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Peacock Chairman Says Streamer Has Had to Be Flexible for National Launch

Stephanie Sengwe

When the Peacock roll-out plan was first announced, no one could have foreseen that the world would be shutdown and that many of the events that mark the spring season would be canceled. However, those are the challenges the NBCUniversal-owned streaming service was up against when it launched to Comcast customers in April. Because people were forced to stay at home because of the pandemic, Peacock didn’t take a big hit as the streaming industry in general was seeing a spike in people watching TV.

In an interview with Deadline, Peacock chairman Matt Strauss stated the streamer was actually “in a stronger position” than they anticipated, despite the pandemic.

One of the biggest selling points for Peacock was the Olympics. The original plan was for Peacock to have a targeted launch, April 15 for Comcast’s Xfinity customers and then the July 15 national launch would follow. The national launch date was specific: NBCU would carry the Olympics on July 24, which would include ample promo messages about Peacock, introducing the streamer to millions of viewers.

However, because of COVID-19, the Olympics were postponed to next year. While this was major change for Peacock, it seems the timing may still work out for the better.

“Even though we don’t have the benefit of the Olympics this year, we’ve been able to create a new marketing campaign that in some ways is going to deliver the same amount of impressions as we were planning during the Olympics but we were able to spread it out across the back half of the year,” Strauss stated.

The new marketing campaign will still be beneficial for Peacock as it calls for “a more effective execution for us because then it maintains a cadence of promotion that doesn’t happen within a two-week period. It happens over the course of a six-month period,” Strauss concluded.

Though there are many positives that have come out of the situation, the streamer has still seen some set back. When it launches on Wednesday, Peacock will house only nine original titles across drama, including unscripted and kids, way less than expected, Deadline reports.

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