By James Manning
• ‘I’m all in with on demand’ – live radio hallmarks present in new shows
All podcast platforms have been experiencing strong growth this year. Mediaweek reported PodcastOne data a week ago that noted the SCA platform had posted significant growth across 2020.
Tomorrow in Podcast Week we will report on ARN’s iHeartPodcast Network and its impressive growth figures.
As audiences gain momentum and revenue starts to build, getting the right skills to run the divisions is key.
Three key executives making a difference in the sector have all been featured in Mediaweek recently. Nova Entertainment recently secured Rachel Corbett to run its podcast platform and we talked recently to PodcastOne and SCA’s Sam Cavanagh about the new Remembering Project from Hamish and Andy.
Working alongside Cavanagh at PodcastOne is Nic McClure who we also profiled recently in Mediaweek.
See also: Podcast Week: The Briefing’s Nic McClure
Mediaweek spoke with Cavanagh recently also about the lure of audio after the long-time Hamish and Andy executive producer and SCA trouble-shooter returned to the sector.
During his brief time out of radio Cavanagh moved with the family to Byron Bay for a bit of a change.
“I’d had a great time launching the Kennedy Molloy drive show after Hamish & Andy finished,” Cavanagh told Mediaweek. “Having a bit of a break gave me a chance to think about what else I wanted to try.
“I did a year in advertising which was an incredible education in a different sort of creativity. It was a year where I learnt a lot, but I did really miss audio and making shows.
“When the opportunity to head back to SCA and work on the audio on demand business came up I jumped at it.”
After a recent promotion within SCA, Cavanagh is now head of entertainment and news content – digital audio. “SCA has a huge and thriving broadcast side of their business and a growing audio on demand business that includes PodcastOne, all of the catch-up podcasts and some other exciting stuff we will be announcing soon.”
With PodcastOne, Cavanagh has launched The Briefing and Matt & Alex: All Day Breakfast, Em Rusciano’s Emsolation and Remembering Project with more to follow. “There is a whole heap of stuff in development which we can’t talk about yet.”
Cavanagh said he enjoys both developing new projects and getting his hands dirty when opportunities arise.
“When the pandemic first hit I was able to jump in and EP Matt & Alex. I was panelling and producing and I just loved it. The thrill of being in a studio is the reason we all get into this, but I knew I couldn’t do that forever.”
Regarding Hamish and Andy, Cavanagh noted how important on demand audio always was to them. “From day one, before podcasting was even a thing, we had a podcast available for listeners. It was before even content directors had a handle on giving the audience an on-demand option. We did it with Hamish and Andy because podcasts were what we were listening to back then.
“Even then when we knew the podcast audience was small compared to the broadcast audience, the feedback we got was always disproportionally from the podcast audience. We knew it was a really engaged audience and Hamish and Andy have always really respected it and invested in it and nurtured it.”
Cavanagh is not working on any of the “live radio” projects for SCA. “I’m all in with on demand,” he said.
“A lot of the shows we are making – particularly The Briefing and Matt & Alex – are really designed and produced like live radio. The way we put them together and the way we produce them is very similar. We are in a studio with premium talent producing timely content daily, just as we would do with a radio show. I am still very much able to scratch that itch of publishing each day.”
As to whether a podcast could develop into a live radio sow, Cavanagh told us: “All of our radio shows also exist as podcasts and you could go the other way.” He added: “The Rush Hour on Triple M Melbourne is actually published as a podcast first and then broadcast as a radio show. It’s all content and the audience will chose to consume it when it suits them best.”
Tomorrow in Mediaweek Morning Report: Podcast Week
Top Photo: Sam Cavanagh
Publicis’ Jodi Fraser this week told Mediaweek one of the key messages Nine, 10 and Seven had for advertisers was how they had improved their data offerings.
“There was a lot of focus on data from the networks, and for Publicis and the direction our clients are going in terms of data strategy, we will be able to tap into each network’s offering to drive solutions for our clients,” said Fraser.
Here is a reminder about the key points the networks had about data at the respective 2021 Upfront events.
SWM enhances first-party data strengthening people-based marketing
Seven West Media last week detailed its data-driven solution for brands to reach their target audiences.
