C1TV - The Evolution of a Channel...
This portion of the site (moved from the old location to this blog)
is dedicated to delineating the process design evolution. C1tv is
an alternative life
network that launched out of Miami in Early 2000.
In 1999, Tantra Productions was approached by a group of investors that gathered a small amount of capital to purchase entertainment property the would appeal to a "Gay Urban Male" between the age 24 to 45. The launch approach would be to first purchase time on local cable providers in key markets, combine it with web promo materials programming guides with links to merchandising. This approach functions exactly how paid programming like Celebrity sponsored infomercials function.
The marketing plan was to purchase the time, resell that time to other commercial ad placement to a specific niche market, eventually gaining enough capital to broadcast their own signal to satellite transmission distribution as a larger M.S.O.
My role, to design and creative direct the project from concept to launch. For me an dream come true. The years in the business taught me that it was too good to be true, clients just don't let go of this much control. Therefore, this site is dedicated to the process and evolution of a project and how funding affects and frustrates projects.
A small group always grows, with new ideas and hopefully the critical mass of dollars to keep the new project aloft. The next by product of the growth is diversion and erosion of the idea set that move the project off the original intent. All product and network launches have this same life by my observations. Few gel while others slowly bleed away, hopefully to be resurrected in a new structure and influx of funding and creativity.
As this project grew, naturally, more capital was needed and therefore more investors were added. More investors meant more opinions on how the channel should be positioned and marketed and the evolution of the network diluted through this evolution.
When the project launched, C1TV opened in 6 markets and none of those markets really took hold as an advertising vehicle, its original intent.
Several of the principles had tried this under a couple of other project names prior to C1TV. To the best of my knowledge, they continue position for a launch still holding rights to the niche programming, their main asset.
Browse the following sections to see the growth of an idea, the growth of a network identity and the process of our current communication technology dividing itself to the micro-niche of technology. Okay, this isn't Madison Avenue concepts. It is thoughtful with study and focus. What this site represents is how small markets/ideas evolve.
Again, from my position, this is the common formula I've seen on most projects lacking major funding. The fun of the site/project was developing programming niche. This newly defined market, very popular now with programming like "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy", was defined in this groups mind several years prior, but without the funding and tight overall concept.
The client had preconceived the "Brand identity" to be the Gas Pump. One of the principles had a previously attempt a launch under a name, "acme" with a similarly "uniquely" branded network. I have always felt that this pump, though random, fit the original concept of the network perfectly. "Why a gas pump" test audiences asked; the answer always came back from he same group focusing on the unique message and congnative value.
The clients left font and color to be worked in the original creative pitch. Several post-production companies pitched to the small group of investors. The difference and I supposed the success in the pitch was that our concepts and breadth of concept fit their multiple format delivery concept as well as a better understanding of their target market. So the materials on this page delineate the overall concepts. Like a litmus test, the clients reactions were sampled during the presentation. This may be "selling" to a client, criticized by associates of mine, however I do believe this is the best way to achieve a consistant vision between the creative process the principles. If these two elements are not alligned, the process will never even achieve the launch
Later, As investors were added, the logo was revisited. And typically, the rework is way off the mark. An unsophisticataed "C" with a "1" punched through it became the brand. Unfortuantly too many logos started to fight for the identity; another unfortuate by product of too many unfocused iedas with too little experience driving the vision of the "product"