TSN leverages in-house production for Canadian Tire content deal

Nathalie Cook, TSN's VP of sales and brand partnerships, discusses the broadcaster's content deal for Sport Chek and the corporation's namesake retail brand.
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TSN has signed a three-year content development deal with Canadian Tire Corporation (CTC) that will see the sports network’s in-house production team delivering digital video for the iconic brand.

As part of the deal, which includes traditional media buys on the sports network, TSN will develop and produce exclusive content for Canadian Tire and Sport Chek marketing channels using its in-house assets. Exclusive content will also be produced for TSN’s broadcast and digital channels.

The agreement goes far beyond a traditional advertising partnership and content-driven deals are what brand clients are demanding, says Nathalie Cook, VP of sales and brand partnerships at TSN. And the specialty is in a good position to take advantage of its resources and access to premiere sports events to deliver it, she adds.

While declining to comment on financial details, Cook says the model will take advantage of marquee events such as the World Juniors (hockey), Grey Cup, FIFA World Cup and Women’s World Cup.

“They’re leveraging some of the larger properties that are going to be in Canada over the next little while,” Cooks tells StreamDaily.

TSN is not obliged to create a minimum amount of content for CTC (which also owns retailers like Mark’s, Sport Chek, Hockey Experts, and National Sports), as the intention is to stay nimble and take advantage of opportunities as they arise. “There is some content that very clearly resides in the social space and is much better suited to shorter form; but on the other hand there are times when a full documentary is really the appropriate thing to do,” Cook says.

As an example of a recent collaboration, Cook references a video TSN made for Canadian Tire’s Jumpstart charity during Game 7 of the Raptors vs. Nets playoff series earlier this month.

“We got a call on late Friday night just sort of saying “Hey, I know it’s totally last-minute but we are going to be sending some children who participate in the Jumpstart program to see Game 7.’ And we said, ‘You know what? That’s a really compelling story.’”

So TSN shot the kids arriving to Maple Leaf Square (dubbed Jurassic Park during the series) and had Sportscentre host Cabbie Richards interview the youths (pictured), and during the game TSN talent discussed the program and how viewers can get involved. By half-time, they had a two-minute clip posted on TSN’s BarDown.com.

“That content is evergreen for them now, they can use it at Jumpstart meetings, wherever they want,” Cook says.

As part of the deal announced Tuesday, original content developed will have exclusive distribution through TSN’s five broadcast channels in English-speaking Canada and the three RDS TV stations in Quebec. The videos will also be distributed digitally on TSN.ca, TSN GO, and TSN BarDown at BarDown.com, RDS.ca, and RDS GO.

In terms of how long it took to make the deal, it was not a short dance, jokes Cook, adding that Canadian Tire’s Montreal-based media agency Touche and president Karine Courtemanche helped facilitate the agreement between the companies.

From Stream