Comprised of millions of SWMIDs, Seven’s first-party audience identifier, enhanced with extensive second-party data partnerships, will power a new audience insights, activation and measurement solution within 7REDiQ, SWM’s new audience intelligence platform. 7REDiQ is promising to bring brands closer to their desired audiences than ever before.
Charlotte Valente, SWM Chief Marketing Officer, said: “Being an audience-centric business means that knowing and understanding our audience is key to our success. It’s already driven big decisions, like acquiring The Voice which builds on Australians’ affinity with live music and entertainment. The fused data inside 7REDiQ was key to establishing that audience understanding.
“Leveraging our first-party data around each consumer, a unique SWMID, combined with what our data partners add, offers an unbeatable starting point for your people-based marketing strategies.
“7REDiQ takes that data and offers brands the ability to target exactly the people they want to reach, along with comprehensive audience forecasts and measurements. Best of all, it’s straightforward for brands to take the insights and knowledge 7REDiQ provides and turn that into an actionable campaign with 7RED.”
Kurt Burnette, SWM Chief Revenue Officer, said: “Data and insights that can be actioned are more important than ever before. For brands to reach their target audiences, it’s crucial that they understand where those audiences are and what drives them.”
Nine launches Audience Match to search 13m registered users
Way back in September at the first Upfront event, Nine announced Audience Match in partnership with Adobe, a custom destination designed to give marketers the ability to activate people-based audiences across all of Nine’s properties.
Audience Match will allow Nine to assist brands in matching their customer data to Nine’s 13m registered users through one streamlined integration.
Brands will be able to better connect with Nine’s audiences by enabling people-based activation of first- party data that customers have agreed to share across Nine’s premium content. Coles will sign on as the launch partner.
“Audience Match will help facilitate people-based marketing across Nine, leveraging our signed-in audience of 13m Australians and seamlessly bring together the power of premium content and people- based data to create personalised customer experiences,” said Michael Stephenson, Nine’s Chief Sales Officer. “This partnership gives Australian marketers a unique alternative to both traditional media players and new digital platforms in terms of bringing a quality content environment together with data at scale.”
Audience Match offers marketers the ability to use rich customer data from online and offline sources to segment and more effectively reach their known customers. Marketers can also build look-a-likes of their customers to provide personalised experiences or suppress their audiences to improve media efficiency.
Audience Match will be immediately made available across 9Now including the ability for advertisers to target their own audiences in the living room on a connected TV. In the first half of next year, Nine will roll out Audience Match across its other digital properties.
ViacomCBS continues to deepen its data stack
ViacomCBS Australia and New Zealand announced the addition of Flybuys to its data offering.
Its combination with RedPlanet, Quantium and Smrtr (formerly Greater Data) promises brands even sharper targeting and measurement capabilities across its broadcast video on-demand platform, 10 Play, and across more industries, interests and behaviours.
10 ViacomCBS, Head of Data and Digital Audience, Josh Slighting, said: “In just 18 months, we have built best-in-class addressable advertising and analytics capabilities across 85% of our platforms.
“We have the capability and acumen not just to compete effectively, but to win, with 75 per cent of total digital sales now powered by data. Backed by ViacomCBS, we are able to push the boundaries of innovation when it comes to targeting.”
10 has accelerated its data capabilities in 2020 alongside the transformation of 10 Play which has recently launched a number of exclusive premium ad formats.
Slighting said: “In 2021, we will move into more cutting-edge data-driven strategies, with confidence in the foundation we have established for ourselves. We have a durable data and technology setup, with some of the brightest and most talented people in the industry at the helm. We will be advancing insights about our audience and will continue to the pursuit of being the easiest, most accessible and transparent television network to work with.”
With respect to the partnership with Flybuys, Slighting said: “The partnership with FlyBuys makes accessible to our clients premium targeting from one of Australia’s leading loyalty providers.”
Screen Australia has announced $1 million of development funding for seven features, 16 television dramas and five online projects.
The projects include Drum Wave, a new thriller from the team behind Relic; Mid Life, a follow up to Luke Eve’s drama High Life; and an online comedy about Dungeons and Dragons called Dragon Friends: Dream Killers.
Screen Australia’s Head of Development Nerida Moore said, “It’s great to see producers thinking globally and developing unique stories for Australian audiences and the world. We’re excited to support these original story ideas, many with distinct storyworlds and fantastic comedic imaginations that I’m confident will resonate. We’re also proud to fund children’s programs that will entertain and help navigate life’s big lessons with the likes of Andrew the Big BIG Unicorn.”
