Friday August 4 2017
Husskie founder and editor Yelena Fairfax is the special guest on this week’s episode of the Seven Days podcast with Mediaweek’s James Manning and Kruti Joshi.
Joining James Manning and James Daggar-Nickson on the show:
• Russel Howcroft, Chief Creative Officer, PwC
Sky News Business Channel
Channel 602: Foxtel
|ABC ME||0.6%||7mate||3.0%||GEM||2.0%||ELEVEN||3.0%||Food Net||1.0%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||Ten Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC||9.4%||7||19.8%||9||19.7%||10 NNSW||2.9%||SBS One||5.3%|
|ABC ME||0.7%||7mate||4.2%||GEM||3.2%||ONE||3.7%||Food Net||1.3%|
|THURSDAY METRO ALL TV|
Shares all people, 6pm-midnight, Overnight (Live and AsLive), Audience numbers FTA metro, Sub TV national
Source: OzTAM and Regional TAM 2017. The Data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) without the prior written consent of OzTAM
16-39 Top 5
18-49 Top 5
25-54 Top 5
Seven managed to lift its Thursday share week-on-week, and its 18.4% last night was its best Thursday primetime share in five weeks. The network also managed to rank #1 with combined channel share on 28.9% with 7TWO leading the way on 4.6% thanks to Father Brown who has been driving ratings on both 7TWO and the ABC.
Home and Away finished its week on 733,000 to be the #1 non-news show.
Delinquents Make You Laugh Out Loud was over 500,000, up slightly from 498,000 watching the format last week.
The Front Bar got the 8.30pm slot in some markets with a very strong 266,000 watching in Melbourne. The program enjoyed its last night before the return of The AFL Footy Show on Nine next week.
All Round To Mrs Brown’s did 454,000 with different timeslots around the network including 8.30pm in Sydney and Brisbane.
Unpaid road tolls and a baby formula frenzy were highlights on A Current Affair while host Tracy Grimshaw also paid tribute to retiring Laurie Oakes. The show continues its good week with 881,000 which was a Thursday high for 2017.
Live NRL screened in some markets. The match averaged 235,000 in Sydney and 147,000 in Brisbane.
RBT had 342,000 viewers in AFL markets while the 2014 movie Non-Stop did 212,000 in those same markets.
Tim Blackwell was a guest reporter and there were also some very cute huskies on The Project. The second half of the show averaged 538,000.
Episode four of The Bachelor was on 726,000, which is close to the 739,000 watching on Thursday a week ago. Social media is full of banana cream pie action from the episode today!
Common Sense then started just before 9pm with 327,000, another week-on-week slide, down from 357,000.
The channel has put foodies back in the 8pm slot. Short Cuts To Glory debuted with 354,000 as Jill Dupleix showed host Matt Okine how to cook the perfect roast lamb. Next week the busy Okine visits Neil Perry. Okine stepped off a plane from Montreal Comedy Festival on Monday morning this week and later in the day was presenting his other new series The Other Guy at the Stan showcase.
Pulse remains one of the best dramas on TV at present and last night’s episode was a cracker taking viewers on an emotional rollercoaster ride. The show deserves a bigger audience with 404,000 last night after 470,000 last week.
Also deserving of a few more viewers is Cleverman, which ended its second season with 114,000.
No wonder other broadcasters are getting angry – SBS featured some good shows worthy of any channel last night.
Michael Portillo pushed the audience needle to 400,000 with a wonderful episode of Great British Railway Journeys as he travelled through Wales. SBS took the opportunity to remind viewers he returns to the 7.30pm Tuesday timeslot soon too.
At 8pm was the first episode of the new season of Gourmet Farmer which will track Matthew Evans moving to a new Tasmanian property where he will build a home and a restaurant. Episode one did 318,000.
Global Junk Food then did 242,000 followed by Versailles with 114,000.
Fairfax Media is understood to be one of at least nine parties to sign up to see the financial numbers of Ten Network, as the collapsed free-to-air broadcaster’s advisers call for indicative bids by the end of August, reports The AFR’s Max Mason.
