Television Brandcasting: The Return of the Content-Promotion Hybrid, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Television Brandcasting

The Return of the Content-Promotion Hybrid, 1st Edition

By Jennifer Gillan


276 pages

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Television Brandcasting examines U. S. television’s utility as a medium for branded storytelling. It investigates the current and historical role that television content, promotion, and hybrids of the two have played in disseminating brand messaging and influencing consumer decision-making. Juxtaposing the current period of transition with that of the 1950s-1960s, Jennifer Gillan outlines how in each era new technologies unsettled entrenched business models, an emergent viewing platform threatened to undermine an established one, and content providers worried over the behavior of once-dependable audiences. The anxieties led to storytelling, promotion, and advertising experiments, including the Disneyland series, embedded rock music videos in Ozzie & Harriet, credit sequence brand integration, Modern Family’s parent company promotion episodes, second screen initiatives, and social TV experiments. Offering contemporary and classic examples from the American Broadcasting Company, Disney Channel, ABC Family, and Showtime, alongside series such as Bewitched, Leave it to Beaver, Laverne & Shirley, and Pretty Little Liars, individual chapters focus on brandcasting at the level of the television series, network schedule, "Blu-ray/DVD/Digital" combo pack, the promotional short, the cause marketing campaign, and across social media.

In this follow-up to her successful previous book, Television and New Media: Must-Click TV, Gillan provides vital insights into television’s role in the expansion of a brand-centric U.S. culture.


"Moving deftly between mid-century and the new millennium, Television Brandcasting provides a wonderfully rich view of the creative promotional forms that have shaped, and continue to shape, the branded television landscape in the US. This is comparative analysis at its best." —Paul Grainge, author of Brand Hollywood: Selling Entertainment in a Global Media Age, University of Nottingham

"Also author of Television and New Media TV (2011) Gillan details the concept of television brandcasting… Including more than 50 illustrations and schedules with series examples from each decade of US television, this volume will appeal to those interested in television; advertising, marketing, and branding; and media studies.."—C.L. Clements, Richland College in CHOICE

"Television Brandcasting makes a compelling case for why the subject must be reexamined in light of how social media and mobile devices have enable new forms of brandcasting. As television producers and networks continue to seek out new methods for translating 'social interactivity into economic value,' and consumers see our desires marketed and sold back to us in an endless circuit of content-promotion hybrids, Gillan's research will prove an even more valuable tool for navigating the contemporary media landscape." -Amanda Ann Klein in Cinema Journal Vol. 55, No. 3, Spring 2016

Table of Contents

Introduction: Television Brandcasting 1. Broadcasting Series and Sponsors2. Narrowcasting Schedules and Stars 3. Cable Brandcasting and Disney Channel’s Company Voice 4. Disney Studios’ Brand Management on TV and Blu-ray/DVD Epilogue: Twitter Multitasking, Mad-vertising, and Sustainable TV

About the Author

Jennifer Gillan is Professor of English and Media Studies at Bentley University. She is author of Television and New Media: Must-Click TV (Routledge 2010). Gillan’s articles have appeared in Cinema Journal, American Literature, Arizona Quarterly, Duke Journal of Gender Law & Policy, Columbia Journal of Gender & Law, African American Review, American Drama, and Mosaic. She has co-edited four award-winning literature anthologies—Unsettling America, Identity Lessons, and Growing Up Ethnic in America, all from Penguin Books, and Italian American Writers on New Jersey, from Rutgers University Press.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Communication Studies
PERFORMING ARTS / Television / History & Criticism
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Media Studies