Mother's Day digital radio promotion           Finalists announced for best radio ad of the year           Entries open for Radio Awards to be held in Melbourne           M&Ms Xmas campaign wins Sirens round 5           First radio ratings survey results for 2014 released today           Gold Standard software providers fully accredited           Final chance to enter best radio ad of the year in Siren Awards           $2 million of commercial radio support begins for First Break winner ILUKA           Interim fee not enough - record companies take radio back to Tribunal           Regional commercial radio stations put listeners first           Local regional radio stations switch off simulcasts and metros on notice           Australians continue love affair with radio in the car           Regional radio survey provider panel announced           Sydney indie band Castlecomer wins "First Break"           2014 Survey Dates           Marketforce and Internode team up again to win fourth round of 2014 Sirens           Radio industry looks to a smooth transition in 2014           Digital radio reception to improve in major cities           Radio industry announces Stage 1 Gold Standard software providers           Digital radio listening at an all time high           Re-elected CRA Board calls for less regulation           Ground-breaking new research demonstrates radio effectiveness          




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Media Releases

 
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22-Dec-05  Cannes winner takes out Round 3 of the Siren Awards
13-Dec-05  More Australians tune in to commercial radio at breakfast
17-Oct-05  Hiphop artist Figgkidd wins New Artist to Radio
15-Oct-05  Rod Muir and Bob Francis inducted to Hall of Fame
    Winners announced for 2005 Commercial Radio Awards
14-Oct-05  Australia unveils world’s first picture digital radio
    Industry welcomes digital announcement
11-Oct-05  Radio delivers good first quarter - ad revenue
05-Oct-05  Round two 2006 Siren winners includes new craft category
04-Oct-05  Radio conference and Awards next week
29-Sep-05  Aussie music stars headline Radio Awards
27-Sep-05  Radio industry identifies chart-toppers of tomorrow
22-Sep-05  Vega 95.3fm now broadcasting in digital
15-Sep-05  Radio continues growth in first half of 05 - CEASA Reports
13-Sep-05  Four acts vie for Best New Artist Award
31-Aug-05  Retail remains number one with radio
15-Aug-05  Radio ad revenue - latest figures
26-Jul-05  Finalists announced for 2005 Radio Awards
19-Jul-05  Radio ads continue to perform and win international recognition
13-Jul-05  Strong growth for radio ad revenue – new figures for financial year
    Radio industry seeks stars of tomorrow
15-Jun-05  Olay ad wins Round One in 2006 Sirens
14-Jun-05  Barry Humphries to speak at radiofest
06-Jun-05  Las Vegas prize for engineering award
    Leading Aussie execs promote radio in new ad campaign
23-May-05  Radio creative workshops for Queensland
20-May-05  VB campaign wins 2005 Gold Siren Award
16-May-05  John Safran to speak at Radio Master class
09-May-05  Digital radio vital to industry's future
    Digital Radio Government Submission
04-May-05  Controversial Lamb Campaign in the Running for Cannes
18-Apr-05  Siren Awards Breakfast and Master class
14-Apr-05  Radio ad campaign to be extended
23-Mar-05  Entries Open for the 2005 Radio Awards
21-Mar-05  Radio argues against lifting cap on licence fees for music copyright
15-Mar-05  Commercial radio leaders in Canberra for digital talks
14-Mar-05  Radio targets finance sector to increase ad spend in 2005
28-Feb-05  2GB announces digital radio first
17-Feb-05  Winners announced for Round 2 of the Siren Awards
14-Feb-05  Digital radio test transmissions power upgrade
01-Feb-05  Radio kicks off campaign for 2005
17-Jan-05  Radio ad revenue up 15% in 2004
11-Jan-05  Australia to send 50,000 radios to tsunami hit areas




22-Dec-05  CANNES WINNER TAKES OUT ROUND 3 OF THE SIREN AWARDS

 

The first Australian radio advertisement to win a Lion at the Cannes Advertising Festival this year has been announced today as the overall and single category winner of round three of the 2006 Siren Awards for creative excellence in radio advertising.

Killed by a Car, written for the United Nation’s World Environment Day, by Luke Chess and Vince Lagana from Saatchi & Saatchi Sydney, is the winner of Sirens round three and also won a Bronze Lion at the recent Cannes Advertising Festival.

Judge of round three of the Siren Awards and previous winner, Brendon Guthrie from Grey Worldwide, said the writers of the winning advertisement resisted the temptation to say too much and played to the medium’s greatest strength - the ability of radio to involve and surprise. 

“It’s a simple truth, simply told. A couple of the ads in this round had great ideas at their heart, but were either under or over cooked during the writing and/or production stages. And that’s one of the reasons why, for us, the World Environment Day ad stood out so strongly,” Mr Guthrie said.

Highly commended for the Single Category was the advertisement called Jingle for Sensis created by Doogie Chapman from Young & Rubicam in Melbourne.

Chapman also won the Campaign Category for the Leyland Brothers Campaign, of which Jingle was a part. The campaign involves Mike and Mal Leyland coming out of retirement to “ask Australia to stop asking the Leyland brothers and ask Sensis 1234 instead.”

The winner of the new craft category in Round 3, which recognises the important role of sound engineers in creating good advertisements for radio, was sound engineer, Paul Le Couteur, from Flagstaff Studios for the advertisement Berri Asterisk – Change Room. Creative Directors were Tony Leishman and Christine Isaac from The Campaign Palace in Melbourne.

Judge of the craft category, and previous winner, Sam Hopgood of Gasinc said both the Berri ads did a great job of immersing listeners in the environment of the commercial.

“Paul used excellent mic technique and equalisation to give the girls in the ad perspective and position. I also thought the background sound effects provided a level of realism without overpowering the voice over,” Mr Hopgood said.

Paul Le Couteur also won Highly Commended in the craft category for his work on Berri Asterisk – Girls Night. Creative Directors were again Tony Leishman and Christine Isaac from The Campaign Palace in Melbourne.     

The Siren Awards were established to help promote radio advertising and encourage excellence and creativity within the medium.  Winners are announced every two months and the annual winner, announced in May next year, will be automatically entered into the inaugural Cannes Radio Lions in June 2006 and receive a free trip for two people to the event.

Entries for Round 4 of the Siren Awards are now open and will be received until January 23, 2006.  The next award will be presented for material that has aired between March 1 2005 and January 23, 2006.  Entry is free and judges base their decision on creativity, originality and impact.

Commercials can be entered into three categories - Radio Single, Radio Campaign and Craft. A Radio Campaign consists of no less than three different commercials.

To enter the awards or listen to the winning commercials visit the Siren Awards website @sirenawards.com.au.  A new dedicated Cannes section has also been added to the Siren Awards website, where you can listen to all of the winning advertisements from the 2005 Cannes Radio Lions.

Media contact:  Jenny Stevenson (02) 9281 6577 or (0402) 214 039.   

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13-Dec-05  MORE AUSTRALIANS TUNE IN TO COMMERCIAL RADIO AT BREAKFAST

 

Commercial radio ended 2005 on a high note, attracting its largest breakfast audiences in more than five years, according to an analysis of full year ratings data by Commercial Radio Australia.

On average, about 6.7 million people tuned into metropolitan commercial radio during breakfast in 2005, up from 6.6 million in 2004.  During the most recent survey period, commercial radio attracted 6.8 million listeners - 319,000 more than the same period in 2004.   This was the highest number of breakfast listeners since at least the year 2000 and an eight per cent increase on the final survey of 2000.     

“Waking up to radio is an ingrained part of most people’s breakfast routine and a habit people are sticking with despite increasing demands for their attention,” said Joan Warner, chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia.

The trends data for Surveys 1-8, 2005, conducted by Nielsen Media Research, shows commercial breakfast radio attracted average audiences of 2.07 million people per quarter hour throughout 2005, compared with 2.04 million in 2004, an increase of 1.6 per cent.

“This is a very strong result for radio at a time when many forms of traditional media are seeing their audiences fragmented by the Internet and subscription services.  Radio has been less affected because it allows Generations X and Y to listen while multi-tasking, and it remains the major source of news and new music for people of all ages,” Ms Warner said.  “The increase in listeners has also reflected intense competition in the industry and high quality broadcasters and programming.”

The biggest increase in breakfast listening was among those aged 18-24, with average audience numbers in this group up by 5.3 percent in 2005 compared with 2004.  Listening among people aged 55 and over grew by 2.4 per cent.

Overall throughout all day parts, commercial radio’s metropolitan cumulative audience grew to more than 8.6 million in 2005 from 8.5 million in 2004.

On average, people aged 10 years and over spent 18 hours and 42 minutes each week listening to commercial radio, or two hours and 38 minutes per day.

People in Melbourne spent the most time listening to commercial radio per week (19 hours 6 minutes), followed by Sydney (18 hours 49 minutes), Adelaide (18 hours 47 minutes), Perth (18 hours), and Brisbane (17 hours 44 minutes).