THE LATEST PROJECTS FUNDED FOR DEVELOPMENT INCLUDE:
Dragon Friends: Dream Killers: A six-part online animation/live action hybrid which follows friends Gabe, Ally, Mike and Eddie who get banned from their local trivia night. In need of a new activity to keep the splintering friendship group together, they leave their real life behind and enter the world of Dungeons and Dragons. This adventure comedy is created by the team behind The Dragon Friends podcast, with writer/director David Harmon and writers Edan Lacey, Alexandra Lee, Michael Hing, Ben Jenkins and Simon Greiner. It will be produced by Lacey, Jenkins, Shakeera Khan and Grace Rein.
Andrew the Big BIG Unicorn: A children’s television series about a sweet-hearted purple rhino called Andrew. Living with his adoptive parents in a world full of unicorns, Andrew grapples with growing up a bit different to his peers. This animated series from Pirate Size productions sees writer Dan Nixon team up with storyboard artist Alyssa Smedley. It will be produced by Bryony McLachlan and executive produced by Avrill Stark (The Deep).
Over My Dead Body: A six-part television series about a Muslim woman named Rana who is haunted by her recently deceased, conservative mother Hayat. With Hayat’s spirit mysteriously earthbound, Rana’s freshly-independent lifestyle is exposed, forcing mother and daughter to connect in unexpected ways – but thank goodness Hayat is already dead, otherwise they’d kill each other. This comedy drama will be written by Amal Awad, who is joined in the writers room by Jane Allen (Janet King), Kacie Anning (The Other Guy) and Adele Vuko (Over and Out).
We Ate Jeff: A dark television comedy about a group of four strangers who survive a plane crash in the desert and reluctantly eat the dead pilot on day one. To their surprise they are rescued later that afternoon and they resolve to cover up their terrible secret. Developing the series will be writers Nick Musgrove (How to Stay Married), Nicolette Minster (The Legend of Burnout Barry) and Anna Barnes (Retrograde), creative producer Nick Russell (Let’s Break ‘Em Up!) and executive producer Damian Davis (Mr Black). The set-up director is Catriona McKenzie (Tidelands).
Top Photo: Dragon Friends (L to R): Edan Lacey, Michael Hing, Dave Harmon, Ben Jenkins, Simon Greiner, Alex Lee
By Trent Thomas
The Mandalorian is #1 again in Australia and New Zealand which has continued a trend that dates back to November last year when the show was launched as a flagship piece of content for the new Disney+ platform.
The show is now preparing to launch its second season on October 30 which should see the show continue to dominate the charts for some time.
The new season picks up from the end of the first with The Mandalorian (Din Djarin) departing to find a home for The Child (Baby Yoda). Din is searching for the Jedi, hoping The Child can find a home with them, despite the Jedis and Mandalorians history as ancient enemies. It has also been reported that Rosario Dawson will play a live-action Ahsoka Tano, and see the return of Boba Fett played by Temuera Morrison.
The show’s first season was nominated for Outstanding Drama Series at the 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards and won seven Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards. Work has already begun on The Mandalorian‘s third season.
While The Mandalorian has regained top spot in Australia, The Boys has stayed #1 on the Digital Original and Overall TV charts in NZ.
Netflix continues to dominate the Digital Original charts, especially in Australia with seven top 10 shows, while in New Zealand the digital platform has four shows on the chart.
By James Manning
• Seven ranks #1 network, Nine #1 primary, 10 Bold #1 multi
• Hell week was tough, so is restoring The Block’s facades
• Reality surprise: Cricketer retires hurt from SAS Australia
• Big Audiences correct forecast for Big Weather & Trump Show
Seven News 973,000/950,000
Nine News 945,000,945,000
ABC News 718,000
10 News First 327,000/208,000
SBS World News 172,000
Daily current affairs
A Current Affair 762,000
The Project 304,000/496,000
The Drum 192,000
News Breakfast 209,000
Late night news
The Latest 120,000
Nine News Late 105,000
ABC News Late 61,000
SBS World News Late 31,000
Seven: Home and Away started on 582,000 Monday and was close again on 570,000.
