Duh: The NY Times’ David Carr asks the question this morning, “Can Maxim Translate to TV?” Carr, despite being the nation’s leading newspaper reporter covering the magazine beat (non-rumor-columnist category), unfortunately tries to shoe-horn a “trend” into his story:
The history of creating successful magazine crossovers is an inauspicious one, as Vibe, for example, expensively discovered with its ill-fated late-night talk show in the late 1990’s. A magazine’s particular sensibility is often difficult to render on television, and even if those problems are solved, magazine-based programming must break through the growing clutter in the cable and broadcast television market. Producing one or two specials a year is not likely to create a significant revenue stream because in broadcasting, as in publishing, a media brand has to be able to keep consumers coming back to create a viable business.
Well, one or two specials CAN create a significant revenue stream if one clearly defines what “significant” is. What does Sports Illustrated generate from its “making of the swimsuit issue” specials? Is that not considered “significant” because of the size of AOL-Time Warner? What about the Billboard Music Awards? VNU is smaller than AOL-Time, so is that revenue “significant”? I could work my way down, but you get the point.
As for Maxim’s ability to attach its name to a successful broadcast property, my professional analysis would lead me to conclude that programming featuring football and Maxim models together would likely appeal to the 18-35 year-old redneck male demographic. (Okay, I’m just guessing.) Of course, I would have to do more research of the programming to be sure.