During 2005, commercial radio reached 78 per cent of Australians aged 10 plus in an average week.  Most listening took place at home (47%), followed by in the car (26%), at work (25%) and in other places (2%).

Media contact: Judy Shaw  (0418) 415 965. 

Source: Nielsen Media Research, average of five capital cities, Surveys 1-8, 2005 compared with Surveys 1-8, 2004 unless otherwise stated.


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17-Oct-05  HIPHOP ARTIST FIGGKIDD WINS NEW ARTIST TO RADIO

 

Hip-hop artist, Figgkidd, has won the commercial radio industry’s New Artists to Radio (NA2R) showcase and performed alongside Jimmy Barnes, Paul Mac and Thirsty Merc at the Australian Commercial Radio Awards on the weekend.

Figgkidd is a 21-year old hip-hop artist from the Bankstown area in Sydney. He has been rapping and rhyming since he was 15 and is an avid animator. He cites Bankstown, in Sydney’s multi-cultural southwest, as at the heart of his musical eclecticism.

Figgkidd was chosen from eight Australian finalists by a panel of radio program and music directors who believe he has the potential to be the next big thing on the Australian music scene.

His debut album, This is Figgkidd, available this month, was written and recorded in Sydney by an unknown female hip hop producer, Lui, and features some of the world's best DJ's and rappers from the USA including DJ Babu from Dilated Peoples, Tech N9ne, Red Foo and Proof from D12 (Eminem's main support rapper). It is the biggest hip-hop collaboration in the Australian hip-hop history to date.
His latest track My Oh My, an infectiously up-tempo tune re-produced by J Wells, is accompanied by a hilarious video clip directed by Paul Fenech 'Pauly' of Fat Pizza, which comes complete with 'full on' cameos from all the current cast.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said it was fantastic that the commercial radio industry was recognizing a diverse range of musical styles and artists.

“Hip-hop is one of the biggest selling genres today and Figgkidd embellishes all things good that the style of music offers – a great voice and energetic, entertaining performance,” Ms Warner said.

The New Artists to Radio Showcase (NA2R), organised by Commercial Radio Australia, was first held in 2002 and was known as the New Music to Radio (NM2R) showcase, with the aim of encouraging the development of Australian music. The event has been successful in helping launch the careers of artists like Kid Courageous, Delta Goodrem, Thirsty Merc, Sarah Blasko, Tammin Sursok, Jade MacRae and Eran James.

All the NA2R finalists were chosen based on their commercial radio potential by a panel of radio network program and music directors. To be considered for the event the acts must not have achieved Top 40 status in Music Network’s Australian National Hot 100. They also must have a commercial release scheduled for the period from September 1, 2005 to January 31, 2006.

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson W: 02 9281 6577 Ph: 0402 214 039 or Judy Shaw Ph: 0418 415 965. A photo is available.

Commercial Radio Australia wishes to thank Studio 301 for its generous support of the New Artists to Radio (NA2R) event.


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15-Oct-05  ROD MUIR AND BOB FRANCIS INDUCTED TO HALL OF FAME

 

One of the founders of FM radio in Australia, Rod Muir, and the talkback presenter credited with bringing The Beatles to Adelaide during their 1964 tour were tonight inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame at the 2005 Australian Commercial Radio Awards.

Rod Muir and veteran Adelaide radio host Bob Francis were presented with the accolade, recognising outstanding lifetime achievement and contribution to the radio broadcasting industry, at a gala ceremony at the Sydney Convention Centre.

The recognition of Rod Muir, who founded 2MMM in 1980, coincides with the 25th anniversary of commercial FM radio in Australia.  In the late 1970s, Mr Muir mounted a concerted campaign to have the Federal Government introduce FM broadcasting in Australia. His lobbying led to the introduction of commercial broadcasting licences in the major capital cities in August 1980.  The first seven FM stations were 2MMM and 2Day-FM in Sydney, Melbourne’s Fox-FM and EON-FM, Adelaide’s Double SA-FM, Perth’s 96-FM, and Brisbane’s 4MMM.

Mr Muir spearheaded his own consortium and was granted one of the foundation FM licences in Sydney, for 2MMM.  Within three years, 2MMM had become the second most listened to station in Sydney.  Its promise was to “triple your music”, while the television commercial “Because your ears have brains” made to launch the station won the TV commercial of the year.

In addition to his key role in the birth of Australian FM radio, Rod Muir is credited with introducing tight Top Forty play list programming to Sydney’s 2SM in 1969, and other music formats that dominated AM radio before the introduction of the FM sound.

Bob Francis is an Adelaide radio institution who, after nearly 50 years on air, still dominates night-time radio in Adelaide with his own outspoken style.  His FIVEaa show captures a massive 24.5 percent of the market. During his career, Bob has hosted the city’s top-rating talk show, received numerous awards including a Golden Stylus, and convinced The Beatles to come to Adelaide during their 1964 tour of Australia. In 1998, he received an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) for services to the radio industry.

Joan Warner, chief executive officer of industry body Commercial Radio Australia, paid tribute to the recipients.

“Rod Muir’s contribution helped revolutionise the sound of Australian radio. We take FM for granted now but in 1980 it presented a brand new frontier. It meant better sound quality, allowing listeners to listen to music as it had been recorded, and quickly captured the youth market. Rod was inspired by what he heard on air in the US and came back to create a new era of radio in Australia.

“There are thousands of people from Adelaide who remain grateful to Bob Francis for putting together the 80,000 signature petition which persuaded The Beatles to change their itinerary and visit Adelaide in 1964. On top of that, Bob has been presented with a Golden Microphone from FIVEaa for 20 years of broadcasting with that station - and he’s still going strong.”

Organised by Commercial Radio Australia, on behalf of the radio industry, the Australian Commercial Radio Awards include 29 categories, covering all areas of radio broadcasting including news, talk, sport, music and entertainment.

The Hall of Fame recipients are nominated by industry colleagues and are selected by a high level judging committee.  Previous inductees include radio stalwarts John Laws, Bob Rogers, Gary O’Callaghan and Paul Thompson, CEO of DMG Radio.


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15-Oct-05  WINNERS ANNOUNCED FOR 2005 COMMERCIAL RADIO AWARDS

 

The Australian radio industry tonight celebrated its 17th annual Australian Commercial Radio Awards (ACRAs) in Sydney with many well-known personalities winning statues, as well as a surprise appearance as co-host for the night by Dame Edna Everage.

Highlights of the award winners include:

* 2GB’S Alan Jones became one of the most celebrated radio announcers in the history of the Awards winning both Best Talk Presenter and Best Current Affairs Commentator categories for the third year in a row, taking his total Awards to 15 over the past ten years

* Nova 96.9’s Merrick and Rosso won Best On-Air Team for the third year in a row

* 2UE’s Steve Blanda won the Best AM News Presenter for the second year in a row

* For the second year in a row, a woman won the Best Metropolitan Music Presenter category – Bianca Dye from Nova 96.9 in Sydney

* Melbourne’s Triple M Football won Best Sports Event Coverage for the third year in a row for its coverage of the 2004 AFL Grand Final, in a tie with the 6PR sports department for the Delaware North 20-20 Match

* 2GB’s Ray Hadley won Best Sports Presenter for the second year in a row

* Brisbane’s B105 FM’s Michael “Guitar Boy” O’Brien won Best Newcomer On Air

* Missy Higgins won Best New Australian Artist on Commercial Radio

* Industry stalwarts, Rod Muir, who played a key role in founding FM radio in Australia, and Adelaide radio institution Bob Francis, were inducted into the Commercial Radio Hall of Fame.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner, which organises the awards, said this year’s ACRAs again highlight the enormous wealth of talent working in metropolitan and regional radio stations throughout Australia.

“This year’s Awards are a particularly special event for the industry, given the industry celebrates 25 years of FM, and the industry organisation, known as Commercial Radio Australia, is celebrating 75 years of representing commercial radio.

”It was also a great honor for the industry to have special surprise guest, Dame Edna to co-host with FM talk personality, Paul Murray of Nova 96.9 FM.” 

The presentation evening, held at the Sydney Exhibition and Convention Centre, was attended by more than 800 people with performers for the night, Jimmy Barnes, Paul Mac, Thirsty Merc and Figkidd, the winner of the New Artists to Radio (NA2R) showcase, which supports new Australian artists.

Organised by Commercial Radio Australia, on behalf of the radio industry, the Awards include 29 categories, which cover all areas of radio broadcasting including news, talk, sport, music and entertainment. The Australian Commercial Radio Awards differ from television’s Logie Awards, in that they are peer judged with judging panels comprised of industry members. There was one new category this year – the Innovation and Excellence Award, sponsored by Southern Cross Broadcasting, which recognises excellence in innovation across all facets of radio including on and off air, sales, marketing, programming and management.