Sources close to the sale process noted they did not believe Fairfax was serious about acquiring Ten, the home of MasterChef and Gogglebox. Rather it was taking the opportunity to have a look at the metropolitan broadcaster’s numbers.
Others to have secured an information memorandum include Oaktree Capital Management, which helped keep Nine Entertainment out of administration in 2012 via a debt-for-equity swap. New York-based hedge fund Anchorage Capital Group, private equity and distressed debt firm Lone Star Funds, US studio CBS, Lachlan Murdoch‘s Illyria and Bruce Gordon‘s Birketu have also picked up Ten’s documents.
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Administrators of collapsed education company Acquire Learning have sold its single biggest asset – online job search site CareerOne – to a media group, reports Fairfax Media’s Lucy Battersby.
Cor Cordis announced on Thursday it had sold Acquire’s 90% stake in CareerOne for an undisclosed sum to Octomedia. Creditors will discover the sum at the next creditors meeting in September.
Octomedia’s chief executive Oliver Ranck said the purchase was the “perfect marriage” for its business, which publishes industry titles such as Inside Retail, Inside FMCG (fast moving consumer goods), Inside Small Business, and a magazine for charities and not-for-profits called Third Sector.
CareerOne was launched in 1999 by News Corp, which then turned it into a joint venture with job search site Monster Worldwide. Acquire Learning bought a 65% stake in June 2015 for $20 million. It then increased this to 90%, with the remaining 10% still held by Monster.
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Southern Cross Austereo is believed to have pulled out of releasing its monthly revenue to Deloitte. Deloitte compiles monthly share figures for members of Commercial Radio Australia, which tracks how the sector is performing. It is believed radio sales revenue updates will now be available twice a year.
CRA also uses the data to update the market on total commercial radio metro sales figures every month.
Mediaweek was unable to confirm the news with either CRA or SCA this morning.
CRA last released monthly data on July 7 when it revealed ad revenue had been flat for the past financial year.
Advertising revenue for the twelve months ending June for the five metropolitan markets was slightly down 0.21% to a total of $773.849 million, compared to FY16. It is the first contraction in growth since 2012.
Individual markets for the financial year were: Sydney up 0.81% to $240.334 million, Melbourne up 0.27% to $238.201 million and Brisbane up 0.02% to $121.501 million. Adelaide was down 4.38% to $68.224 million and Perth down 1.02% to $105.588 million.
If a broadcaster withholds monthly sales data from Deloitte it could mean the end of monthly sales updates from CRA and it prevents other broadcasters from getting a sense of where the money has gone.
The Canberra Airport Advertising Concession, attracting three million passengers per annum, represents two milestones for QMS. The first is geographical expansion into the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) and secondly a move into the prestigious airport media category as part of QMS’ growing multiplatform engagement strategy.
QMS managing director and CEO Barclay Nettlefold said: “Our new partnership with Canberra Airport is the result of a development led approach and strategic meeting of the minds, and represents a significant milestone for QMS as we continue to strengthen our portfolio of premium assets and geographical expansion to provide advertisers with quality multiplatform engagement opportunities to connect with their audience.”
The announcement comes as Nine prepares to overhaul the 9Now brand to be closer to the Channel Nine brand and drive up consumer awareness of the platform.
“Nine has led the Australian television industry in asking consumers to sign on and this data is hugely important for both a better consumer and advertiser experience,” said Alex Parsons, Nine’s chief digital officer.
“We have smashed through the four million sign-up mark and this represents not only another important milestone in the growth of our broadcast video on demand business but also our broader data strategy. We are also heartened to see our unique audience continuing to grow in the Nielsen Monthly Online Ratings.”
The most recent Nielsen Monthly Online Ratings showed that 9Now was the number one commercial broadcast video on demand platform in Australia in June with a unique audience of 2.349 million.
The brand overhaul will see the 9Now logo aligning with the Channel Nine logo to allow for seamless integration with Nine’s on-air promotion.
The rebrand will also coincide with a major marketing campaign to continue to drive growth, with the first of a series of 9Now TV ads launching on Sunday.
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation will demand a spending review of the ABC and SBS in exchange for supporting the government’s media reform package, reports The Australian’s Rosie Lewis.
