Mediaweek’s holiday message: This is the final Morning Report for 2020 and the must-read newsletter returns in 2021 mid-January.
Keep in touch with media news, TV ratings and must-listen podcasts over the next few weeks with daily updates at mediaweek.com.au and on Twitter @mediaweekaus.
Big cheers to all our supporters during 2020 who literally helped keep the lights on. Season’s greetings and stay safe.
By James Manning
• Radio: “It is a brave person who reads something into one result this year”
ARN last week again claimed its #1 network position based on metro share of its KIIS and Pure Gold FM and AM stations. The broadcaster has claimed to be radio’s market leader for a ninth consecutive survey.
Speaking to Mediaweek before he closes his ratings spreadsheets for the final time in 2020, ARN’s chief content director Duncan Campbell had a similar message to Nova’s Paul Jackson.
“We are very consistent,” said Campbell. “I know that doesn’t always make for a good sexy headline, but it is what agencies want. Agencies want results and they look to a company like ARN and realise we consistently do deliver what we say we will. If there is ever a blip we make sure it is corrected pretty quickly.
“Our performance this year sets us up for a good 2021. The ongoing issues we have are KIIS 101.1 plus softer numbers this survey at WSFM and 97.3. The latter is perhaps due to an internal loss of focus plus some external factors. We are confident we will correct Sydney and Brisbane quickly.
“Regarding KIIS Melbourne, we are doing a fair bit of work to better understand what they key issues are.”
Melbourne KIIS FM breakfast hosts Jase and PJ are returning early from summer break to start work. “It’s the crunch year,” admitted Campbell.
Campbell expects the audience who moved to AM during Covid will return, claiming some have been reading too much into the change in listening habits. “But it will take time, maybe even until 2022. We are seeing a desire in audiences to get back to the norm, they don’t want a new norm.”
The network highlight as always was the performance of KIIS 1065 and its breakfast show. “Both Kyle and Jackie have been in great form. There has been stability with him in Sydney throughout the year. That has been beneficial, and he acknowledges that.”
He was similarly enthusiastic about Gold in Melbourne where Christian O’Connell has been #1 FM for over 12 months in five consecutive surveys.
In Adelaide, Campbell said the 2020 results were another example of the Covid disruption. Just a week ago, ARN announced the launch of Mix 102.3’s new show Erin Phillips & Soda for Breakfast. From January 2021, Mark ‘Soda’ Soderstrom will team up with Adelaide sporting legend Erin Phillips.
“Mix 102.3 went down in the ratings for a short period of time and you could see a lift in ABC listening as a result of that. It is a brave person who reads something into one result this year. When looking at movements you have to ask if there is a trend, and in most cases there has not. If there is it is because of a sustained Covid impact like in Melbourne.
“It may not return to exactly how things used to be – there will be some residual impact from working from home and some people being cautious about what they do. I don’t believe there will be a ‘new norm’ that some have been talking about that will change our lives forever.
“Covid has accelerated some changing listening habits, but there is still listening happening. If anything it has enhanced our digital audio future in terms of people using smart speakers for radio and podcast growth.”
While in Perth 96FM didn’t have a great survey, Campbell said it is not part of any trend. He said watching how that market plays out will be intriguing in 2021. He called the change of 92.9 to Triple M a smart move strategically for SCA.
“It does challenge 96FM in terms of the #1 rock music station. But Triple M doesn’t have great brand values in Perth since it was last in the market in the mid-90s. What they have also done is give that CHR audience to Nova and Mix. The change is very good news for Nova, and I am sure they cracked some champagne on survey day.” Campbell also noted the risks involved for SCA and the impact the change could have on former market leader Mix 94.5.
Regarding marketing spend in 2021, Campbell said it was obviously reliant on how quickly revenue returns. “We are seeing healthy signs of revenue returning from both agencies and direct clients.”
Top Photo: ARN’s Duncan Campbell with Gold’s Sue Carter, Jack Post and Christian O’Connell
Future Women and Hachette Australia have announced a two-year publishing and entertainment partnership from January 2021.