A full list of winners is attached in the PDF.

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson 0402 214 039


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14-Oct-05  AUSTRALIA UNVEILS WORLD’S FIRST PICTURE DIGITAL RADIO

 

The Australian commercial radio industry today unveiled the world’s first digital radio capable of displaying pictures.  The groundbreaking prototype, called the DAB Picture Radio, will allow consumers to hear radio programs in CD-quality sound, while seeing images of their favourite artist, news reports or weather maps being broadcast on a colour screen.

The development of the radio is a world first, with the receiver going on display for the first time at the Commercial Radio National Conference in Sydney today.

Peak industry body Commercial Radio Australia developed the prototype in partnership with Inventec Electronics, a subsidiary of global electronics manufacturer Inventec.  The receiver was designed so that it could theoretically retail on the mass market for about $400.

CRA chief executive officer Joan Warner said: “The Australian industry is thrilled to be leading the world in demonstrating the capabilities of advanced Digital Audio Broadcasting (DAB) technology.  But we are only at the tip of the iceberg in terms of what this technology can ultimately deliver to consumers,” she said.

“Our vision for the future of radio is one where listeners will have an enriched, interactive and multimedia experience with more choice in programs and more control over when they listen.  For example, if they are interested in a song, listeners could download more information about the artist, browse a station’s broadcast website or hit rewind and listen to it again,” Ms Warner said. 

Key features of the sleek new radio include:

  • 320 by 240 pixel backlit colour LCD screen to display pictures or text such as album covers, song titles and lyrics, real time news updates, weather and traffic maps, stock reports, competitions and advertising images.
  • The screen can also be used to display a slide show of selected personal photos.
  • Rewind feature so if you miss something, you can rewind and playback the last five minutes of live radio
  • Record a program segment to SD card and playback on mp3
  • Autotune and select stations by name from a menu.
  • 240V to 9V DC external power adapter or C-type alkaline battery.

While there are no immediate plans to put the prototype into production, further development is planned to deliver future functionality such as the ability to display radio station broadcast websites, animated logos and an electronic program guide.

The radio was developed with Malaysian-based Inventec Electronics, a subsidiary of Inventec Multimedia & Telecom in Taiwan, a leading manufacturer of personal video recorders, VoIP, and digital televisions.

The radio industry is conducting digital broadcasting trials in Sydney and plans to rollout the new technology in metropolitan areas over the next two years, with regional areas to follow soon after.  More info on digital radio at View PDF

14-Oct-05  INDUSTRY WELCOMES DIGITAL ANNOUNCEMENT

 

The commercial radio industry welcomed the Federal Government’s announcement today that it will clear the way for the introduction of digital radio broadcasting in Australia.

Joan Warner, the chief executive officer of peak industry body, Commercial Radio Australia, which represents 98 per cent of commercial radio stations in Australia, said the industry would now be able to move ahead with business planning and a multimillion dollar investment in the development of a digital broadcasting network.

“Today’s announcement is great news for radio because it means Australians will get vastly improved radio services with exciting new features, including more information and entertainment, multimedia content and better sound, all delivered free to air,” Ms Warner said.

“We’re delighted the government has given us the green light to move into the digital age, which will allow radio to compete on level playing field with other new and emerging technologies.”

Federal Communications Minister Helen Coonan announced the policy framework for digital radio at the National Radio Conference.

Ms Warner said the industry was pleased the government had recognised the importance of digital radio to the industry’s future but there needed to be more discussion about details of the policy.

“There are some elements of this policy that need a lot more discussion.  We want to ensure the amount of spectrum allocated to commercial radio allows us to provide the additional services and features that are necessary to take full advantage of the technology and drive consumer uptake.  Under the current compression technology, 128 kb is not enough to do this, we need 256kb.

“The Minister acknowledged our views and concerns in her speech and we are pleased consideration will be given to providing financial assistance for regional commercial broadcasters for the rollout.”

Ms Warner said the industry would invest an estimated $400 million over the next few years in rolling out digital radio services across Australia.  There will be a phased introduction, starting with the following capital cities and regions – Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Canberra, Newcastle, Wollongong, Geelong, Hobart, Darwin and the Gold Coast, Ms Warner said.  Planning for other regional areas would commence concurrently.

“Digital broadcasting technology is a quantum leap from AM and FM,” Ms Warner said.  “Features include the ability to pause and rewind live radio, to download programs for play back later, and small screens for pictures such as album covers, promotions, and traffic and weather maps.

“If the phone rings, you can hit the pause button and listen later.  A radio segment about cooking could be accompanied by a recipe on the screen, while an interview with an artist could be broadcast alongside their image, concert information or the lyrics of a song.  The effectiveness of the technology means stations will be able to split their signals and offer two audio programs simultaneously, such as two football matches or a package of highlights.  There is going to be enormous potential for radio to create innovative programming to capture the attention of the youth market and retain the loyalty of older listeners in a very competitive media market.”

The industry today unveiled a prototype of the world’s first digital radio capable of broadcasting pictures.  Further work will be undertaken on the prototype to develop broadcast website, animated logos and electronic program guide capability.

“We acknowledge it is going to take significant investment over a number of years to get digital radio up and running and to drive consumer uptake, but this is a strategic and necessary move for the industry to ensure that radio remains relevant to our listeners into the future,” Ms Warner said.

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11-Oct-05  RADIO DELIVERS GOOD FIRST QUARTER - AD REVENUE

 

The commercial radio industry has performed well in the first quarter of the 2006 financial year recording growth in advertising revenue of over four per cent (4.4%) to a total of $149.1 million – up from $142.8 million for the same time frame last year, according to the latest PricewaterhouseCoopers Radio Revenue Performance figures for the five major metropolitan markets released today.

PricewaterhouseCoopers Radio Revenue Performance figures for the five main capital cities show all markets achieving growth for the three months year to date ending September with the strongest growth in Perth (up 7.9% to $14.9 million); Brisbane (up 6.7% to $22.34 million); Adelaide (up 5.4% to $13.3 million); Melbourne (up 3.8% to $40.1 million); and Sydney (up 2.9% to $58.3 million).

Growth in advertising revenue for all markets in September was up 3.6 per cent to a total of $52.6 million compared to the same month last year.

Chief executive officer of industry body, Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said growth in the past quarter followed three years of strong growth - an increase of 11 per cent for the past financial year; an increase of about 12 per cent for the financial year ending June 04 and about five per cent for the year ending June 03 (PricewaterhouseCoopers Radio Revenue Performance figures).

“The first quarter result is very pleasing news for the radio industry and follows three years of strong growth – a great record in what is a very competitive market,” Ms Warner said.

“The industry is working hard to ensure positive growth continues with new ads launched earlier this year as part of our on-air radio campaign featuring some of Australia’s biggest advertisers and high profile business leaders,” Ms Warner said.

 

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson. Ph: 02 9281 6577 or 0402 214 039


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05-Oct-05  ROUND TWO 2006 SIREN WINNERS INCLUDES NEW CRAFT CATEGORY

Round two of the 2006 Siren Awards have been judged with the overall and single category winner announced as Brendon Guthrie and Tim Holmes from Grey Worldwide Melbourne for their advertisement, Vicious Circle Boy,

for Open Family – a 45 second commercial promoting the Open Family Longest Night Appeal on June 21.

The campaign category winner was Jay Furby and Andrew Allsop from agency, Arnold for its campaign called Insert Sports Star's Name Here for Skins Compression Garments.

Highly commended was awarded to Luke Chess and Vince Lagana from Saatchi & Saatchi for Killed by a Car for the United Nations.

Also awarded Highly Commended was Brendon Guthrie and Tim Holmes from Grey Worldwide Melbourne for their advertisement called Vicious Circle Girl for Open Family.

Guthrie said, “I read recently that last year’s Gold Siren winners, Josh Stephens and Ben Coulson, described radio as ‘pure’. I think they’re right. A great radio idea and script relies on nothing other than the team’s ability to think and write. Which probably explains why radio is one of the scariest jobs you get as a junior.”

“By offering a trip to Cannes and the chance to expose your best work to the world, The Siren Awards provide a great incentive for writers and art directors to rediscover the creative possibilities of radio.”

The winner of the new craft category, which recognises the important role of sound engineers in creating good advertisements for radio, was sound engineer, Sam Hopgood and creative director, Rodney Lowe from studio, Good Sense Audio (GAS) in Melbourne for its work on an advertisement called Hidden Bars for Tourism Victoria. The agency was Publicis Mojo Melbourne.

Creative director of Commercial Radio Australia and director of agency, Eardrum, and co-judge of the inaugural craft award, Ralph van Dijk said the way voices, music and effects are recorded and mixed, can make or break a radio commercial – hence the importance of the craft which has been recognised by creating this award.

