“We have a lot of different things. With the audiences so demanding and fragmented these days you have to really have to service them with a range of options.”
Much of the US CBS drama content goes straight to 10 Bold now where it is having a big impact. “Bold has had 18 weeks of consecutive growth and is doing great business for us. Having a secure pipeline of really great product from CBS allows us to invest in other places.”
10’s focus on Q4 will be aided by its major sporting events in that part of the year. Expect wall-to-wall promos for The Masked Singer and the mystery franchise to run during the Rugby World Cup and the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
One of 10’s marquee days will be Derby Day from Melbourne during the day and then the Rugby World Cup that evening at 8pm from Yokohama. Mark November 2 in your diary now.
Perhaps 10’s biggest challenge with so much content about to be unloaded is how to market it all. “That is why The Masked Singer appeals to us because it creates a viral campaign for us. In other markets the big question has been, who is behind the mask? It almost takes on a life of its own in terms of publicity. It just takes off on social.”
McGarvey added: “Making a great show is only half the battle. Getting people to find it is equally challenging. Sometimes it can take an audience longer to find something and you have to be patient to let them get there.”
Top Photo: The Secrets She Keeps: Jessica De Gouw and Laura Carmichael