Future Women’s founder and managing director Helen McCabe (pictured) said: “It’s a joy to work with a brand who innately understands what we do, how we do it and why. Hachette Australia share our commitment to advancing women’s equality and in turn, we value their contribution to telling stories by and about women. Together we will deliver an expansive and exciting new program of events and opportunities for the Future Women membership.”
The entertainment partnership between Future Women and Hachette Australia will include regular live streamed events, a curated online book club, and International Women’s Day celebrations. Hachette Australia authors will be integrated into Future Women’s popular panel discussions, social club events, newsletters, and the annual Future Women Summit.
They will also collaborate to deliver the next four seasons of the Anonymous Was a Woman podcast, including feature interviews with authors and discussions of book themes by hosts Astrid Edwards and Jamila Rizvi.
Hachette Australia marketing and communications director Emma Rusher said: “This premium entertainment partnership connects Future Women members with our thought-provoking books, acclaimed authors and interesting ideas from around the world. With agenda-setters Helen McCabe and Jamila Rizvi at the helm, Hachette will engage Future Women’s Australian audience with content designed to entertain, inform and inspire conversation around the stories that matter to women now and in the future.”
In September 2021, the first Future Women book published by Hachette Australia will be released. It is an in-depth exploration of how Australian women’s lives have been reshaped after the pandemic, featuring the work of agenda setting and emerging authors including Jane Gilmore, Santilla Chingaipe and Emily Brooks. This follows the release of Future Women’s first book Untold Resilience in October 2020.
Future Women’s chief creative officer and best-selling author Jamila Rizvi said: “At home and at work, with friends and family, and more intimately women’s sense of themselves and their bodies has all been brought into question by the pandemic. This book is a rallying call to make the future better than the past.”
A second work of non-fiction by Future Women will be published by Hachette in 2022. Hachette publisher-at-large Louise Adler said: “I’m delighted by the publishing partnership we have formed with Future Women. Helen McCabe and Jamila Rizvi are women of the future. They understand the aspirations, challenges and hopes of women and I’m confident the books we create together will influence the national conversation.”
This year has been like no other but Australian brands have powered through to inform, entertain and stay connected. To celebrate, Twitter has shared its standout campaigns of the year.
LEGO and Stars Wars Day
“@LEGO_Group connected with Star Wars fans by aligning its latest Star Wars collection, with international Star Wars Day – the infamous #MayThe4th. @LEGO_Group launched the campaign with the Promoted Spotlight Trend on May 4th, inspiring fans to share their love for both Star Wars and @LEGO_Group. Fans were so inspired, the exclusive Star Wars collection sold out in less than 2 days,” said Angus Keene, head of client partnerships at Twitter Australia.
Reimagining a live event
“While most physical events were put on hold this year, it did not stop @MicrosoftAU from bringing its CEO, Satya Nadella down under. @MicrosoftAU invited Nadella to virtually visit Australia to share learnings on how it’s reimagining business, work and what’s possible in this new world, and livestreamed it all on Twitter. It was the most viewed branded live event in Australia to date and resulted in the highest engagement of the @MicrosoftAU account across 2020, with two times more profile visits and four times new followers than the average month.”
“@MiloANZ sparked a real-time virtual debate that asked Aussies to pick a side on how they like their favourite chocolate drink served – hot and creamy, or cold and crunchy. On Twitter the campaign tapped into Promoted Trend Spotlight and First View takeover so the debate appeared at the top of Aussies’ Twitter feed, and it encouraged engagement with the use of media polls and conversation cards, which challenged people to pick a side. And it continued the debate well after the launch by tapping into cultural events people were already talking about like the return of Friday Night Footy to our screens, to the re-opening of gyms and snow slopes. By tapping into an age-old debate, it was able to generate buzz and conversations about @MILOANZ in households across the nation.”
Inclusive for all
“To celebrate the launch of its new Series X gaming console, @XboxANZ created a global moment to celebrate the launch, with all eyes on New Zealand to unveil the future of gaming. @XboxANZ transformed New Zealand’s infamous Queenstown to Greenstown to host the event and livestream it around the world on Twitter. It did a great job being inclusive and putting people first, with interpreters, closed captions and a diverse range of people included to ensure it reflected the community it serves and everyone could get involved.”