“All the finalists were well produced, but the winner stood out because it was a more ambitious use of sound. It drew the listener in and painted a vivid picture. The execution of the idea was single-minded and congratulations should go to the client, who saw the potential of a script with so few words,” said Mr van Dijk.

Co-judge, Brad Grisaffe, senior engineer, Audiobrien said the winner stood out because it was a fine example of how creative use of audio can augment the brief, make a lasting impression on the listener and build strong brand recognition. 

“Craft really is the third key ingredient to great radio advertising, following on from first, a great idea, and second, great writing,” said Mr Grisaffe.

All the winning ads can be heard on the website: A new dedicated Cannes section has also been added to the Siren Awards website, where you can listen to all of the winning
advertisements from the 2005 Cannes Radio Lions.

Winners of Round 3 will be announced in a coming edition of Campaign Brief. Round 4 opens soon for entries in the Radio Single, Radio Campaign and Radio Craft categories. Entry is free and the annual winners receive a trip for two to the prestigious Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival, to be held in the middle of next year, with the winning entry nominated for the Radio Lions at the event.

Media Contact: Jenny Stevenson (02) 9281 6577 or (0402) 214 039


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04-Oct-05  RADIO CONFERENCE AND AWARDS NEXT WEEK

 

The 2005 National Radio Conference and Australian Commercial Radio Awards (ACRAs) will be held next week at the Sydney Convention & Exhibition Centre on October 14 and 15. This is the radio industry’s major annual radio fest, kicking off with the conference on Friday, and culminating with the 17th Annual Commercial Radio Awards on Saturday evening.

National Radio Conference - Sydney Convention & Exhibition Centre, Friday, October 14

Speakers include:

·        Barry Humphries – who has most recently completed a very successful, extended season on Broadway with “Dame Edna - Back with a Vengeance”, will talk broadly about the media, his career and life (keynote address starts at 9.30 am)

·          Federal Communications Minister Helen Coonan, will open the conference at 9.00 am, and will talk about digital radio

·          Jonathan Coleman (starts 11.45 am), presenter of London’s LBC 97.3 FM weekend show, will talk about the art of a celebrity interview

·          KPMG’s Bernard Salt (breakfast presentation starts at 7.45 am) will discuss the business implications for radio of Australia’s big shift

·          FM radio founder Glenn Wheatley (starts at 11 am) on the way ahead for Australian radio as FM celebrates 25 years

·          Update on electronic testing for ratings and where to for Australia: panel starts at 12.30 pm and includes summaries about the latest devices and testing from overseas

·          Francis Currie, Group program director for Chrysalis Radio, one of the UK's largest commercial radio networks with more than six million weekly listeners, including London’s number one breakfast station, Heart FM, talks about tapping into what listeners’ want from radio (starts 11 am)

·          Programming Super session: Leading Australian network program directors including ARN’s Jeremy Millar, DMG's Dean Buchanan, Austereo's Grant Tothill, Southern Cross's Graham Mott and Macquarie Regional Radio's Rod Brice, plus UK-based Chrysalis/Heart's Francis Currie will talk about the impact of digital radio on programming, how to make good breakfast shows and how to find good talent (starts 12.30 pm)

 

Australian Commercial Radio Awards (ACRAs) Sydney Convention & Exhibition Centre - October 15 (red carpet starts at 6 pm and Hall of Fame is announced at around 8.30 pm)

 

The Australian Commercial Radio Awards (ACRAs) is the industry’s night of nights and is attended by more than 800 people, including many of Australia’s well-known radio personalities. Australian music stars, Jimmy Barnes, Paul Mac and Thirsty Merc will headline this year’s event and MC for the night is well-known, FM talk personality, Paul Murray of Nova 96.9 FM’s weekday 10-12pm timeslot.

Organised by Commercial Radio Australia, on behalf of the radio industry, the Awards include 29 categories, which cover all areas of radio broadcasting including news, talk, sport, music and entertainment. The ACRAs differ from television’s Logie Awards, in that they are peer judged with judging panels comprised of industry members. A feature of the Awards is the Hall of Fame, which acknowledges a lifelong commitment to the Australian radio industry.  Previous inductees have included Gary O’Callaghan, John Laws, Bob Rogers and Paul Thompson. 

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson or Judy Shaw. Ph: 02 9281 6577.  Please RSVP so we can register your name at the door for entry.
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29-Sep-05  AUSSIE MUSIC STARS HEADLINE RADIO AWARDS

 

Australian music stars, Jimmy Barnes, Paul Mac and Thirsty Merc will headline this year’s Australian Commercial Radio Awards (ACRAs) to be held in Sydney on October 15.

Jimmy Barnes, Australian rock legend, has been one of the most played Australian artists on radio . Jimmy has been performing as an artist for over 30 years and his latest album, Double Happiness debuted at number one on the national album chart and was seven weeks in the top ten.

Clubland legend, Paul Mac won an ARIA four years ago for his solo debut, 3000 Feet High. Since then, he has had several hits: Just the Thing and Sound of Breaking Up. His latest single, Sunshine Eyes is receiving lots of airplay on commercial radio.

Thirsty Merc, a finalist in the 2003 New Artists to Radio showcase, entered the charts earlier this year with their single, Emancipate Myself. Their catchy, self-titled debut album, Thirsty Merc, has gone platinum.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said the radio industry was keen to support the Australian music industry and this year had decided to include the winner of the New Artists to Radio (NA2R) showcase, which identifies future, Australian chart toppers, as a guest performer at the Awards.

“One of the NA2R eight finalists announced earlier this week: After The Fall; Aleyce Simmonds, Clint Crighton, Dead Day Sun, Faker, Figgkidd, Jake Nickolai and the White Room will join Australian music legends, Jimmy Barnes, Paul Mac and Thirsty Merc and perform at the Awards – a wonderful opportunity for these young artists to perform with Australian stars,” Ms Warner said.

MC for the Awards night is well-known, FM talk personality, Paul Murray of Nova 96.9 FM’s weekday 10-12pm timeslot.

Organised by Commercial Radio Australia, on behalf of the radio industry, the Awards include 29 categories, which cover all areas of radio broadcasting including news, talk, sport, music and entertainment. The ACRAs differ from television’s Logie Awards, in that they are peer judged with judging panels comprised of industry members.

Winners of the 2005 ACRAs, the 17th annual event, will be announced at a gala ceremony to be held at the Sydney Convention Centre on October 15.

“This year’s Awards look set to be very exciting and provide a great opportunity to recognise the achievements of Australia’s radio broadcasters and the role of radio generally in the community,” Ms Warner said.

“It will be a particularly special event for the industry this year, given the industry organisation, known as Commercial Radio Australia, is celebrating 75 years of representing commercial radio.”

The 2005 ACRAs enjoy the support of Arbitron, Nielsen Media Research, Australian Retirement Fund, RCS Sound Software, Comsyst and The Music Network.

Media Contact: Jenny Stevenson or Judy Shaw. Ph. 02 9281 6577


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27-Sep-05  RADIO INDUSTRY IDENTIFIES CHART-TOPPERS OF TOMORROW

 

The commercial radio industry today announced eight new and emerging Australian artists who it believes have the potential to be the next big things on the Australian music scene.

Four rock bands, three country singers, and a hip-hop performer were announced as finalists in the New Artists to Radio (NA2R) showcase and will be given the opportunity to make an impact on influential members of the commercial radio industry next month as a key step on the road to becoming the chart-toppers of tomorrow.

The eight artists are: After The Fall; Aleyce Simmonds, Clint Crighton, Dead Day Sun, Faker, Figgkidd, Jake Nickolai and the White Room. The acts, chosen by a panel of network radio program and music directors from over 50 submissions, will perform for the national commercial radio industry next month, opening the door for all important commercial radio airplay.

The acts to be featured include:

After The Fall:  Strapped with the best of what rock and pop have to offer, this band came together on the Central Coast of NSW in 2001.

Aleyce Simmonds: At 18, Aleyce burst onto the Australian music scene by winning the 2005 Telstra Road to Tamworth/CMA Global Artist Talent Search.

Clint Crighton: A singer/songwriter with shades of rock, roots and funk. At 18, Clint he has developed a truly unique sound, inspired by artists such as Bob Dylan, Counting Crows, Ben Harper and Cold Chisel.

Dead Day Sun: A four-piece rock band from Brisbane, formed in 2003, this band has toured in the USA and displays a raw rock essence and live energy.

Faker: A five-piece, Sydney band described as “the sort of music that Nick Cave writes when he is in a really good mood”, the band has been compared to The Cure.

FiggKidd: A 21-year old hip-hop artist from Sydney who credits Bankstown, in Sydney’s multi-cultural southwest, as at the heart of his musical eclecticism.

Jake Nickolai: Aged 21, Jake is an accomplished guitarist and singer, and is currently touring Australia as the opening act with leading country music entertainer, Beccy Cole.

