Fort Mill Times

Musing on a favorite show online

Amy Bennett
Amy Bennett

Jumping on the bandwagon late hasn't kept Amy Bennett from becoming a big wig in the online world of "One Tree Hill" fans.

"I got into the show when it was in its fourth season," Bennett said. "My sister loved it and kept trying to get me to watch it, so she gave me seasons one through three and I ended up watching them all in two weeks."

Now the 29-year-old mother of two young daughters is hooked. She's even blogging about it on www.onetreehillblog.com, and getting a lot of hits.

"It seems to double each week," she said. "The first week it was 100, then 200, then 400, last Sunday it was 13,000, this Sunday it was 26,000."

Her biggest days in terms of page views are usually Mondays and Tuesdays.

"One Tree Hill," a prime time teen soap opera along the lines of "Beverly Hills 90210" airs on the CW network Tuesdays at 9 p.m. In recent weeks on those days more than 30,000 visitors have checked her blog for updates and spoilers.

When she's not blogging about her favorite shows, Bennett is a programmer for Wachovia, so she already had a background in computers and Web design, which was a big help, she said.

She credits her success - by Monday she had made more than $600 off advertising on her blog so far in March - with diligence and a love for her subject. She scours other sites all over the Web to compile the most complete information she can for her readers.

"I look at a lot of different sites," Bennett said. "Tv.com, spoiler.com, the CW message boards, I try to combine them all into one big spoiler page, so people don't have to go tracking things down over a bunch of sites."

Bennett got the idea from a friend who runs a fan site for another CW show "Gossip Girl." That friend pulls in $600 to $1,000 a month in ad revenue from the site, Bennett said.

Ads on Bennett's site include one for a luxury beach community in Mexico. But it's not all about the money.

"I love the show and I can talk about it," she said.

Bennett has been blogging on "One Tree Hill" since December. Her site is already getting listed near the top results on Google for "One Tree Hill" searches.

She said she is also excited by news of a 90210 spin off, also headed to the CW.

"I'd love to get in on the ground floor with that one," she said.

The Online audience is just as important to "One Tree Hill" producer Joe Davola as Neilson ratings.

The show's executives have helped cultivate the constellation of "One Tree Hill" fan sites, blogs and message boards by supplying some Webmasters with giveaways like autographed cast photos and running show related contests with others.

"When we started six years ago the Internet was just starting to beef up," Davola said. "So we started out soliciting those sites. We wanted a very loyal fan base."

Davola said he is surprised some TV shows still don't capitalize on exposure through the Web.

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