Parliamentary debate on the media reforms, which have unanimous industry backing, is scheduled to resume next Wednesday as the government struggles to win over enough crossbenchers to pass the bill through the Senate.
Nick Xenophon, who leads a crucial bloc of three crossbenchers in the upper house, plans to put a final “compromise” proposal to his colleagues early next week in a bid to end the Senate stalemate but the Coalition needs the support of either One Nation or the Greens for the legislation to succeed.
Senator Hanson, an outspoken critic of the ABC, said her team of four senators wanted the public broadcasters “reined in” and a review of their expenses, wages and whether the number of channels should be reduced.
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Australian television stocks and Fairfax Media experienced an early surge in Thursday trading, boosted by hopes that the Turnbull government’s media reform bill can be passed, reports The Australian’s Darren Davidson.
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The creation of a new category of not-for-profit journalism in Australia could be enough to convince crossbenchers to pass the government’s changes to media laws, report Fairfax Media’s Amy Remeikis and Lucy Battersby.
The idea of giving public interest journalism the same tax deductions as think tanks and educational organisations is already supported within some corners of the Liberal Party as well as by senator Nick Xenophon, who is in favour of tax incentives encouraging local and independent news.
The government is understood to be willing to amend laws to get its changes through, given it has spent almost a year-and-a-half languishing in the Senate, with both Labor and the Greens ruling out supporting the scrapping of the two-out-of-three rule, a key measure of the government’s package.
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The biggest lesson from ICAC’s latest disaster is for The Sydney Morning Herald – an organisation that helped trigger a futile public inquiry by publishing flawed allegations, reports The Australian’s Chris Merritt.
The Herald’s spurious allegations were one of two factors that prompted an ICAC inquiry that caused immense reputational harm and great financial cost to two men who have broken no law – businessman Charif Kazal and Andrew Kelly, formerly of the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority.
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From his early days covering state rounds for the Daily Mirror to his latest foray into the digital world with his “Turnbull does Trump” story, Oakes has been setting the agenda for Australia’s political world for decades.
He admits he’s a journalism junkie, once telling a Logies audience that he’d been mainlining his drug of choice for decades, most of it in front of a TV camera.
But now he’s stepping back, officially retiring at the close of business on August 18.
As he approaches his 74th birthday, he simply says it’s time.
There’s never been any fear on Oakes’ part in rocking the political establishment.
Oakes graduated from Sydney University in 1964 with a Bachelor of Arts, joined the Daily Mirror and took over their state rounds in 1965.
By the age of 25 he was the bureau chief in Canberra for the Melbourne Sun-Pictorial where he was on the spot for the dismissal of Gough Whitlam.
Oakes joined Channel Ten in 1975 and five years later he came to the Nine Network, where he became an institution in the Canberra bureau.
Now, as he approaches 74, he’s covered 13 prime ministers (more if you count the swaps), 20 federal elections, 51 budgets and one dismissal.
Oakes’ final day will be in a couple of weeks and he knows that it will be hard to switch off after a lifetime of politics.
“It’s an addiction,” he said.
“But now I’ll be able to devote more time to reading crime fiction.
“That will be my equivalent of a methadone program.”
WIN News senior cameraman Michael Pignataro (pictured) is amongst the nominees for a 2017 NRMA Kennedy Award.
Pignataro is one of three finalists in the Gary Ticehurst Award for outstanding TV News Camera Coverage, alongside Adam Bovino (Nine News) and Greg Parker (Seven News).
Pignataro has been behind the lens for WIN News for more than a decade and was successfully nominated for footage of a car crash, captured during a flash flood in Dapto, south of Wollongong. “I was filming the flood on the way to work and there was the sound of a collision,” the first-time finalist said.
“Seconds after the collision I saw the driver was in the care of bystanders and the truck driver was unharmed, I continued shooting. Recording the emotion and reactions moments after the crash was what I think got me over the line.”
WIN Network news director Stella Lauri said: “Cameramen are often first on the scene and work tirelessly to provide locals an eyewitness viewpoint for the news that matters to them most. The WIN Network is very proud of Michael and his work in maintaining our commitment to local news in regional areas across the country.”