The White Room: Spearheaded by brother and sister team, Marc and Steph Collis, a massive element of the Melbourne band’s sound is the vocal harmonies performed by the pair, who play guitar and drums respectively.

Judge and Nova 969 music director, Dan Bessant said the NA2R provided a unique opportunity for both radio programmers and music directors as well as upcoming musicians.

“New artists have a chance to showcase their talent to, and interact with, radio industry programmers and decision makers all in the one room!  In turn, it’s an opportunity for the radio industry to embrace local talent and find that next breakthrough artist or song for their station, “said Mr Bessant. 

“Artists were chosen who we felt had real and immediate radio potential.  It was important to not be too restrictive in terms of genre.  Keeping the ‘blinkers’ off allowed a very diverse number of acts to get through this year.  There is everything from hip-hop to pop to rock to country; some great male and female performers; and a mixture of solo artists and bands – all with commercial radio hit potential.”

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said it was essential for the radio industry to continue to support and nurture Australian artists.

“The NA2R event has been successful in helping launch the careers of artists like Kid Courageous, Delta Goodrem, Thirsty Merc, Sarah Blasko, Tammin Sursok, Jade MacRae and Eran James – all of whom went on to secure widespread commercial radio airplay and commercial success,” Ms Warner said.

“The finalists in this year’s event all have the potential to become the next big thing to be played on Australian commercial radio.”

The New Artists to Radio Showcase (NA2R), organised by Commercial Radio Australia, was first held in 2002 and was known as the New Music to Radio (NM2R) showcase, with the aim of encouraging the development of Australian music. For the first two years it was a joint effort supported by the commercial radio industry and ARIA, as part of the Australian Music Development Initiative (AMDI).

In 2004 it was run solely by commercial radio. This year, the NA2R has been relaunched with a new name and format, but its objective of supporting emerging talent to make the connection with, and be exposed to, commercial radio decision makers remains the same.

The eight finalists will perform to commercial radio programmers and music directors at a closed session at the annual National Radio Conference in Sydney on October 14. At this session, the programmers and music directors will select four artists to perform to around 300 senior members of the commercial radio industry at a special event that evening at the Sydney Convention Centre on October 14.

Based on their Friday night NA2R performance, one artist will then be invited to perform to over 800 members of the commercial radio and music industries the following night at the 2005 Australian Commercial Radio Awards on October 15 - alongside some of the biggest names in Australian music.

All the acts were chosen based on their commercial radio potential by a panel of radio network program and music directors. To be considered for the event the acts must not have achieved Top 40 status in Music Network’s Australian National Hot 100. They also must have a commercial release scheduled for the period from September 1, 2005 to January 31, 2006.

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson W: 02 9281 6577 Ph: 0402 214 039 or Judy Shaw Ph: 0418 415 965. Details about the artists attached (3 pages) Photos and contacts also available.

Commercial Radio Australia wishes to thank Studio 301 for its generous support of the New Artists to Radio (NA2R) event.


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22-Sep-05  VEGA 95.3FM NOW BROADCASTING IN DIGITAL

 

Sydney’s newest commercial radio station, Vega 95.3fm, is now broadcasting in crystal clear digital sound. 

Vega is the latest station to join the industry’s digital radio trial to test DAB (Digital Audio Broadcasting) technology.

Commercial Radio Australia chief executive officer Joan Warner welcomed Vega to the trial.  “Vega is one of 14 Sydney stations and 100 households taking part in the digital radio trial,” Ms Warner said.  “Focus group testing has shown a very positive reaction from our listeners, and the industry is confident DAB is the right technology to take radio into the future.”

The industry is eager to rollout digital radio nationally because it provides CD-quality sound and enables broadcasters to offer multimedia content on LCD screens, multilayered content and timeshifting functionality which will allow stations to compete more effectively against an array of new technologies such as mp3 players and 3G services which threaten to encroach on its audience.

New digital only content now being broadcast in Sydney includes:

* 2GB – text listing program information, station contact details, sponsor information and football match statistics such as try-scorers in live time.

* 2GB Plus – a secondary audio service providing NRL score updates, the Continuous Call Team and news updates round the clock.

* 2KY Extra – a secondary audio service providing racing highlights.

* Nova 969 – text listing artist and track title now playing

Consumers will need new digital radio receivers to access these services free to air, with affordable receivers available priced from about $200 up.

The developments come as new research shows digital radio is climbing towards mass market penetration in the UK.  There will be around 20 million DAB digital radios in UK homes by the end of 2009, up from 1.2 million at the end of 2004, according to a report from the Digital Radio Development Bureau.  This is a more than fifteen-fold increase, and equates to a household penetration of 40 per cent by the end of 2009.

The biggest growth is expected to come in products such as boomboxes, hi-fi systems, personal (handheld) radios, clock radios and the in-car sector.  The number of cars fitted with digital radios each year is predicted to grow from 15,000 units to 702,000 in 2009, largely from an increase in dealer fit and factory line-fit by major car manufacturers.

“These figures are very heartening and confirm that digital radio uptake will be slow to start but will grow quite strongly once the market takes off,” Ms Warner said.

The industry is waiting on the Federal Government to determine a policy framework for the introduction of digital radio in Australia.  An announcement is expected before the end of the year.    

Alongside Vega, other stations involved in the digital trial are Nova 969, 2GB, 2CH, 2UE, 2DAY FM, Triple M, 2KY, 2SM, WSFM, ABC Classic FM, ABC dig radio, SBS One and SBS Two.

Media contact: Judy Shaw. Ph: 02 9281 6577 or 0418 415 965.


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15-Sep-05  RADIO CONTINUES GROWTH IN FIRST HALF OF 05 - CEASA REPORTS

 

Commercial Economic Advisory Service of Australia (CEASA) revised figures, released late yesterday, for the first half of 2005 calendar year show radio continues to perform well in attracting advertising revenue with an increase of 8.9 per cent to a total of $416.38 million, compared to the same timeframe last year.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner, said CEASA’s Advertising Expenditure in Main Media report for the six months ended June 30, 2005 shows radio advertising continues to perform well in a competitive market with the metropolitan market recording growth of 8.7 per cent to a total of $275.3 million and regional markets growing by 9.2 per cent to a total of $141.1 million.

Radio also retained its share of total advertising revenue of over nine per cent.

Ms Warner said the radio sector’s ability to perform well was also highlighted with the latest PricewaterhouseCoopers Radio Revenue Performance figures released this week which show growth in advertising revenue for the major metropolitan markets for August at 10.6 per cent to a total of $51.2 million, compared to the same month in 2004.

“The two month year to date figures for July and August for the financial year show growth of 4.8 per cent which is pleasing considering July revenue was slightly down for the sector,” Ms Warner said.

Ms Warner said the figures highlight the effectiveness of the industry’s $60 million three-year brand campaign, which promotes the benefits of advertising on radio.

“The campaign over the past twelve months has exceeded our expectations in terms of generating awareness and altering the perceptions of radio. We have targeted big spending and growth sectors like finance and insurance, by using successful business executives to promote the effectiveness of radio in the most recent campaign.”

Ms Warner said advertising expenditure data compiled by Nielsen Media Research shows the retail sector is still the number one advertiser on commercial radio so far this year, but non-traditional advertiser categories such as recruitment, pet care and the communications industry recorded large percentage increases in radio ad spend.

“Retailers spent $72.2 million on metropolitan commercial radio advertising in the first six months of 2005  - down one per cent on the same period in 2004 - with Harvey Norman, Woolworths and Coles supermarkets the largest advertisers in the group.”

The top ten advertising categories with the largest spend for the first six months of 2005 were retail

(-1%); entertainment and leisure (- 7%); motor vehicles (up 8%); finance (-1%); media (-3%); services (up 15%); government (up 25%); real estate (-9%); insurance (up 68%) and food (up 9%).

Sectors with notable increases for the first six months of the year compared to the same timeframe a year ago were alcoholic beverages (up 5%), recruitment (up 56%); communications (up 33%) and pet care (up 74%).

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson . Ph: (02) 9281 6577 or  0402 214 039

 


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13-Sep-05  FOUR ACTS VIE FOR BEST NEW ARTIST AWARD

 

Commercial Radio Australia today announced that Missy Higgins, Anthony Callea, Joel Turner and Tammin Sursok are finalists for the 2005 Best New Australian Artist on Commercial Radio Award.

The award is being sponsored by Austereo for the sixth year in a row with the winner receiving $50,000 in airtime across Austereo’s 2DAY and Triple M networks to promote current or future releases.

The chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner, said the finalists were selected based on a combination of success in the ARIA Top 50 singles chart and level of commercial radio airplay based on the Music Network’s Hot 100 Airplay list.

The ultimate winner will be decided by votes from commercial radio station program and music directors across Australia and will be announced at the 17th annual Australian Commercial Radio Awards to be held in Sydney on Saturday 15 October.

