AMC Networks Highlights its New and Returning Content, with a Focus on its Addressable Advertising Products

By Stefanie Morales

AMC Networks hosted a tailored agency presentation across the IPG umbrella covering the entire brand portfolio of AMC, BBC America, IFC, Sundance, and WE. AMCN opened with a side-by-side strategy of viewers and partners.

Focusing on viewers-first, the network highlighted the importance of “fandom” and the shows/content that impact culture. To that point, the network introduced a four-prong approach to delivering content: Premium Originals, AMCN Digital, Audience Targeting, and the in-house studio Content Room.

On the programming side, three of brand’s flagship series will air their final seasons in 2021-22. AMC’s first scripted hit The Walking Dead will conclude with season 11, while Better Call Saul will end with season six. BBCA’s Killing Eve will wrap up its successful run with season four. In addition, production is back in full force for over 40 original series across the five networks.

Several new series were announced, including:

  • Moonhaven – A sci-fi thriller set 100 years in the future, where the human race has established a utopian community on the moon.
  • Dark Winds – Psychological thriller set in the southwest in the 1970s, centering around two detectives investigating a double murder
  • Walking Dead Universe Expansion – A third spinoff of The Walking Dead, an anthology series of standalone single-hour stories
  • Anne Rice Universe – AMCN has acquired the Anne Rice collection, and the venture will begin in 2022 with a reinvention of Interview with Vampire

 
The network highlighted four of its digital originals including, two Better Call Saul off-shoots (Ethics Training with Saul and Slippin Jimmy), a Fear the Walking Dead tie-in series (Dead in the Water); and Cooper’s Bar, which follows the dream of one man to create the perfect tiki bar experience in the backyard of his LA bungalow.

Under the AMCN Digital pillar, Evan Adlman, SVP of Advanced Advertising, made clear the importance of not limiting the network’s content to their own walls and to instead partner with as many streaming platforms as possible. We believe this is strong programming strategy in a diminishing linear environment and overall shift to on-demand and CTV. AMCN Digital allows clients to buy across multiple platforms at scale, including owned streaming channels such as AMC Presents and WETV Reality, which are available on Pluto, IMDB, Sling, and Samsung Smart TVs. According to AMCN, these streaming channels bring a net-new audience that don’t watch on linear.

After the AMCN digital segment, the focus shifted to buyers, with a presentation on audience targeting capabilities. AMCN offers buyers the ability to build custom audience segments across linear and digital to deliver campaigns that can drive business KPIs. The network is part of several advanced buying platforms such as OpenAP, Xandr, and their own internal tool Mediator, providing agencies the flexibility to transact on the platform of their choosing. AMCN also offers addressable targeting across linear, VOD, and digital. Within the data-driven linear tool, AMCN offers two tracks: Precision, which optimizes an audience in real time, or Efficiency, which optimizes on a price target. Within deals, the network also offers clients attribution products to deliver impression-based or outcome-based guarantees, depending on the client’s needs.

Lastly, AMCN highlighted their in-house branded entertainment agency and content studio, the Content Room. Products offered from the Content Room include custom creatives, brand integrations (across linear and SVOD), and experiential marketing such as the Sundance Film Festival or Comic Con. The Content Room also allows brands to partner with AMCN on Purpose Driven Marketing, including supporting important cultural activism groups such as Outlier Society and Color of Change (DEI), SeeHer (fair gender representation), Conversation International (sustainability), and Save Our Stages (entertainment and arts).

Implications for Teams and Brands

  • With so many touchstone shows wrapping up in the next year, there are big cultural moments where brands may want to partner with AMC Networks. The network offers typical in-show integration opportunities and title placement across both its digital and linear properties.
  • AMCN is open and willing to new ad-buying strategies such as audience-based buying and linear addressable; brands should take advantage of the network’s capabilities to experiment.
  • The Content Room could amplify brand efforts through unique opportunities such as live events and the purpose-driven marketing initiatives. We know from our own research that consumers expect brands to be engaged with social issues and part of cultural moments.