Chang has a long and distinguished career as a filmmaker in the UK and Australia and joined the ABC first as the arts commissioning editor and then as head of arts, and more recently as acting head of non-scripted TV.
Recent projects have included David Stratton’s Stories of Australian Cinema, Stop Laughing…This Is Serious (series 2), and documentary strand Artsville, which has recently showcased cultural mavericks such as Mambo, Glenn Murcutt and Harry Seidler.
Chang will depart the ABC in September.
Coalition member Tim Wilson has said “everything he has to say” on the issue of same-sex marriage in what Sky News presenter and The Australian columnist Peter van Onselen says is his first ever one-question interview.
When van Onselen asked the member for Goldstein if a secret ballot was imminent, Wilson replied, “I’d rather talk about something else that actually matters to the Australian population.”
Van Onselen replied “Tim Wilson, thanks for your company”, ending the 30-second interview.
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A dedicated movie and entertainment channel, 7flix is a mix of homegrown and international television shows, children’s programs, and all-time movie greats.
7flix programming includes first run episodes of US series’ Grey’s Anatomy, How To Get Away With Murder, Scandal and The Amazing Race.
7flix also offers classic sitcoms such as Seinfeld, Big Bang Theory, The Nanny and Married With Children.
7flix will be available to viewing audiences of regional NSW, ACT, Victoria and the Gold Coast on Channel 66.
SCA’s Hit Network breakfast shows around Australia this morning revealed the details of the next RNB Fridays Live series which returns for its second year with five shows in Sydney, Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne and Brisbane this October.
Australia’s largest independent touring companies Illusive Presents and Frontier Touring have once again joined forces with Australia’s biggest radio network, The Hit Network, to bring back the event of the year.
After launching on air in 2015, the RNB Fridays radio show is now the Hit Network’s most listened-to day on air across its 43 stations nationwide and features RNB hits from the 90s all the way through to current hits.
The impressive lineup includes Craig David, Ne-Yo, Sean Paul, Kelly Rowland, Kelis, En Vogue, Mario and Christina Milian.
Tickets go on sale from August 7 with Optus Perks presale followed by sale offers from Frontier and then Hit Network.
October 13: Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney
October 14: nib Stadium, Perth
October 15: Entertainment Centre Arena, Adelaide
October 20: Hisense Arena, Melbourne
October 21: Brisbane Showgrounds, Brisbane
Yahoo7 has announced the Australian finalists for its 2017 Digital Stars program, which recognises the best up-and-coming talent in the digital media industry. The nine young guns represent the ones-to-watch from across the media agency landscape and will later this month battle it out to win a once in a lifetime trip to New York City.
The finalists include emerging hot-shots from Carat, MEC, MediaCom, OMD, Spark Foundary, Starcom and Cadreon. Four Australian winners will be chosen from amongst the following shortlist:
• Sara Louise Hilgendorf, Ecosystem Planning Manager Carat – QLD
• Stefanie Crisafi, Content & Connections Planning Manager MediaCom – VIC
• Andrew Yong Xiang Lim, Account Manager at Spark Foundry – NSW
• Vartika Arora, Campaign Engineer at Cadreon – VIC
• Kate Patterson, Digital Manager at Starcom – VIC
• Angeline Hartono, Account Manager at OMD – NSW
• Melissa Lum Wan Yin, Digital Executive at MediaCom – VIC
• Simon Allan Conyard, Digital Associate Manager at MEC – NSW
• Lara Calder-Potts, Activation and Investment Manager at Carat – NSW
In the next stage in the search for three winners, the finalists will take part in the Digital Stars Throwdown finals event on Thursday August 24 at Yahoo7 HQ, in Sydney.
To support your favourite finalist, register to attend Digital Stars Throwdown via yahoo7.com.au/digitalstars.
Tickets are free, with canapés and drinks provided throughout the event. Those who are outside of Sydney can watch and vote via livestream from the site on the night.
• Foxtel Arts and Foxtel Smooth to share broadcast signal
• Lifestyle YOU closing as programming moves to Lifestyle and Arena
• Around 12 staff depart after business review
Foxtel has announced that, from October, there will be scheduling changes to its linear channel lineup with Foxtel Arts and Foxtel Smooth channels sharing a broadcast signal and key Lifestyle YOU programming making the move to Lifestyle and Arena.