“It’s great to see Australian artists achieving chart success through commercial radio airplay and this award is about recognising this and providing a platform on a major music network for ongoing achievement,” Ms Warner said.

Voting for the winner by commercial radio music directors is based on eight criteria including the artists’ potential to succeed, the appeal of original material performed, credibility as a performer, willingness to participate in commercial radio promotions, level of listener requests, CD sales, chart position obtained and willingness to tour Australia.

The 2005 finalists all made the Top 50 singles chart for the first time during the judging period (1 July 2004 – 30 June 2005) and remained there for 10 weeks or more.  Also taken into consideration was number of songs in the Top 50 during that time and the amount of airplay achieved on commercial radio stations.

Missy Higgins’ Scar was one of the most played songs on commercial radio - in the Aria Top 50 for 21 weeks during the period and in the Hot 100 Airplay for 33 weeks.  Joel Turner’s single These Kids was also in the Top 50 for 21 weeks, while Anthony Callea’s The Prayer stayed in the Aria charts for 17 weeks and his second single Rain also did well, reaching number one on Aria and staying in the Hot 100 for 23 weeks.  Tammin Sursok also achieved big airplay with her singles Pointless Relationship (in the Aria charts for 15 weeks) and Whatever Will Be.

In addition, as part of the entire commercial radio industry’s commitment to fostering new Australian talent, the New Artists To Radio Showcase (NA2R), will be held in Sydney on Friday October 14 featuring 8 emerging and/or brand new artists presented to commercial radio. More information about this event will be announced at a media event on Tuesday September 27.

The 2005 Australian Commercial Radio Awards are organised by Commercial Radio Australia, on behalf of the industry. The Awards include 29 categories, which cover all areas of radio broadcasting including news, talk, comedy, sport and music across metropolitan, provincial and country radio stations.  The gala awards ceremony will be held at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre on October 15.  Master of ceremonies (MC) for the night is Nova personality Paul Murray.

Media contact: Judy Shaw. Ph: 02 9281 6577 or 0418 415 965


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31-Aug-05  RETAIL REMAINS NUMBER ONE WITH RADIO

 

Advertising expenditure data compiled by Nielsen Media Research shows the retail sector retained its place as the top advertiser on commercial radio in the first six months of this 
year, but non-traditional advertiser categories such as recruitment, pet care and the communications industry recorded large percentage increases in radio ad spend.

Retailers spent $72.2 million on metropolitan commercial radio advertising in the first six months of 2005  - down one per cent on the same period in 2004 - with Harvey Norman, Woolworths and Coles supermarkets the largest advertisers in the group.

The top ten advertising categories with the largest spend for the first six months of 2005 were retail (-1%); entertainment and leisure (- 7%); motor vehicles (up 8%); finance (-1%); media (-3%); services (up 15%); government (up 25%); real estate (-9%); insurance (up 68%) and food (up 9%).

Sectors with notable increases for the first six months of the year compared to the same timeframe a year ago were alcoholic beverages (up 5%), recruitment (up 56%); communications (up 33%) and pet care (up 74%).

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said the top ten spend sectors for radio advertising had been fairly consistent for some time including retail, entertainment and leisure, motor vehicles, finance, media and real estate with any small fluctuation in spend reflecting the particular industry’s own fortunes for that time.

“However, sectors like Government, insurance, food and services using radio is pleasing news for the industry – especially given insurance increased its spend by 68% and government by 25% in the first six months of the year compared to the same timeframe a year ago,” Ms Warner said.

Ms Warner said the radio industry had recorded strong revenue growth for the first six months of this year with PricewaterhouseCoopers Radio Revenue Performance figures for the five major metropolitan markets showing an increase in ad revenue of about nine per cent to a total of $275.2 million for this timeframe compared to $253.1 million for the same period in 2004.

“The industry’s $60 million three-year brand campaign has helped raise the profile of radio advertising. We have targeted big spending and growth sectors like finance and insurance, by using successful business executives to promote the effectiveness of radio in the most recent campaign.

“The latest advertisement, aired for the first time last month, features hot water systems manufacturer, Rinnai talking about its commitment to radio advertising and how effective that has been for the company,” Ms Warner said.

Mike Officer, Advertising & Communications Manager for Rinnai Australia, said “The Rinnai INFINITY brand name is the most recognised name in the Continuous Flow Hot Water market today. This has built gradually over the last 7-8 years solely because of our extensive use of the radio medium nationally. Even today, Rinnai still spends over half of its advertising dollars on Commercial Radio. It works so well for our category that every other 'bugger' has jumped on board the Radio bandwagon. Sometimes it's not nice to be followed!!!”

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson . Ph: (02) 9281 6577 or  0402 214 039

Top ten spend categories for Jan-June 2005 table attached

 

1.    Top Ten Categories for Commercial Radio for Jan-Jun 2005

 

Category

Radio Ad spend Jan-Jun 2004

($mil)

Radio Ad Spend Jan-Jun 2005 ($mil)

% Change 2004 vs. 2005

Retail

72.7

72.2

-1%

Entertainment and Leisure

29.0

26.9

-7%

Motor Vehicles

22.3

24.1

8%

Finance

18.2

18.1

-1%

Media

16.7

16.2

-3%

Services

11.8

13.5

15%

Government

7.7

9.6

25%

Real Estate

10.0

9.15

-9%

Insurance

5.0

8.5

68%

Food

6.8

7.4

9%

 

Source: Nielsen Media Research AdEx Estimates, JAN-JUN 2004 and 2005.


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15-Aug-05  RADIO AD REVENUE - LATEST FIGURES

 

Latest PricewaterhouseCoopers Radio Revenue Performance figures released today show a slight softening in radio advertising revenue nationally in July compared to the same month last year although some metropolitan markets have continued to record positive growth.

Nationally the advertising revenue for July in the five major metropolitan markets fell by about one per cent to a total of about $45.3 million compared to the same month last year, which recorded exceptional growth of about 25 per cent to a total of about $45.7 million.

Chief executive officer of industry body, Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said the marginal softening in July was indicative of a slower past six months and reflected what all other main media had been experiencing for some time.

“Radio has recorded good growth for the past three years and has been very resilient in continuing to attract advertising revenue compared to other media,” Ms Warner said.

”The figures released today highlight the differences in metropolitan markets with growth still positive in Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne but down a little in Brisbane and Sydney.”

Ms Warner said the industry was confident that positive growth would continue for commercial radio longterm because of radio’s effectiveness and efficiency for advertisers.

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson.  Ph: (0402) 214 039
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26-Jul-05  FINALISTS ANNOUNCED FOR 2005 RADIO AWARDS

 

Five of Australia’s best-known radio personalities - Alan Jones (2GB), Ray Hadley (2GB), Paul Murray (Nova 96.9 Sydney), Neil Mitchell (3AW) and Steve Price (2UE) - will battle it out to win the prestigious Best Current Affairs Commentator category for the 2005 Australian Commercial Radio Awards (ACRAs) after being announced today as finalists.

The well-known talking heads join many of Australia’s radio personalities and stars from across metropolitan, regional and country stations as finalists in the Awards, which will be announced at a gala ceremony in Sydney on October 15.

In the 25th anniversary year of FM radio broadcasting in Australia, the Music Presenter gong will be fiercely contested by finalists Bianca Dye (Nova 96.9, DMG) Simon Carey  (WS FM 101.7, Australian Radio Network) The Lab Rat, (2DAY FM, Austereo) and Anthony Maroon (Triple M, Austereo).

Seven of Australia’s best known on-air teams will compete for Best On-Air Team including Sammy Power and Jason Bouman (MIX 106.5, Sydney), Merrick and Rosso (Nova 96.9 in Sydney), Jackie O and Kyle Sandilands (2DAYFM), The Cage (Triple M, Sydney), Hughsey, Kate and Dave (Nova 100, Melbourne), Brendan Jones and Amanda Keller (WS FM Sydney) and Botica’s Bunch (Mix 94.5,Perth).

Finalists for the Best Metropolitan Talk Presenter include Ray Hadley (2GB); Alan Jones (2GB); Nicole Haack (Fiveaa, Adelaide); Neil Mitchell (3AW) and Steve Price (2UE).

Alan Jones will be vying to better his record from last year where he won Best Current Affairs Presenter for the second year in a row and Best Talk Presenter for the last three years (tied last year with Neil Mitchell).

Nova’s 96.9’s Merrick and Rosso will also be hoping to make it three years in a row to win Best On Air Team, which they have won for the past two years. This year they feature as finalists in five categories: Best On-Air Team, Best Networked Program, Best Station Produced Comedy Segment, Best Station Promotion and Best Community Service Project.

2GB’s Ray Hadley is also a finalist in three categories this year: Best Talk Presenter, Best Current Affairs Commentator and Best Sports Presenter while Austereo’s Kyle and Jackie O are finalists in Best Networked Show as well as Best On Air Team.

