Land Rover Launches Internet TV Channel in USA, UK

19 April 2006

"The challenge is to bring the brand into the 21st century, using the internet as a medium," hypes Land Rover's Steve Hobbs. "It's an ambitious project and a leap of faith."

Hobbs flights of purple prose are not driven by a breakthrough in automotive technology. His rococo phraseology refers to a new Land Rover marketing initiative - Go Beyond TV a branded entertainment internet channel.

Hobbs, a Briton who at one time edited the UK edition of GQ, now labors for Ford as editor of broadband content - his ambition for which is for "editorial, not marketing, to bring out the sense of adventure that is at the heart of the brand."

Warming to his throbbing theme, Hobbs says he seeks to foster an online "community" wherein spectators can start uploading their own adventures. One aspect of the Webcast will reinforce the Land Rover message that breaking personal boundaries gives one a sense of "personal achievement . . . it makes you relook at yourself."

The new channel will feature shows from partners such as Discovery Channel and the BBC, with original content that "goes beyond mud-plugging".

Journalistic cynicism aside, Hobbs succeeds admirably in his aim. The channel impresses as potent marketing. Initially viewers will be redirected from the site, which Hobbs claims receives about twenty million hits per year. "Ultimately," he says, the new channel "will stand alone."

Data sourced from AdWeek (USA); additional content by WARC staff