The announcements were accompanied by the departure of some key staff members, including programmers and creatives.
Effective October 11, both Foxtel Arts and Smooth will share the same broadcast signal, while still occupying two channel numbers (133 and 806). The two channels will be day-parted, with Smooth programming throughout the day and overnight from midnight to 6pm and Foxtel Arts content scheduled from 6pm to midnight, daily.
Lifestyle YOU will cease broadcasting with key programming moving to The Lifestyle Channel, Arena and On Demand.
“We have taken this decision because it makes a lot of sense both in financial terms and audience optimisation,” said Brian Walsh, Foxtel’s executive director of television.
“Foxtel Smooth’s peak audiences are in daytime, while for Arts, audiences tune in during the evening, so this is really about combining the best of both worlds for our customers. Yes, this is consolidation. However, as our television and video world continues to evolve, it is imperative we review every aspect of the business.
“Foxtel is in the business of curating and acquiring the best content across multi genres and creating strong super channels which serve a wide variety of tastes. The new Smooth/Arts combo and the streamlining of Lifestyle YOU are examples of that,” he said.
The change comes just one week after Foxtel Arts received the ASTRA Channel Achievement Award for its showcase of the arts, artists and their creative achievements.
Foxtel Smooth/Foxtel Arts will continue to be broadcast at two channel locations on the Foxtel platform, at both Channel 133 and Channel 806.
This change also means that, for the first time, Foxtel Arts will be available to all Foxtel customers, irrespective of their subscription package.
IAB Australia and Nielsen last week switched on Digital Content Ratings (DCR), providing publishers, agencies and marketers with daily digital audience data for the first time. The milestone places Australia at the forefront of global digital measurement.
The data will be available on a three-day delay, with Tuesday’s day-one data available on Friday.
The all-star team showcasing the new measurement service in front of audiences of media and then the digital and advertising sector included News Corp’s Nicole Sheffield, IAB’s Vijay Solanki and Gai Le Roy, Nielsen’s Monique Perry and Alex Smith and MFA representative, Bundanoon-based research guru, John Grono.
IAB CEO Solanki said: “The Australian digital industry – which now accounts for half of all advertising spend – has always been world-leading in the area of digital measurement. DCR is a game changer for the industry because it is daily, people-based and independent. It’s good for publishers and gives more precision to advertisers. It also helps create more transparency and more confidence for digital.”
Sheffield, chairperson of IAB Australia and CDO, News Corp Australia, said, “The daily trading metrics will enable publishers and agencies to pivot and take action during campaigns and respond to daily brief cycles. This brings digital in line with other media reporting daily ratings metrics. Importantly, DCR also measures ‘off-platform’ audiences, meaning for the first time as a publisher, I can attribute audiences consuming content off-platform to my overall unique audience number.
Photo: Alex Smith, Monique Perry, Vijay Solanki, Gai Le Roy
TV critic Andrew Mercado’s rundown on what to watch on the box next week:
Desperate for another cooking franchise (because apparently MKR isn’t enough), Seven is dusting off Gordon Ramsay’s cooking competition series which started in 2004… but limps onto screen without Gordon Ramsay. Instead, this local version will be hosted by Marco Pierre White, who we are told made Gordon Ramsay cry once, so therefore he must be the perfect replacement.
The “celebrities” (because several of them cannot be classified as cooks) include failed radio star Sam Frost (one show, two timeslots, zero audience), blink or miss Real Housewife of Melbourne Pettifleur Berenger (she “quit” after just one season), out-of-work actor Lincoln Lewis (he last worked on Gallipoli in 2015) and unknown Brit reality star Gaz Beadle (he’s from Geordie Shore and something called Ex On The Beach).
There is also David Oldfield who has been rewarded for his horrendously rude behaviour to all the indigenous people he met on SBS’s First Contact last year. His publicity-mad wife Lisa told the press this week that “a number of production companies” have approached them about a future reality show they could both star in. Sydney Confidential may be desperate enough to fall for such nonsense, but most people don’t talk about such shows before they’ve signed on the dotted line… you know, just in case it doesn’t work out. And given Foxtel boss Brian Walsh publicly slammed Lisa for being “nasty”, one has to wonder what network is left for it to air on because when Walshie slams anyone like that, it’s time to look for a new profession.