Organised by Commercial Radio Australia, on behalf of the radio industry, the Awards include 29 categories, which cover all areas of radio broadcasting including news, talk, sport, music and entertainment. The Australian Commercial Radio Awards differ from television’s Logie Awards, in that they are peer judged with judging panels comprised of industry members.

There is one new category this year – the Innovation and Excellence Award, sponsored by Southern Cross Broadcasting, which recognises excellence in innovation across all facets of radio including on and off air, sales, marketing, programming and management.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said this year’s Awards look set to be very exciting with MC for the night well known FM talk personality, Paul Murray of Nova 96.9 FM’s weekday 10-12pm timeslot.

“Paul won highly commended in the Best Current Affairs Commentator category last year so is eminently well-placed to handle the hosting role,” Ms Warner said.

“This year’s Awards look set to be very exciting and provide a great opportunity to recognise the achievements of Australia’s radio broadcasters and the role of radio generally in the community.

“It will be a particularly special event for the industry this year, given the industry organisation, known as Commercial Radio Australia, is celebrating 75 years of representing commercial radio.”

Ms Warner said a feature of the Awards is the Hall of Fame, which acknowledges a lifelong commitment to the Australian radio industry. Last year, radio personality, Gary O’Callaghan was inducted into the Hall of Fame. Other previous inductees have included John Laws, Bob Rogers and Paul Thompson.  Hall of Fame recipients are nominated by industry colleagues and decided by a high level judging committee.

The 2005 ACRAs, the 17th annual event, will be announced at a gala ceremony to be held at the Sydney Convention Centre on October 15.

The 2005 ACRAs enjoy the support of Arbitron, Nielsen Media Research, Australian Retirement Fund, RCS Sound Software, Comsyst and The Music Network.

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson. Ph: 02 9281 6577 or 0402 214 039

Note: Best New Australian Artist on Radio category still to be announced. A  list of finalists is also available at our website: View PDF

 

19-Jul-05  RADIO ADS CONTINUE TO PERFORM AND WIN INTERNATIONAL RECOGNITION

 

A new advertisement featuring John Symond, managing director of Aussie Home Loans, starts on-air this week promoting radio as an effective advertising medium, which is part of a campaign featuring some of Australia’s biggest advertisers and high profile business leaders.

The new ads are the latest in the radio industry’s $60 million three-year brand campaign which was short listed in May this year in the Radio category at the prestigious Clio 2005 Awards in the USA.

The ads short listed at Clio 2005 were the previously run “Muso”, “Voiceover” and “Over 55” ads, produced by agency Eardrum as part of the radio campaign, and run on-air last year.

Mr Symond said:
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13-Jul-05  STRONG GROWTH FOR RADIO AD REVENUE – NEW FIGURES FOR FINANCIAL YEAR

 

The commercial radio industry continues to perform well in attracting advertising revenue with the latest PricewaterhouseCoopers Radio Revenue Performance figures released today showing an increase of about 11 per cent for the past financial year to a total of $578.7 million – up from $520 million for the same timeframe a year ago.

Chief executive officer of industry body, Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said this figure followed two years of strong growth with an increase of about 12 per cent for the financial year ending June 04 and about five per cent for the year ending June 03 (PricewaterhouseCoopers Radio Revenue Performance figures).

“Attracting consistent growth over several years is indicative of a strong performance by the commercial radio industry and reflects the medium’s’ effectiveness and efficiency for advertisers,” Ms Warner said.

“The $60 million, three-year advertising campaign which promotes the benefits of advertising on radio has also been a contributing factor in raising the awareness about radio and has been very effective for the industry.”

PricewaterhouseCoopers Radio Revenue Performance figures for the five main capital cities show all markets achieving good growth for the past financial year with the strongest  Perth (up 15.7% to $58.8 million); Melbourne (up 14% to $157.8 million); Brisbane (up 13% to $83.5 million); Adelaide (up 10% to $52 million); and Sydney (up 7.78% to $226 million).

Ms Warner said analysis of the figures showed that growth was strongest for the first half of the financial year but the industry was confident that positive growth would continue for commercial radio.

“The industry is working hard to ensure positive growth continues with new ads launched last month as part of our on-air radio campaign featuring some of Australia’s biggest advertisers and high profile business leaders.

“The advertising campaign had so far made a significant contribution to the healthy growth in advertising spend for radio over the past three years and we are hoping that this new campaign will build on this growth and continue to communicate the benefits of radio to advertisers and potential advertisers,” Ms Warner said.

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson. Ph: 02 9281 6577 or 0402 214 039


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13-Jul-05  RADIO INDUSTRY SEEKS STARS OF TOMORROW

 

The search for new and emerging Australian music talent is on again with the radio industry announcing that its annual event, aimed at unveiling the chart-toppers of tomorrow, will be held on October 14 in Sydney. This year the event, formerly known as New Music to Radio (NM2R) has a new name, New Artists to Radio (NA2R) and will be held in conjunction with the Australian Radio Conference and 2005 Australian Commercial Radio Awards (ACRAs) at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre.

The event also has a new multi-phase format with eight acts chosen to perform in front of station music and program directors during the afternoon, who will then vote for four acts, which will go on to perform at the event that night. One act will then be chosen from this event to perform at the Australian Commercial Radio Awards to be held the following night, October 15, in Sydney.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said the new format would ensure that the successful acts with commercial radio potential are exposed to a wider range of key radio executives.

“The new name and format reflect a revamped and refined event this year which over the past three years, since its inception, has helped launched some very successful music careers,” Ms Warner said.

“Artists like Delta Goodrem (2002 NM2R) and Nessa Morgan and Thirsty Merc (NM2R 2003) all performed at the event early in their careers and some of the artists from last year’s event have received good commercial airplay – which is what we are all about.

“The commercial radio industry is committed to encouraging the development of Australian music and NA2R provides an important and innovative way of opening the door for emerging Australian artists to decision makers in the commercial radio industry.”

Artists who have received good commercial airplay since playing at last year’s event in October include Jade Macrae (her first single You Make Me Weak got to #76 on Music Network’s Hot 100 Airplay chart and second single So Hot Right Now got to #66); Bella (single About A Girl got to #3 on Country Airplay chart); Sarah Blasko (single Always Worth It got to #90 on Hot 100 Airplay chart); Tammin Sursok (three singles on Hot 100 Airplay chart) and Kid Courageous (single Is She Really Going Out with Him at #42 on the Hot Airplay Chart and second single Life’s a Movie at #51).

Ms Warner said the event was first held in 2002 and was an original concept of the Australian Music Development Initiative (AMDI), a joint commercial radio and record industry committee, chaired by Vicki Gordon, formed to look at ways in which the two industries could work more closely to promote Australian music. Commercial Radio Australia ran the event independently for the first time last year.

The eight acts chosen to perform in Phase 1 of NA2R this year will be selected by a panel of radio network program and music directors based on their commercial radio potential. To be considered for the event the acts must not have previously achieved Top 40 status in Music Network’s Australian National Hot 100 chart. They also must have a commercial release scheduled for the period from September 1, 2005 to January 31, 2006.

Commercial Radio Australia is calling for entries for acts interested in participating in NA2R with submissions closing later this month. For more information on NA2R visit Commercial Radio Australia’s website at commecialradio.com.au


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15-Jun-05  OLAY AD WINS ROUND ONE IN 2006 SIRENS

 

The Siren Awards for creative excellence in radio advertising have begun for 2006 with the winner of round one announced as Tim Brown and Pete Buckley from Saatchi & Saatchi (Sydney) for their advertisement about skincare product, Olay, called “Love”. The ad was the overall winner as well as winning the single category.

 

Judges of the round, Dale McGuinness and Dennis Koutoulogenis from BMF Sydney and also Silver 2005 Siren Award winners, said the Olay ad was a worthy winner.

Dale McGuinness said about the winning ad: “Well written, great talent and keeps you intrigued. Nice job lads.”

And Dennis Koutoulogenis said: “Advertising a product that promises younger looking skin on radio might seem a challenge, but the Olay ad does it brilliantly. The intriguing scenario and lovely use of humour keeps us interested and entertained till the end, when a simple product tagline reveals all. Well written, well executed – a worthy winner.”

The campaign category winner for round one was Julian Schreiber and Peter Hibberd from Young & Rubicam Melbourne for their campaign for the City of Melbourne called “Trevor” about the events of Moomba Waterfest 2005.

Highly commended in the campaign category was awarded to Lindsay Medalia from agency, 303 in Perth for his advertisement for the West Australian Department of Health called  “Go for 2 and 5” which aims to encourage people to eat two pieces of fruit and five vegetables every day.
 

Highly commended in the single category was awarded to John Box from Samuelson Talbot in Melbourne for his commercial “Opera” for The Age.

