Saturday Night Live helped make YouTube famous and Tina Fey’s recent appearances have led to big traffic spikes at NBC.com and Hulu.
So why shouldn’t the long-running comedy show have its own Web site?
Seth Meyers spilled the beans last week on an ESPN podcast that the new SNL site would feature clips of show sketches, including material never before aired.
A move like this makes sense. Viacom has built branded sites around its most popular shows, such as The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. The idea is to build Web sites under the names that people already know. Why make them scour a site like Hulu, Yahoo or AOL to find the material they want?
Not only does a branded Web site make it easier to find material but it also does a better job promoting shows online than a portal, which must promote lots of different shows. An SNL site would have fared well as a result of Fey’s impersonations Sarah Palin, the Republican vice presidential candidate.