AOL Taps Klum To Create Original Video, Blogs For Women
No stranger to high-wattage partnerships, AOL has tapped Heidi Klum to co-create original programming for women.
Klum and Full Picture Entertainment, the producers behind "Project Runway," have signed on to create video, articles, blogs, and photo galleries focusing on fashion, beauty, parenting, arts and crafts, and relationships.
"Our objective in 2011 is to make AOL the first choice online destination for women," AOL CEO Tim Armstrong said Wednesday.
Regular content posted to Klum's home page on AOL will revolve around her and her handpicked lifestyle experts.
"Right now, advice seems so scattered online," said Klum. "I have created a place on AOL that's really one-stop-shopping" for female focused content.
Today's announcement follows a number of recent acquisitions and partnership deals from AOL including the acquisition of tech-centric TechCrunch, the social software startup Thing Labs, and video platform 5min Media.
Continuing to formulate its content strategy, AOL recently appointed Amber Lawson to the newly created position of Head of Video Programming. With a special focus on the company's consumer audience, Lawson is now responsible for procuring, programming and promoting all of AOL's original video content.
Earlier this month, meanwhile, AOL and Endemol USA announced a production agreement to co-develop and co-produce new Web programming. Initially targeting female audiences, the partners aim to produce unscripted digital video content, which exploits the Web's real-time, interactive and increasingly social nature.
The first series to be produced under the new agreement is "Re-Dressed By America" -- an interactive Web series where online users make over subjects facing a life-changing event, whether it be a high school reunion, a first date, or a sex change. The series will be featured on Stylelist.com and MyDaily.com.
Closely aligning video with its overall content push, AOL has aggressively sought to establish itself in the space over the past year. Between July and November, AOL video streams increased from 192 million to 566 million -- an increase of 195%, according to comScore.
In particular, "You've Got..." -- the video series that launched on the new AOL.com in November -- generated nearly eight million views in its first month. Appearances by President Obama, Matt Damon, and Kelly Ripa helped the show's cause.