Episode four of SAS Australia and the third withdrawal from the series. It looked like Firass or Jackson would be going home, but it turned out to be former fast bowler Mitchell Johnson. The series ended its second week on 676,000, its first time under 700,000.
The Tuesday movie was 2018’s The Meg, an encounter with the largest marine predator ever, a giant shark, with 287,000 watching.
Nine: A Current Affair went from 816,000 on Monday to 762,000 on Tuesday.
The Block chronicled the challenges of installing gardens and facades on the Brighton houses. Everybody had their challenges, particularly Harry and Tash plus Sarah and George. The Tuesday episode was on 819,000 after 793,000 a week ago.
Episode two of The Trump Show was on 417,000 after launching with 486,000.
10: An audience of 496,000 watched Waleed Aly questioning Fiona O’Loughlin about her autobiography. She didn’t seem to fully grasp his question about whether we should be believing her this time about her sobriety. “I don’t really care,” she replied. A strange response on a publicity tour to get people to invest in her story.
Noodles were on the menu in the Junior MasterChef kitchen with 474,000 watching after 470,000 on Tuesday last week.
A repeat episode of Ambulance Australia was then on 317,000.
ABC: The second episode of Outback Ringer was on 423,000 at 8pm after launching to 392,000.
The final episode of Big Weather (And how to survive it) saw host Craig Reucassel learning about surviving raging floodwaters. The episode ended with Reucassel recapping some of the learnings from the three episodes and then sausages on the grill at a community BBQ. The series ended on 411,000 after 369,000 and 468,000 for the first two episodes.
SBS: The repeat episode of Every Family Has a Secret was on 188,000.
Then followed an episode of Insight about Family Estrangement which was on 193,000.
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.8%||7TWO||4.1%||GO!||1.7%||10 Bold||3.4%||VICELAND||1.3%|
|ABC ME||0.5%||7mate||3.4%||GEM||2.1%||10 Peach||2.1%||Food Net||1.0%|
|ABC NEWS||1.5%||7flix||1.9%||9Life||2.3%||10 Shake||0.3%||NITV||0.1%|
|9Rush||1.2%||SBS World Movies||1.2%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||10 Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.3%||7TWO||5.0%||GO!||1.6%||WIN Bold||4.3%||VICELAND||1.6%|
|ABC ME||0.7%||7mate||5.6%||GEM||4.3%||WIN Peach||3.1%||Food Net||0.7%|
|ABC NEWS||1.1%||7flix (Excl. Tas/WA)||1.9%||9Life||2.0%||Sky News on WIN||2.5%||NITV||0.1%|
|TUESDAY 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
Channel 7 wants axed Weekend Sunrise presenter Simon Reeve to pay back six years of company wages if he proves in court he was an employee and not an independent contractor, reports news.com.au’s Sarah McPhee.
The TV star is suing the Seven Network and seeking up to $1 million, alleging a breach of contract and misrepresentation to his employment after being unceremoniously dumped from the spotlight earlier this year.
Reeve is claiming 12 months’ salary in lieu of termination notice provided by the network, compensation for the failure to pay him annual leave and redundancy, interest and costs.
But in a cross-claim filed in the NSW registry of the Federal Court of Australia on Friday and obtained by news.com.au, the Seven Network states it entered into agreements with the 59-year-old’s company Simon Reeve Productions Pty Ltd (SRP) “for the provision of services”.
In Kevin Rudd‘s long and storied history of enemy making, he has never made a direct assault quite like this, reports The AFR’s Aaron Patrick.
The former prime minister is petitioning federal Parliament for a royal commission into the political influence of the Murdoch media empire, an organisation without a reputation for treating opponents gently.
Kevin07 has clearly hit a nerve. With a little bit of publicity from The Sydney Morning Herald and the ABC, the petition is closing in on 400,000 digital signatures, which dwarfs most of the hundreds of other random and self-interested pleas seeking parliamentary intervention.
Malcolm Turnbull, who encouraged the left-wing Guardian to open in Australia, has crossed the partisan aisle to sign. Turnbull said Murdoch had operated a monopoly in print since 1987, and praised Rudd for the idea.
In a country where about half the votes cast in the last federal election ended up with the Liberal-National coalition, News Corp’s 47 per cent audience share isn’t surprising, or necessarily dangerous.