Blue Murder blew viewers away back in 1995 with its shocking true tale of crooked cops and the underworld figures they mixed with. Now a second series focuses on the most crooked of them all: Roger Rogerson, who is still being brilliantly portrayed by Richard Roxburgh. Other original actors back to reprise their roles (albeit rather briefly) are Peter Phelps and Tony Martin but in the years since this first arrived, the docu-crime genre has been done to death on Australian TV.
Killer Cop has a top notch Aussie cast but many of them are back in familiar territory, given Matt Nable, Dan Wyllie, Aaron Jeffrey, Damian Walshe-Howling, Aaron Pederson, Robert Mammone, Justin Smith, Steve Le Marquand and Emma Booth have all also done various instalments of Underbelly in between. In other words, Blue Murder 2 is good but just not as startlingly original as it once was.
The tagline for this is “Make America Bait Again”, but the real Trump baiting could be in setting this movie not just in the US but also Rio, Tokyo, Bulgaria, Rome, England and… wait for it… Australia. Before Fox News works itself into another lather about Hollywood not being patriotic anymore (let us not forget they took exception to Wonder Woman not fighting on American soil for her first movie), Olivia Newton-John is in it and her casting makes it all beyond criticism. Daughter Chloe Lattanzi is alongside her playing a “brilliant scientist” even though she looks more like the daughter of UK Page 3 girl Katie Price these days, and yes, Katie gets a cameo in this as well. As does Fabio who plays the Pope but Lisa Wilkinson and Karl Stefanovic just get to play themselves. Sounds like fun. But seriously, could Karl be any busier on a Monday?
Kym Niblock has been appointed chief product and information officer at TVNZ. Niblock was previously the chief executive at the subscription video-on-demand service Lightbox owned by the dominant telco Spark. She left last September amid restructuring of the service. TVNZ CEO Kevin Kenrick said Niblock was responsible for growing Foxtel’s IPTV business in Australia and was head of broadcast operations for Sky UK. She starts at TVNZ on Monday.
Accounting firm EY is expected to soon break its silence over the future of its business journalism awards. News media companies – including National Business Review, NZME and Fairfax – have withdrawn entries over EY quashing a story about one of its clients. Business writer Rebecca Macfie withdrew as judge saying one entry was not going to be recognised “because of the problems fall-out from the story was creating for EY”. The article by former National Business Review reporter Karyn Scherer alleged accounting irregularities at the New Zealand operations of a multinational. EY has refused to comment for more than a week. The row has raised questions about whether the awards can be revived this year, or in the future.
Wellington digital effects studio Weta Digital has begun work on four Avatar sequels, following on from the original move that earned $2.7 billion on the global box office. Producer James Cameron, who lives near Weta part owner Peter Jackson in the rural Wairarapa district, said that since making the first Avatar, “Weta continued to prove themselves as doing the best CG animation, the most human, the most alive, with the most photo-realistic effects in the world.”
Avatar producer Jon Landau said the four sequels “promise to be even more ambitious than the first film”. Weta’s Director Joe Letteri added, “The four Avatar sequels are being filmed simultaneously, with pre-Christmas releases scheduled for 2020, 2021, 2024 and 2025.”
New Zealand On Air is funding a non-commercial website aimed at children aged five to nine. The website is taxpayer funded through New Zealand On Air and managed by TVNZ. It is aimed at children who are watching less broadcast TV. The site will launch in March. No name has been chosen yet.
The upcoming election looks set to be a boon for Kiwi media. Local media questions about new Labour leader Jacinda Ardern‘s baby plans sent traditional and social media into a spin. Three’s The Project set the ball rolling with frontman Jesse Mulligan’s authorised question of his pal, the 37-year-old leader of the Opposition. Next day AM Breakfast show sports host and former Test cricketer Mark Richardson asked less politely and was firmly told off, amidst attacks from feminists. Headlines and outrage followed globally including mentions in The Guardian and The New York Times. Ardern made a splash eight weeks short of the September 23 election. The new fizz has been gratefully received by media who were primed for a dull campaign.
