Cape Town – M-Net’s (DStv 101) long-running and award-winning weekly investigative and current affair programme, Carte Blanche has started a YouTube channel, giving viewers without DStv the right to see some of it online.
Carte Blanche on YouTube loaded its first video on 21 January and has since followed it up with ongoing selected inserts from the broadcast show done by Derek Watts, Devi Sankaree Govender, Claire Mawisa, Macfarlani Moleli, as well as John Webb - who is now adding incredible international reporting from across the United Kingdom and Europe.
Content range from 12-minute inserts including exposé investigations and profile pieces, to specially produced clips for Carte Blanche's YouTube audience like Macfarlane explaining and giving tips on how people who want to send footage to the show should film it on their smartphones.
Full episodes of the Combined Artistic Production produced show are however not shared.
It's not clear what the strategy and reasons are behind Carte Blanche's latest platform and brand extension – M-Net was asked multiple times over many weeks – but adding some content to YouTube will clearly have a two-fold impact.
Firstly, the venerable 30-year old show is getting a large new sampling factor and more additional exposure beyond pay-TV viewers. With literally thousands of views, many people have already watched the combined and growing collection of Carte Blanche videos in just a month and a half.
Secondly it might help drive uptake of DStv Premium under consumers who see the programme with its quality content that is only for top-tier subscribers and who want to get M-Net.
It's the same phenomena as the 290 000 views that the first episode of The Bachelor South Africa got – also on M-Net – after the entire first episode was placed on YouTube, dramatically helping to drive interest, buzz and sampling of that brand-new show.