A Lucky Couple Is Getting Married Live on Bravo, and America Is Picking the Fiat They Drive Home

 Oh, I suppose some people still get married the ordinary way. Minister, church, flowers, possibly even spouses of the opposite sex. But the norm seems kind of too normal, as Bravo viewers of “Watch What Happens Live” have discovered about a lot of things, including exchanging vows.     

“WWHL" with the irrepressible Andy Cohen announced on Sunday night that the lucky couple chosen to be married live in the show’s funky Clubhouse are Kristie Banks and Matthew Spaeth. What could have tipped it in their favor? God knows. But when Matthew confided, “I could have never planned a more perfect wedding than having it at the Clubhouse. We never foresaw ever getting married at a church,” it might have sealed the deal.

For Bravo and Andy not to mention Kristie and Spaeth, the October on-air nuptials is a big deal but for Bravo it’s even a bigger deal because it has assembled a massive  interactive campaign with Fiat, working with Innovid’s special advertising technology. The lucky couple will win lots of other things, decided by viewers, who are also going to be solicited online for many other important wedding decisions, with Fiat ads lurking around. (Some more intimate decisions, we presume, might be a left to Kristie and Matthew.)

Viewers will decid te on decorations, music, and even the kind of Fiat 500L the couple gets.  What a perfect platform for Fiat, flashing its features for lovey-dovey viewers who want to make a perfect experience for the new, official Andy Cohen-certified married couple.  

Talk about engagement.  Fiat and Bravo would seem to be taking it one step beyond that.

 Bravo has created an on-air vignette with newly engaged “Orange County” star Gretchen Rossi, who made a  30-second pre-roll that serves as a teaser to look at more pre-planning for the wedding, —and no doubt  offering tabs where viewers can see even more about the Fiat. Car videos work nicely for guys, and I presume, you throw in some promos into a wedding-themed promotion and you’ll get women watching,  too.  (This is said fully realizing women are right near the business end of the car buying decision funnel.  Don’t attack me. Somehow, I think they’re not as high in the car commercial-viewing queue, and I think Fiat is aiming at youg people and women, and probably, ideally, both.

The trick is that Bravo is mushing together the online ads with its Bravo talents in a way that is “seamless and interactive for fans,” says David Kaplan,  VP of Bravo research. He acknowledges that the average click-through rates for ordinary pre-rolls can be “pretty abysmal.” But when Bravo has done interative ads with high profile host from Bravo series,  they’ve seen the positive  result s echoing with consumers as much as six months later.

Kaplan says with  four previous co-branded interactive campaigns Bravo has found its interactive co-branded units to deliver:

  -- A 69% higher user interaction rates on average vs. the Innovid pre-roll norm, and 259% higher than standard pre-roll norm;

-More time spent  –37 second on average-- on top of the original ad’s length itself.

--And a 45% increase in ad awareness and 19% gain in purchase intent.  

Jamie Cutburth,  vice president of  partnership marketing, says he wants Bravo to be known for the Never Been Done Before event. 

“We pride ourselves on being first to market. When we look at advertisers’ objectives, they’re looking  for fun and exciting, and that‘s a great place to get their message across. We know in this case we have a super-niche audience”—a live late night talk show that goes far, far out, topically.

So as it turns out, Kristie and Matthew must know everything they’re getting into-- except the exact kind of Fiat they’ll drive home.

pj@comcast.net

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