NBC has declared plans to use season ten of The Voice to promote its latest crop of comedies, a drama and a new reality show. In a press release sent out on Friday, the network detailed how it’s scheduling previews of new series Crowded, Heartbeat and Little Big Shots as well as the return of The Carmichael Show around new episodes of its Emmy Award-winning singing competition.
The three-week marketing plan starts Tuesday, Mar. 8, when NBC will air an episode of The Voice from 9-10 p.m. before a “special preview” of the Steve Harvey-hosted kids’ talent show Little Big Shots at 10 p.m. and comedy The Carmichael Show at 10:30 p.m.
The next week on Tuesday, Mar. 15, the network will use the same post-Voice time slot to screen its Sunday comedy Crowded, starring Patrick Warburton (Rules of Engagement) and Carrie Preston (True Blood).
Then on Tuesday, Mar. 22 things shift slightly as The Voice will air a one-hour episode from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m., after which NBC will broadcast the first episode of its upcoming medical drama Heartbeat, featuring Melissa George (Hunted, Alias) as a transplant surgeon.
This is the first time NBC has publicized its intent to use the popularity of The Voice to launch its new programming, but the network has been doing so for several years. During the most recent season nine, NBC aired similar “previews” of new comedies Telenovela and Superstore after The Voice, and had Telenovela stars Eva Longoria and Jencarlos Canela interviewed during the singing competition.
Stars from other NBC or NBCUniversal projects have also popped up in the audience of The Voice on numerous occasions, including members of Dick Wolf’s Chicago procedural franchise, Katherine Heigl and Alfre Woodard for the drama State of Affairs, and Vin Diesel and Michelle Rodriguez promoting the release of Furious 7.
And other shows have been launched or re-launched in the post-Voice time slot, including The Blacklist and season two of musical soap Smash, before Blindspot turned the 10 p.m. Monday space into a bonafide hit this September.
With The Voice being the network’s biggest hit far and away, it’s not surprising that NBC is going to take advantage of it as much as possible to court viewers to other series. But now the cross-promotion (or is it post-promotion?) is getting really obvious, and the channel will also have to be careful not to alienate fans who won’t want to be hearing or seeing plugs for other shows.
Season ten of The Voice begins Monday, Feb. 29 at 10 p.m. on NBC.