David VanderWaal, head of marketing for LG Electronics USA, spoke to Dealerscope about the partnerships that will result in the 4K streaming by Amazon Digital Video later this fall of the “Cheek to Cheek LIVE!” Lincoln Center concert performance by Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga recorded this summer.
Dealerscope: Please provide a little background on how this partnership came about.
David VanderWaal: There are multiple components of why this was attractive to us. We wanted to make sure we were hitting on a partnership that was relevant to consumers.
LG was looking for a way to be extremely forefront in the 4K/UHD revolution. We felt the most fertile territory to address was that people still didn’t understand where their 4K content would come from. So when this opportunity came up, we thought it would be a great way to help us help the consumer know that 4K content is coming and in fact, is already here. The concert recorded will be streamed out via Amazon Instant Video as a conduit for the content. Comprehensive QC was done by Amazon, to assure that their pipeline can handle 4K. That was one of the main reasons we went into the sponsorship together. Tony and Gaga are a great duet to be involved with, from a brand perspective.
The other part of the partnership allows us to have some exclusive footage—we are the exclusive consumer electronics sponsor—but that also gives us rights to the exclusive content. So later this year, once Amazon pipes out the content, we will have availability of this content to play in stores.
Dealerscope: What is the significance of being the first company to collaborate on streaming a 4K concert, as opposed to a TV series or a sporting event? What demographic is LG looking to tap into with this arrangement? And when is it airing on PBS’ “Great Performances”?
VanderWaal: I believe it will air on PBS in late October, in Full HD 1080p. The 4K element is what Amazon is doing, and that will take place later this year, timed in front of the big fourth-quarter selling season.
One aspect of this is the attractiveness of the pipeline—that it’s readily available and that you do not necessarily need any kind of player to get it. We liked that idea. The other part is having to do with a particular series of UHD models LG has—the one with the Harman Kardon speakers integrated in the TVs. We believe that’s a great value for consumers—because they have, in one package, ultimate picture quality and the ultimate sound quality. That’s why we looked for 4K content that had sound as a really big component with the video.