As many Australians get more of their news from Facebook, Twitter and other social media, print influence is declining. In Queensland, the Labor government appears to be in front despite a campaign against it by News Corp’s Courier–Mail. Labor easily won the last Victorian election despite the opposition of the Herald Sun, the biggest-selling daily paper.
The ABC’s 7.30 and AM programs did not cover climate change adequately and related reports on drought, bushfire, fossil fuel extraction, and energy policy ignored climate change as a causative factor, a confidential report for the Australian Conservation Foundation has found, reports Guardian Australia’s Amanda Meade.
The ACF commissioned the former Media Watch host Jonathan Holmes to study the programs’ output for 15 months, between 1 October 2017 and 31 December 2018, to find out if criticism of the ABC’s coverage was valid and if he could detect a deliberate avoidance of the issues due to political pressure.
Holmes found the coverage lacking but said there was no evidence reporters were under political pressure from management. The report did not assess climate coverage across all the ABC’s radio, TV and digital output but did single out ABC online for its excellent, detailed climate change coverage from a number of specialist science, weather and business reporters.
If there’s one phrase likely to raise the hackles of ABC journalists, it is “inner-city left-wing elites”, writes former Media Watch host Jonathan Holmes in Guardian Australia.
They hear it all the time from their most dogged denigrators. According to the Chris Kennys and Andrew Bolts in the Murdoch press, to the Eric Abetzes and Barnaby Joyces in the coalition ranks, ABC journos are themselves members of the inner-city elite, and share its pre-occupations and biases on a host of topics – in favour of action on climate change, in favour of gay marriage, against tough policies to deter boat people, and so on.
The very word “elite”, used as a pejorative, has become a cliché of the culture wars, in Australia, as in the US.
So to be told by their own boss, the ABC’s director of news, Gaven Morris, that they pay too much attention to the concerns of the inner-city left-wing elites was bound to shock.
Meanwhile, for what it’s worth, here’s a tip for Gaven Morris: if you’re going to use the enemy’s war cry in a pep-talk to your troops, make really sure they understand you are doing so deliberately. Otherwise they might think you’ve turned enemy yourself.
Love Island Australia alum Eden Dally is one of the 17 celebrity recruits who signed up for Channel Seven’s SAS Australia, reports Daily Mail Australia’s Candice Jackson.
And he says the military-style show couldn’t be further from his past experiences with reality television.
Speaking to Daily Mail Australia on Tuesday, the 28-year-old confirmed there were no producers guiding the cast, no retakes, and that ‘everything is as crazy as seen on TV’.
Eden appeared on dating series Love Island in 2018 and, like some of his SAS co-stars, had a presumption of what would happen behind the scenes.
‘This show has no producers coming over and telling you anything. It’s basically the DS [directing staff] that are running the course. There are no retakes and basically everything that you’re seeing happening is what’s happened,’ Eden said.
While Love Island was a social show in balmy Majorca, Eden said the SAS cast were not always allowed to speak to one another and were often left freezing while filming in the NSW Snowy Mountains.
‘Once the fire goes out in the middle of the night, you are shivering on ice. It’s physically and mentally draining. We all knew what we were signing up for – including becoming injured or getting hypothermia – but when you get there it really does hit you as a big shock,’ he said.
All 41 countries which were due to appear at Eurovision in 2020 are confirmed for 2021, reports TV Tonight.
Martin Österdahl, Executive Supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest, said: “We are grateful for the commitment of the 41 participating broadcasters in helping us bring the Eurovision Song Contest back in 2021.”
“We have the exact same line up of countries that would have competed in 2020 and we are thrilled that they will all return next year. Together with our host broadcasters we are continuing to develop the 4 different scenarios and maintaining a dialogue with all participants. The team from NPO, NOS and AVROTROS are working hard on ensuring the Eurovision Song Contest will provide the excitement and innovation expected by over 180 million viewers, despite the challenging circumstances.”
Sietse Bakker, Executive Producer of the Eurovision Song Contest 2021, said: “It is fantastic that the same 41 countries that would have taken part this year still want to come to the Netherlands in May 2021. This demonstrates their confidence in our country still being able to organize a successful Eurovision Song Contest in Rotterdam next year, after the cancellation of the 2020 edition.”