n. A promotional ad presented as a form of entertainment.
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NBC, which refers to its customized programming as "promo-tainment," uses stars such as actress/comedienne Tina Fey and late-night talk show host Conan O'Brien to introduce segments.
—Shahnaz Mahmud, “Anytime, Anywhere,” Adweek, February 04, 2008
1996 (earliest)
But we also invented what we call promo-tainment." They are promos, all of it deals with our programming, but they can't be hard promos. The audience will just tune out; the remote makes it so easy.

"So we make them fun, silly, crazy, something so you never quite know what's what — Jim Lange from The Dating Game talking about Frasier and Roz, someone from 3rd Rock From the Sun lip-synching to a Tom Jones song. We'll do whatever we think will keep people from reaching for the remote.
—Tom Maurstad, “ZAP!; After 40 years, the remote's changed much more than channels — it's changed your life,” The Dallas Morning News, June 16, 1996
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