Stephen Colbert: What's behind his Internet push for the 'Late Show'

Colbert, the incoming host of 'Late Show' following David Letterman's retirement, recently debuted a video promoting his new show. There's also now a website, Twitter account, and podcast, among other material, for the show. Here's what's most likely behind all the new promotions.

A promotional video for the upcoming CBS “Late Show” with new host Stephen Colbert has been posted in advance of Colbert’s September debut on the show. 

Much of Colbert’s video involves him saying farewell to his “colbeard.”

“As much as I enjoyed being incognito, now that we're gearing up for the beginning of the ‘Late Show,’ I need to be more cognito," Colbert says during the video. “Plus, CBS is making me shave it off because Tom Selleck's mustache has a non-compete clause.”

Colbert tries various beard styles as he shaves off the beard, including the “half-Wolverine,” in which he shaved off the beard entirely on one side of his face and left sideburns like those worn by Hugh Jackman’s “X-Men” character on the other side. (If you check out the video, be aware of language.)

The video wasn’t the only “Late Show” promotion that debuted on the Internet recently. There’s also now a website, Twitter account, YouTube channel, Facebook page, and podcast, among other material, promoting the show. 

Colbert had a tongue-in-cheek attitude about the social media campaign, according to a statement

“Say what you will about the Internet, I think it’s here to stay!" he said. "Launching puts me in the same league as, and!” 

While Colbert of course has plenty of goodwill from audiences who tuned into his Comedy Central program “The Colbert Report,” the key to this push may lie in one of Colbert’s comments while trying out different beard styles.

“What else do Millennials love?” he pondered. Colbert has his “Colbert Report” cachet, of course, but when it comes to late-night shows, audiences are now used to “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”-style of program which enjoys a very healthy Internet presence. (“The Tonight Show” has almost 3 million followers on Twitter and its YouTube channel has more than 7 million subscribers).

Plenty of Millennials are no doubt ready and eager to embrace Colbert himself. The 17,000 subscribers already signed on to the "Late Show" YouTube channel would seem to be proof of that. But creating a strong Internet presence for the show as well can’t hurt in terms of bringing on new fans.

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