Sky TV has suffered a tough year since its merger proposal with Vodafone was knocked back by the Commerce Commission. It is under pressure from sports customers and journalists who complain about high rates and its dominance of sports rights. Chief executive John Fellet enjoyed a publicity pick-me-up when Labour deputy leader Kelvin Davis said his favourite possession was his Sky remote.
Maori TV staff are accentuating the positive from Nielsen TAB ratings for televising the annual Matariki awards for Maori achievement. The estimated audience for the primetime show was 900, though the broadcaster estimates that another 4,100 watched online. Even on that basis, a $100,000 taxpayer subsidy meant it cost $20 per viewer. The public broadcaster faces challenges with the early departure of CEO Paora Maxwell and the move to new studios at the end of the month.
Australian media firms could learn from New Zealand, working with local competitors against overseas interlopers, NZME chief marketing officer Liza McNally told Mediaweek.
The former News Corp Australia marketer spent 13 years with newspaper companies. Clearly, some aspects are different – the New Zealand media market is largely unregulated with fewer players – but the concept of working with competition on occasions is timely.
NZME and Fairfax NZ sharing printing facilities is an obvious case in point, providing revenue for NZME and reducing costs for Fairfax.
Now chief marketing officer for NZME, McNally has a unique understanding of the media markets including fundamental ones balancing newsprint at the same.
“NZME has a diverse suite of brands and competitors…we can see the benefit of working together to ensure that advertisers can reach an audience,
“People were talking about the death of newspapers since I started out in marketing 21 years ago,” McNally said.
McNally joined NZME during CEO Jane Hastings’ makeover of the firm. It’s not uncommon for media firms in the current upheavals, but it was tumultuous for a company that had faced change as the significant New Zealand arm of APN News and Media.
Hastings’ team was notable for the number of woman executives involved in the creation of the new brand.
Unique in some ways, the convergence rebranding of three brands into one has been effective, within the complexities of the media world.
The publishing arm, led by The New Zealand Herald, also includes raft of regional titles in the North Island.
The Radio Network, accounting for about half of the New Zealand commercial radio sector, faces stiff competition from MediaWorks.
The deals website Grab One is a strong player in that market.
McNally has led the push to food, and says NZME is looking for potential acquisitions.
A key part of the three into one company convergence, the Auckland operation is being housed in a new purpose-built location with a high visibility in the CBD, which has had an impact, McNally said.
Beyond Auckland there has been a lot of work to combine accommodation for publishing and radio operations in the regions.
The stymied merger of NZME with Fairfax NZ will be reviewed in October, and if by chance it was successful NZME might need to adjust its brand further.
But McNally says advancing the merger is just one of seven priorities. “We have worked hard to establish it’s a corporate brand. We are now looking at complementary businesses.”
Having started her marketing career with 13 years at what was then News Limited, she has unique expertise. She says she would like to say she set her heart on the business.
In fact, while studying for a marketing degree at Deakin University, she didn’t even know that newspaper companies employed marketers. A South Australian who says she is addicted to the AFL, she made Melbourne her home. “When I started, the newspaper world was full of behemoth brands.”
McNally made a name for her work on the farming paper The Weekly Times. She was brand manager for The Sunday Telegraph, and worked with The Australian.
NcNally worked on marketing for the New South Wales group, working with the online brands along with print.
Moving to New Zealand for family reasons, she worked as a contractor on what has been arguably the most successful New Zealand rebrand of recent times, the creation of Spark from the old Telecom.
This TV podcast sees Andrew Mercado and James Manning discussing the ratings for the season final of Australian Ninja Warrior and talking about when we will likely see it next. Other shows under the microscope this week include The Block, Australian Survivor, MasterChef, The Bachelor, This Time Next Year, True Story, Kath & Kim, The Good Fight, Britain’s Got Talent, Home and Away, The AFL Footy Show and Game Of Thrones.
Julian Cress, the co-creator of Nine’s longest running reality show The Block, talks about its origination and the $10m phone call to director of television Michael Healy.