Bad Hair Day on Radio National

The ABC has always been Amateur Hour on grooming. Its station promotions are the other weakness; sickly imitations of the commercial networks’ urgent demands for attention. I’m not suggesting they get better at copying commercial style promotions. Quite the reverse. The problem is an unwillingness to experiment with alternative advertising formats – testimonials, mash-ups, pointers, cross-promotion and snatches. Spare us the insult of needless repetition.

Although their programs treat the audience with great respect, (it’s so nice not to be talked down to) the advertisements they use to promote those programs remain formulaic in scheduling and format. Perhaps there remains some distaste for the notion of advertising, even if it is advertising one’s own excellent content.

ABC Radio National has had tremendous success with Podcasting. But they continue to promote only the forthcoming week’s programs. They could now promote all the content that exists on their web site as well (usually four weeks’ worth of history). Some more creativity in promotion would be welcome. The bad hair we can live with.

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6 Comments

  1. How about their stupid radio blog page. I Thought it might be great to have a bit of a chat with the presenters, and get some blogging going which would build up a loyal following AND help promote the programs. Here’s the announcement page, which is yes, blank. Sigh.
    http://blogs.abc.net.au/wa/wa_announcements/index.html

    You can’t search by presenter or show, and as I look at it now, the feed link just churns away doing nothing.

    The latest post, on a station with numerous daily shows was 5 days ago.

    The posts seem to totally misunderstand the concept. They do nothing to promote upcoming shows or even get discussion going on those just past. They don’t really try and promote any discussion.

    The feed they give doesn’t update the blog topics, it just sits there with welcome to drive, welcome to mornings etc. You actually have to fight your way through to where you can find the comments on the show you are interested. There’s no way of knowing that there is a new post.

    It loads slower than a nun’s nightie. Minutes go by.

    An absolute piece of crap.

    The Worst of Perth

  2. Yes, lots of Sorry, Page Not Found, though that is the Local Radio blog site, not RN. Radio National’s site is relatively easy to navigate. They are slowly putting together some blogs. All in the Mind comes to Mind. http://blogs.abc.net.au/allinthemind/ Interestingly, although they promote it on air there is little commentary on the blog. The broadcast/blog interface needs further thinking. It’s all in the mind.

  3. I frequently look at the all in the mind one, but one RN that is screaming for a blog but just has a really dum comment box thingy is by design. Would really suit a blog comment format.

  4. Yes I suggested to RN once that they needed someone who knew something about marketing to improve their web presence, however what do you expect from people with haircuts like that.

  5. I suspect their audience is so engaged with the content, they overpower the organisation with suggestions. I think broadcasters continue to see the web as a way of distributing content.

    The untapped potential of the medium is to expand the ABC’s engagement with the audience and start using them as a resource. Partly as lobbyists and advocates but also perhaps creating a better ability to capture and filter suggestions made by the general public. That hasn’t happened yet.

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