The Non-Fiction Pitch Guide: W Network

Pitching to the W Network? Find out what does and doesn't work for the Corus net here first.

VIBIKA BIANCHI,
Vice President, Original Programming, Lifestyle, Reality, Factual

WHAT SHE’S LOOKING FOR:
The Corus Entertainment-owned W Network skews female but wants to keep other family members in the room, so it opts for broader-based programming. As a result, Bianchi says the home will be a central focus for W in the year ahead.

“In addition to real estate, design, and renovation, we’re looking at the home beyond that,” she offers. “We’re also looking at your mortgage, your finances, shopping for your home, entertaining in your home. It’s basically, ‘home is where the heart is.’”

As for the tone of programming, Bianchi says “upbeat, lighthearted, fun, while informative” content is a home run for W, and the net is also interested in dabbling in more dramatic fare.

“We might have more competition, more conflict.”

WHAT DOESN’T WORK:
“We steer away from anything that is too life-stage focused,” says Bianchi. “So anything about parenting or weddings, for example.”

And in keeping with a broader focus aimed at keeping hubby and kids in the room, the net is also moving away from “things that are a little too female focused,” says Bianchi. Thus, programs geared more towards beauty or fashion are a better fit for sister network Cosmo TV.

One-offs are also a rarity on the W Network.

HOW TO PITCH:
Bianchi advises producers to first contact production coordinator Camille Djokoto at camille.djokoto@corusent.com. From there, an informational phone call can be set up with a W production exec who can explain the net’s needs more fully.

“Once you learn a little more about what we’re doing, we move on to sending in one-sheets or pitches or email correspondence with our production executives,” says Bianchi.

From realscreen magazine.