TVNZ's new current affairs programme, Seven Sharp, has scored itself a sponsor with RaboDirect, ahead of its premiere tonight.
RaboDirect is an internet-only bank, which would fit well with Seven Sharp's promised interactivity with online audiences through social media. However, RaboDirect general manager Mel Templeton says the show's online elements were merely a contributing factor towards sponsoring it. RaboDirect has advertised on TV since the bank launched in New Zealand in 2006, and Templeton says the company wanted a different approach to straight forward advertising in 2013.
"We were discussing it internally since [Seven Sharp] was announced, and the show presents a great opportunity to expand what we do," she says.
According to Templeton, the deal will initially be limited to billboard advertising on the show ( "name on the jersey type scenario"), and includes ad packages during the show's commercial breaks. A spokesperson for TVNZ says the show's opening and closing credits will include a RaboDirect namecheck, along the lines of "Seven Sharp is brought to you by RaboDirect, your specialist savings bank”
Templeton says she hopes to do more than just advertise in the future, expanding into running competitions, sponsored polls, and partnered charity events. The exact details around the advertising haven't been finalised yet, she adds.
"We're still getting our ducks in a row," says Templeton.
Templeton won't reveal exactly when the initial sponsorship deal was penned, or how much it is worth, but does say it was signed off very recently.
"It wasn't as soon as everyone would've liked, we waited until we could strike the best deal," she says.
In a press release sent out today, TVNZ head of sales Jeremy O’Brien says he is delighted to have RaboDirect as a sponsor.
“They were quick to see the benefits in something new and different, and we have every confidence their faith will be rewarded. Over time we expect to introduce a level of innovation in this partnership that reflects the very different nature of the programme,” says O'Brien.
Seven Sharp premieres tonight at 7pm.