Bud.TV on the Rocks

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Traffic numbers released from comScore suggest that Anheuser-Busch, after planning to sink $30 million dollars into a multimedia website, could have an afterthought on its hands. The Bud.TV portal received only 253,000 visitors last month, a far cry from Anheuser-Busch’s estimation that the site would be receiving 2-3 million visitors by the end of 2007.

Anheuser-Busch kicked off Bud.TV right after Super Bowl XLI on February 4th. The site features comedy videos and short films from Kevin Spacey’s Triggerstreet Productions and Matt Damon’s LivePlanet Productions, as well as NASCAR highlights, promotional clips for the FX network’s police drama “The Shield,” and user-created Bud Light commercials. However Bud.TV offers none of that content up-front. Visitors are greeted instead by an empty log-in screen that contains few details about the content within.

“The first week after Super Bowl, the site got an average of 20,000 visits a day, but only about 800 to 1,000 a day were registering–we think because of the registration process,” wrote Tony Ponturo, Anheuser-Busch’s VP of global media and sports marketing in an email to ZDNet. Other barriers to entry include the requirement that visitors verify they are of drinking age.

Bud.TV did see a rise in the number of registrations resulting from a banner ad campaign around President’s Day in February, according to Ponturo, but audience numbers flatlined at 15,000 per day in the site’s third week. Ponturo additionally noted that only about 1/3rd of them are registering.

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