‘Excitement & cross-platform uptake from sponsors’ for bisexual Bachelorette season, says Ten

Ten’s long-running reality franchise The Bachelorette returns to screens tonight, with bisexual Brooke Blurton taking her shot at love for the show’s latest season.

Western Australian youth worker Blurton will be the star of the first-ever mixed-gender edition of the show, with both men and women competing to win her heart.

Bachelorette, Brooke Blurton (pictured)

Ten ViacomCBS Effect, partnership director, Tamar Hovagimian, told Mumbrella the response from advertisers and sponsors has been positive.

“The advertising industry’s response to our position on media responsibility in promoting and reflecting social justice, diversity, equity and inclusion, on-and-off-screen, has been positive and encouraging,” she said. “From the moment we announced Brooke Blurton as our Bachelorette, we have had unprecedented excitement and cross-platform uptake from sponsors.”

Hovagimian noted that the Bachelorette Australia 2021 format opened up a lot of necessary conversations within the media and advertising industry.

“The Bachelorette Australia 2021 format changed the discussions we were having with brands from commercial opportunities to values alignment. We are proud to be bringing Brooke’s journey in finding love to viewers, and thankful to our sponsors who are joining us,” Hovagimian noted.

Network Ten executive producer Hilary Innes agreed with Hovagimian, telling Mumbrella, while the actual format is true to the franchise and the core of the brand is the same, it’s an opportunity for advertisers to tap into an audience that’s been hard to reach previously.

“You look at a lot of advertising that’s happening at the moment, and I do think you see a change in diversity, looking at representing different cultures, different sub-communities across the board. We had an enormous amount of curiosity and support from advertisers, It’s really a great opportunity for them to reach that audience,” Innes admitted.

“It’s new in the sense that we are going into uncharted waters, in the fact that Brooke is bisexual and First Nations, however, the core of the brand is the same. We didn’t change the format, we just changed the lead. The actual format is true to the Bachelor and Bachelorette franchise,” she said.

“I really felt like the sponsors on the creative side, who jumped on board, supported that. We certainly didn’t have any issues, or a lack of sponsors,” Innes explained. ”They were jumping on board to be a part of the show, and Brooke is well known and well loved, so I think there was a bit of interest in the fact that we were bringing her back and telling a love story of a bisexual First Nations woman.”

As for how Innes thinks the general public will respond to the show, she didn’t seem to have any doubts about it leaving a positive impact.

“I’m completely excited and have no doubts at all that the audience will respond positively to the show. I think it’s great that we’re telling the story of gender-fluidity. It’s a story for now, it’s about time. I think most people are excited about it and curious. It’s something to celebrate. I have no nerves at all as to how the audience will respond,” Innes said. “I really hope this series will pave the way across the board, not just Ten but other networks for other programs to follow suit. We’re all moving into a new era, and we all need to be well equipped, open, and ready for change and to know how to do it properly.”

It’s the third year in succession that The Bachelorette producers have shaken up the tried and tested format, after two sisters appeared as joint Bachelorettes on the 2020 season.

Ten’s The Bachelorette’s sixth season’s premiere episode last year, with sisters Elly and Becky Miles, delivered an overnight metro audience of 628,000.

The previous lowest-rating season was Ali Oetjen’s 2018 series which brought in 631,000. The highest premiere the show has had to date was Sophie Monk’s 2017 season which delivered 951,000 metro viewers.

Last season of Ten’s The Bachelor premiere episode, featuring pilot Jimmy Nicholson, brought in its lowest metro ratings of any premiere episode to date for the network, with an average of 482,000 viewers tuning in to the season launch, while the finale episode saw just 629,000 metro viewers tune in.

The Bachelorette is produced by Warner Bros International Television Australia for Network Ten.

Casting for the seventh season of The Bachelorette show is now open, however no casting for The Bachelor has been announced.


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