I’m on CNN

Julie Daniels Tamasy writes:

“Hey Mike,

We’ll have to assume there aren’t many of those “I’m Mike Rowe” tee shirts…”

Hi Julie. I’ll have to assume you’re correct. To my knowledge, they are four, and I think I have them all. I might auction them off for the foundation sometime soon, though it’s hard to imagine a more confusing message on the chest of a person who is not Mike Rowe, and not on CNN. But you never know. People will wear anything.

The shirt does have an interesting backstory though. I was asked to wear it in a series of promos for the coming season, and the reason was kind of fascinating. Here’s the short version.

Last year, I climbed on top of the giant CNN logo down in Atlanta to announce the launch of Somebody’s Gotta Do It and tell the country I was now on CNN – literally. In the history of promos, nothing at CNN has ever tested as well. After watching, people were almost universally amused. A remarkably high percentage said they liked the idea of a light-hearted show on a serious news channel, and an even higher percentage said they’d watch. However, 27% of those questioned immediately after watching the promo were unable to recall the channel on which my show would air. In other words, after watching me scale a giant red letter and sit atop a massive 12 foot logo for 30 seconds while saying the words, “Yep, I’m on CNN,” over a quarter of those surveyed were unable to conclude that Somebody’s Gotta Do It was in fact, on CNN.

A cynic might look at these numbers and conclude something unflattering about the species, but a marketing expert will simply try again, and hope the message sinks in. Hence the shirt, and the attached promo.


PS Somebody’s Gotta Do It airs next Thursday at 9. On….

(Don’t make me say it.)


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