Is sitting through a sponsored Coke ad worth free video-on-demand? Cox Communications Inc. is teaming with Universal McCann to find out.
Cox and Universal McCann, the media planning and buying arm of McCann-Erickson WorldGroup, will work together to explore the benefits of advertising supported VOD.
Cox's "FreeZone" offers digital subscribers on-demand access to advertising-supported content such as short independent films, action sports vignettes and interviews with local celebrities. The programming is supported by long-format, infomercial type advertising and sponsorships. Universal McCann clients Coca-Cola and Sony Music Entertainment's Epic Records have committed to participate in FreeZone advertising.
Digital subscribers in San Diego will be the first to experience FreeZone, beginning in August.
Although terms of the iTV deal were not disclosed, it is said to be the first of its kind between a cable operator and an ad agency.