Tapping into what’s happening
“This year @Telstra consistently harnessed the power of Twitter to share its latest updates and deals, and tap into the conversations dominating social discourse. Early this year as the nation went into lockdown, @Telstra launched a video series with comedian Jim Eoin parodying life in isolation, to make us laugh. To celebrate the return of AFL, @Telstra created a video series with AFL legends giving audiences a look into the stars’ personal life. It also enlisted the help of ‘5G Chief Investigator’ Mark Humphries to debunk the myths surrounding 5G in a light-hearted content series. And when @Apple released its highly-anticipated iPhone 12, @Telstra used the moment to reveal its latest offer. @Telstra is a great example of tapping into the cultural moments that resonate with Aussies.”
“@SpotifyAU inspired music and podcast fandom with its annual #2020Wrapped campaign –– sharing data and content from local artists that fueled conversation and participation. Along with a variety of promoted videos, @SpotifyAU used polls inviting fans to vote on their favourite podcast or artist. And post launch, it continued the conversation by asking fans “What did your 2020 sound like?”, to sustain the conversation and achieve 5k mentions. It’s a great example of how brands can tap into interest areas to spark conversations.”
Launching of a new series
“@Foxtel successfully launched its popular original series #Wentworth to fans via the Promoted Spotlight Trend on the day of premiere. @Foxtel creatively featured a mix of short video reels highlighting characters, along with the series trailer, to drive tune-in and conversation for the new season. In addition to launch day, @Foxtel promoted Tweets in the lead up, and post premiere to build hype and sustain tune-in across the season.”
“With over 900k Tweets relating to @masterchefau in 2019, @Coles connected with the MasterChef foodie fanbase to launch its MasterChef 2020 sponsorship via a co-branded #MasterChefAU Promoted Spotlight so it was at the top of everyone’s feed (and mind) on launch day. Throughout the series, @Coles kept the conversation going on Twitter by showcasing fresh @Coles produce featured within the show with co-branded Tweets from @masterchefau.”
By James Manning
• Australia v India Test Cricket biggest audience attraction
• 1m watching night session on Seven and Fox Cricket
Seven finally good a big reward for its cricket investment last night. It wasn’t the biggest Test cricket audience ever to be sure, but it was by far the major attraction for viewers just one week before Christmas.
The first day of the First Test between Australia and India started the day with 420,000 watching the first session on Seven at 3pm. The numbers for the second session of play in the early evening were 536,000.
Test cricket in primetime than saw 1m viewers watching India bat in the third session. Seven had 673,000 of them with Fox Cricket attracting 333,000. The Kayo and Foxtel Go numbers should push the combined Foxtel audience to over 450,000. The Seven number was up on 588,000 watching Australia v Pakistan on day one in a day/night test in Adelaide 12 months ago.
The next best non-news audience last night was 267,000 watching Great Getaways on Nine.
The Beatles proved to be a viewing magnet with The Beatles: Eight Days a Week on SBS cracking into the top 20 with 262,000.
Check TV ratings every day over the summer on Twitter by following @mediaweekaus.
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.7%||7TWO||3.3%||GO!||3.3%||10 Bold||4.2%||VICELAND||1.8%|
|ABC ME||0.6%||7mate||3.9%||GEM||2.4%||10 Peach||3.1%||Food Net||1.1%|
|ABC NEWS||2.3%||7flix||1.9%||9Life||2.8%||10 Shake||0.4%||NITV||0.3%|
|9Rush||1.1%||SBS World Movies||0.9%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||10 Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||3.2%||7TWO||5.2%||GO!||3.7%||WIN Bold||4.7%||VICELAND||1.9%|
|ABC ME||1.4%||7mate||4.1%||GEM||2.7%||WIN Peach||3.3%||Food Net||0.7%|
|ABC NEWS||1.7%||7flix (Excl. Tas/WA)||2.4%||9Life||2.4%||Sky News on WIN||1.7%||NITV||0.3%|
|THURSDAY METRO ALL TV|
16-39 Top Five
18-49 Top Five
25-54 Top Five
Shares all people, 6pm-midnight, Overnight (Live and AsLive), Audience numbers FTA metro, Sub TV national
Source: OzTAM and Regional TAM 2018. The Data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) without the prior written consent of OzTAM
Six Nine Entertainment executives are jockeying to replace outgoing chief executive Hugh Marks amid rumblings that only one woman is in contention, reinforcing growing concern about the company’s “blokey” culture, reports The Australian’s James Madden.
