Fuse Serves Up Anti-Spokespeople for Independent-Minded Music Fans

New Irreverent Image Campaign Includes Print Blitz Starring Outsider Icons Including Tammy Faye and Sy "Hair Club for Men" Sperling
& National TV Effort

New York, NY, November 3, 2003 – Fuse, the nation's only-all music, viewer-driven network, once again defies advertising tradition and delights devotees of the unexpected with the launch today of the third phase of its irreverent image campaign.

The hard-charging underdog of the world of music television will unleash a torrent of print media appearing in outdoor advertising, a Times Square billboard and wild postings, as well as in cable and advertising trades and consumer publications, including full-page ads in the December and January issues of Blender, The Onion and Rolling Stone. The two-month-long campaign features a quartet of local and nationally-known "anti-spokespeople," including ex-televangelist Tammy Faye, Hair Club for Men founder Sy Sperling, Cleo (formerly known as Miss Cleo) and the ever-randy NYC cable television hostess Robin Byrd, waxing poetic about their unquenchable lust for Fuse.

Among the wry taglines:

  • The Sperling execution features pre- and post-hair piece photos of the late night TV favorite with the headline" "The only thing better than a club about hair is watching music videos on Fuse. Fuse – looks natural even when wet."
  • The Cleo ad reads: "I see the future and it shows you reading this ad for Fuse."
  • Sexual friend Robin Byrd's execution includes the headline: "When I watch music videos on Fuse my remote always ends up in the oddest places."
  • The Tammy Faye ad, which will also be featured on a Times Square billboard, reads: "I've seen the light. It was on TV and it has music videos on it. Fuse – #1 with Tammy, who is #3 with drag queens."

On Monday, November 17, Fuse will further extend its quirky branding and make its first entrance into traditional consumer media with a unique national four-spot television campaign parodying public service announcements targeted at teenagers. In keeping with Fuse's edgy and ever-changing image, the campaign plays with the same irreverent outsider imagery that binds together all of Fuse's prior branding efforts.
Targeting young adults, the series of spots will run on several cable networks in seven major markets, including Boston, Seattle and Cleveland, as well as on the satellite services DirectTV and Echostar. Additionally, the spots will also air on Fuse and both the print and broadcast campaigns will be promoted offline through aggressive viral campaigns, as well as at high-profile online venues, including www.fuse.tv.

Fuse President Marc Juris is excited about the new campaigns' potential to raise awareness of and reinforce his network's irreverent identity – with the press, media buyers and especially its target audience of trend-setting teens.

"The campaigns are further embodiments of Fuse's outsider sensibility," adds Juris. "Everything we do is designed to appeal to independent music thinkers, young people who have a very sarcastic view of traditional corporate culture and media, the kind of irreverence that comes through in everything from 'South Park' to Vice Magazine.

"When someone like Sy Sperling speaks, not about fake hair but real music, we play with an offbeat icon to get your attention. This campaign will really cut through the clutter and have music-lovers flipping their proverbial wigs."

The new campaign builds upon the success of the network's much-talked about May debut campaign, "Saving the Music Video" starring Sally Struthers, and its summer campaign, "The Fuse Beach House." As with the two previous campaigns, this latest dose of strategic kitsch was created by New York-based advertising agency Amalgamated in conjunction with Fuse. The network selected David Carson to direct the television spots that were directed by and produced by Team Heavy.

About Fuse
Fuse is the nation's only all-music, viewer-influenced television network, featuring music videos, exclusive artist interviews, live concerts and specials — all rooted in the music experience. Fuse reflects the rapidly changing interests and attitudes of its 12-34 year-old audience by uniting the media platforms that are at the center of their communication and entertainment – TV, online, and interactive games – and by incorporating their opinions and suggestions into its on-air and online programming. More information about Fuse is available at www.fuse.tv.

About Rainbow Media Holdings LLC

A leader in sports, news and entertainment programming, Rainbow Media Holdings LLC is a subsidiary of Cablevision Systems Corporation (NYSE:CVC). Rainbow owns and manages national networks: AMC, Fuse, IFC (The Independent Film Channel) and WE: Women's Entertainment, as well as Mag Rack, a collection of on-demand video magazines. Rainbow's other businesses include its regional programming services — MetroChannels, News 12 Networks and Rainbow Sports Networks – in addition to the Rainbow Advertising Sales Corporation and Rainbow Network Communications. Rainbow is a 50 percent partner in Fox Sports Net.

Press Contacts

  • Sal Cataldi
    Cataldi PR
    (for Fuse)

  • Theano Apostolou

  • Rob Shuter
    Dan Klores
    (for Fuse)

  • Artwork is available for download at: http://fuse.tv/press/press.html