While many Web publishers keep looking for that one Webisode hit, Univision has been building a nice little trove of regular digital video content at NovelasySeries.com. Generally the site aggregates updates and clips, blogs and interactive material for the many soap operas and other dramatic series on the network. But it is also becoming a place where viewers get to see digital-only fare. In one of the more ambitious projects to date, Univision will launch on Monday the comedy series "No Me Hallo" (Finding Myself) across both the Web and mobile apps. The five-minute episodes will premiere on the three-day-a-week schedule, (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) as a novella from the same producer who brought the network is latest blockbuster "Eva Luna." That series drove the NovelasySeries.com site to a new record in March, with 1.9 million visits. The show generated 5.5 million video streams since its premiere in November.
"No Me Hallo" tells the story of Luchita, a former music star from working-class Mexican-American roots who has been betrayed by her manager and finds herself broke, divorced and moving back in with family in Ojai, California. Gee, let the hilarity begin. She moves from job to job as she tries to find herself, no doubt setting us up for a lot of quirky characters, weird bosses, and potential love interests.
The series will have its run first on the Web and in the Univision video apps, but then eventually come to the Univision primetime schedule in the form of a special.
Sponsors clearly have taken notice of Univision's success is drawing continuous audiences to its digital video fare. The "No Me Hallo" series has attracted a slate of launch supporters, RBR.com reports.
Kmart, Sierra Mist Natural and State Farm have all signed on. Product placement and digital spin-offs will be part of the mix. Sierra Mist Natural will be featured in the program and as ad units online and in the video app. A Facebook page will drive users to the series as well. Kmart will have featured the Casa Cristina bed and bath fashions. They will have a custom mini-site off the Univision site that will offer gift card prizes. And a State Farm agent character will appear in the series. Perhaps more intriguing is a State Farm-sponsored spoof series on the site that will send-up the various characters and offer a different take on the show itself.In the process of finding herself, perhaps Luchita will also help network programmers find a model for TV-quality Webisodics that keep audiences coming back for more and generate sponsor support that make them sustainable.