It was seen by many as little more than a glorified advertorial.
Later this month TEN will screen something called The Australia Day Showdown: You Can Never Be Too Australian, a one-hour prime time special with guest Sam Kekovich airing on Australia Day.
Produced by Roving Enterprises, this is sponsored by Meat & Livestock Australia’s campaign for Australia Day, under CONNECT, the cross-platform sales division of Network TEN.
But it also follows a TEN YouTube clip using Kekovich that many claim was faked. When a wayward cricket ball hit Kekovich, the camera was apparently knocked out too. TEN even disabled comments after many criticised the clip (a big no-no in social media).
The partnership between CONNECT and Meat & Livestock Australia now raises further doubts about the clip’s authenticity and potentially damages the TEN News brand.
News department should never allow Sales departments to compromise their reputation.
It’s just not worth it.
Hosted by Charlie Pickering, two teams consisting of Kitty Flanagan, Meshel Laurie, Akmal, Tom Gleeson, Denise Scott and Lawrence Mooney will debate the topic “You Can Never Be Too Australian”.
The TEN special event will go to air at 8.30pm on January 26.
CONNECT provided a true cross-platform collaboration between Network Ten and DMG Australia, as well as “guest stars” Facebook and Roving Enterprises, to deliver a truly agnostic, cross-media campaign, fronted by “Lambassador” Sam Kekovich.
Aaron Quirk, Head of Cross-Platform Sales at CONNECT, said: “We are delighted to have won MLA’s Australia Day 2013 campaign, arguably the most coveted cross-platform deal of the year.
“The Australia Day Showdown is a perfect example of CONNECT’s ability to meet our clients’ needs in targeting a youthful audience through an integrated, innovative and tailored campaign,” he said.
MLA’s Australia Day campaign aims to promote lamb as the must-have meat for Australia Day.
Mat Baxter, Chief Executive Officer of UM Australia, said: “Every year the MLA’s Australia Day Lamb brief is arguably the most hotly contested integrated media campaign amongst media owners.
“This year CONNECT was successful because they demonstrated a really impressive understanding of the task, superior levels of creativity and most importantly a powerful approach that brings all their properties together in an organised and effective way.
8.30pm on Saturday January 26.