A number of external media figures are also vying to replace Marks, who quit in November after board discomfort when he revealed his relationship with a subordinate.
Sources who agreed to speak on condition of anonymity said the company’s highly regarded marketing boss, Lizzie Young, was the only woman asked to present to the Nine board.
Other internal contenders include chief digital and publishing officer Chris Janz, Stan chief executive Mike Sneesby – both touted as frontrunners for the position – along with Nine radio managing director Tom Malone.
Nine’s director of television Michael Healy and the company’s chief sales officer, Michael Stephenson, are also understood to be under consideration.
Australian media conglomerate Nine has upgraded its earnings expectations as the advertising market extends its strong rebound, reports The AFR’s Max Mason.
Nine said on Thursday that it expects earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation before specific items in the six months ending December 31 to climb 40 per cent from the $251 million it made in the year-earlier period.
That is an improvement on the 30 per cent increase that Nine forecast at its November annual general meeting.
“Of particular note, Nine’s December quarter is now expected to show growth in metro [free-to-air] advertising revenue of almost 20 per cent (previously [about] 15 per cent), meaning that the group’s metro TV ad revenues in the December half are now expected to be up by around 1 per cent on the prior corresponding period,” Nine said in a statement to the Australian stock exchange.
Created by Melbourne outfit Mushroom Vision and licensed to the ABC, The Sound has quickly become the premiere platform for Australia’s best musicians to perform for a television audience, as well as online viewers once each performance is later uploaded to the artists’ YouTube channels, reports The Australian’s Andrew McMillen.
Hosted by journalist and broadcaster Jane Gazzo, The Sound is aimed at general interest viewers seeking to learn about the latest and greatest sounds in Australian music, both established and emerging.
TV Tonight was pretty excited when SBS previewed The Beach:
“Stop what you’re doing and watch The Beach,’ wrote David Knox. “Warwick Thornton’s solo series is an exquisite and mesmerising television experience. And you won’t see anything else like it this year.”
The TV series is the only Australian representative in the TV Tonight list of the best shows of 2020.
Six other Australian productions managed to make the runners-up list.
The Crown ascended to the throne in Nielsen’s streaming rankings for the week of November 16, setting a record in the process, reports The Hollywood Reporter.
The Netflix series had the highest single-week total to date in the streaming rankings, with viewers watching 3.36 billion minutes of the show from November 16-22. The previous high was 3.01 billion minutes for The Umbrella Academy from August 3-9.
About two thirds of the total viewing time for The Crown was for season four, per Nielsen. The second highest share of minutes went to season one, suggesting that some viewers used the new season as a catalyst to rewatch or start watching. The ratings service also says that about two thirds of The Crown‘s viewers were over age 55.
After three straight weeks at No. 1, The Queen’s Gambit dropped one spot to second, though it still racked up more than a billion minutes of viewing. The Mandalorian spent its fourth consecutive week on the charts, and the Disney+ series accrued more viewing time than the prior week, rising to 939 million minutes from 873 million.
Brendan Fevola has reflected with pride on his achievements in work and life since landing “the best job in the world”, reports News Corp’s Jackie Epstein.
Former AFL star Fevola says he used to get home at 3am but has loved waking up at that time each morning for breakfast radio for the past six years.
“The thing is you wake up at 3-3.30 every morning and I used to get home then but it’s a great job, great people, best job in the world,’’ Fevola said.
“The last ratings we had the most listeners out of any FM station in Melbourne.
Fevola said he’s looking forward to working again with Fifi Box, and new recruit Nick Cody, who is replacing Byron Cooke on FOX FM next year.