 

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said there had been a strong response to the inaugural Sirens Awards from both agencies and radio stations with the overall 2005 winner competing later this month in Cannes for the Radio Lions.

Ms Warner said a new craft category had been included as part of the 2006 Siren Awards to recognise the important role of sound engineers in creating good advertisements for radio. Entries for the new Craft category are already being accepted as part of Round 2 of the Siren Awards, which closes August 1.

“The way voices, music and effects are recorded and mixed, can make or break a radio commercial. The new Craft Category for the 2006 Siren Awards will recognise the important role played by sound engineers and hopefully encourage them to keep pushing boundaries in sound,” Ms Warner said.

Entries for round 2 of the Siren Awards opened on June 1 for material that has aired between March 1 2005 and July 31 2005. Entry is free via a dedicated website. Entries are submitted online with relevant information contained in an online entry form found on the website.

 

Media contact:  Jenny Stevenson (02) 9281 6577 or (0402) 214 039.      

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14-Jun-05  BARRY HUMPHRIES TO SPEAK AT RADIOFEST

 

Renowned Australian actor and entertainer, Barry Humphries will visit Sydney in October to be the keynote speaker at the commercial radio industry’s annual national conference.

Humphries, who has most recently completed a very successful, extended season on Broadway with “Dame Edna - Back with a Vengeance” will talk broadly about radio, as part of his career and life, at the conference on October 14.

Humphries joins an impressive list of speakers at the radio conference over recent years including Clive James and Bruce Beresford last year and previously, astronaut, Buzz Aldrin and Sir Bob Geldof.

Born in 1934 in Melbourne, Humphries is a multi-talented actor, artist and author. As an actor, he has invented many satiric Australian characters such as Sandy Stone, Lance Boyle, Debbie Thwaite, Neil Singleton and Barry (Bazza) McKenzie. His most famous creations are Melbourne housewife, Dame Edna Everage, who debuted in 1955, and Sir Les Paterson in 1974. It was Dame Edna – ‘internationally celebrated Megastar' - who achieved worldwide fame for both herself and her creator. Her greeting to adoring audiences of “Hello possums!” is now a part of the lexicon.

Humphries has collected innumerable honours for his stage and television work, including the Rose d’Orde Montreux in 1991 for his television show, “A Night on Mount Edna”, and a Sir Peter Ustinov Endowment, for his life work as an entertainer, at the Banff Television Festival in 1997. In 2000, he won a Special Tony Award for his Broadway show and a Special Achievement Award from the Outer Critics Circle.

He has toured in Germany, Scandinavia, the Netherlands and in the Far and Middle East, and recorded Dame Edna television specials for the BBC, London Weekend TV, NBC and Fox networks.  Humphries is also a successful landscape artist and is the author of several plays, books, novels, and autobiographies. He is married to Lizzie Spender, the daughter of British poet Sir Stephen Spender, and has two sons and two daughters.

Humphries will be joined at the radio conference this year by a fellow Australian who has worked extensively overseas, radio DJ, Jono Coleman.  Coleman is the presenter of London’s LBC 97.3FM weekend entertainment show and was formerly breakfast DJ on Heart 106.2, London’s most popular breakfast program. He also hosts My Generation on 90 radio stations nationally throughout Australia, and will talk about the differences between radio in the UK and Australia.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said the industry was thrilled to have Barry Humphries as the keynote speaker and was also very pleased with the overall program and diverse range of speakers expected at this year’s conference – the most important annual event for radio.

Topics to be addressed at this year’s conference include the latest on electronic measuring devices, digital radio, programming and the latest industry research.

Other speakers at the conference include:

* Francis Currie, program director from London’s highest rating station, Heart 106.2

* Sally de la Bedoyere – Rajar in London (update on electronic measurement tests in UK)

* Sheila Byfield, director, Mindshare Global Insights, UK

* Laurie Lawrence, former Australian swim coach and motivational speaker.

Media contacts: Jenny Stevenson or Judy Shaw. Ph: 02 9281 6577

 


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06-Jun-05  LAS VEGAS PRIZE FOR ENGINEERING AWARD

 

Commercial Radio is calling for entries for the Engineering Excellence Award to be presented as part of the 17th annual Australian Commercial Radio Awards.

The award is sponsored by Comsyst Engineering and the prize includes a scholarship of a return trip to Las Vegas to attend NAB, the world’s largest electronic media show.

The closing date for entries has been extended to 11 July 2005 and the winner will be announced at the radio awards gala ceremony at the Sydney Convention Centre on October 15.

The Engineering Excellence Award was established to recognise innovation in engineering and to foster professional development, said Joan Warner, chief executive officer of Commercial Radio .  Attending NAB is a fantastic opportunity to network with electronic media professionals from 130 countries and get up to date on the latest developments and ideas.

The award will be judged by a specialist team of industry engineers and executives.  The judges are looking for a single achievement or specific engineering project which is based on an innovative idea, demonstrates exception engineering skill, has broad application to the industry and/or achieves cost efficiencies.  The entry should address at least three of the four criteria.  The winner of the scholarship will not necessarily be the winner of the award, but will be chosen from among the finalists.

Last year's award winners were Max Healey and Alastair Reynolds from Southern Cross Syndication, who developed an innovative radio monitoring service to address the issue of station accountability to advertisers.  The service delivers an independent, accurate means of providing post time reports on radio campaigns as they are broadcast.  It removes the need to provide automation logs, and can report on the activity instantaneously, thus allowing any problems to be corrected quickly.

Mr Healey, who recently returned from NAB 2005, described the event as a wonderful opportunity.  'The NAB exhibition proved to be an excellent source of technical knowledge in my areas of interest. I was able to bring back several ideas that we could instantly use in our business, simply by talking to people who provide similar services in the .  This is above and beyond the new products you will see.  I gained a lot from the experience, both personally and professionally.'

His award-winning radio monitoring service uses digital audio watermarking to encode the commercials with a 48bit ID that is repeatedly embedded every five seconds.  The service has a web based reporting system that allows advertisers and account managers to log on and receive post times on their spots within minutes of broadcast.

Information about entering the Australian Commercial Radio Awards and conditions of entry can be found at the Commercial Radio website.

 

06-Jun-05  LEADING AUSSIE EXECS PROMOTE RADIO IN NEW AD CAMPAIGN

 

Some of Australia’s biggest advertisers and high profile business leaders have thrown their support behind commercial radio in a new on-air campaign starting today, which promotes radio as an effective advertising medium.

The new ads feature Harvey Norman’s chairman Gerry Harvey, John Symond, managing director of Aussie Home Loans, Carlton and United’s general manager of regular beer, Matt Keen; Caroline Ralph-Smith, head of marketing at Insurance Australia Group; Mike Officer, Marketing, Advertising Manager from Rinnai and Ian Alwill, group marketing director from Nestle Australia each talking about the benefits of radio advertising and how the use of the medium has helped sell their message and target their brands effectively. Comic, Mark Mitchell, also features as the intrepid interviewer, who talks to marketing people about why radio is perfect for their brand.

All commercial radio networks will air two of the 60 second new ads from today, with the remaining ads aired over the coming months. The ads are the latest in the radio industry’s $60 million three-year brand campaign which has been running since July 2003 and was last month extended for a further twelve months.

Gerry Harvey, chairman of Harvey Norman says that Harvey Norman is on-air most weeks of the year and with radio it is easy to adapt its message to suit each local market plus they don’t need much lead-time.

Matt Keen, Carlton and United Beverages’ General Manager of Regular Beer BLT said great scripts and the music was the key to the company’s successful VB radio ad which was awarded the best ad on radio in 2005 earlier this month at the inaugural Siren Awards.

Radio is an effective way to support and extend other media activity, enabling us to reach people when they are out and about and to make VB top of mind closer to the purchase decision.” said Mr Keen.

Creator of the radio campaign, Ralph van Dijk, co-owner and director of advertising agency Eardrum, said whilst earlier stages highlighted the versatility and effectiveness of radio advertising, the third stage reflects actual results from real advertisers.

 “There’s nothing like hearing success stories from the horse’s mouth, and brands like Insurance Australia Group, Harvey Norman and Aussie Home Loans have some great stories to tell,” said Mr van Dijk.

“We believe this approach will take the campaign to the next level, stimulate discussion within the media and advertising industries, and allow us to demonstrate some of radio’s key success stories from the last few years.”

The ads also continue to promote the fact that radio advertising throughout the day is twice as effective as television at reaching your audience and that most days, people spend around seven times longer listening to radio than reading a newspaper.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said the advertising campaign had so far made a significant contribution to the healthy growth in advertising spend for radio over the past two years.

“The commercial radio industry recorded its strongest growth in many years in 2004 attracting advertising revenue of $556.6 million  - a nearly 15 per cent increase over 2003, according to figures compiled by PricewaterhouseCoopers for the five major capital city markets,” Ms Warner said.

“Growth for advertising spend on radio continues to be positive so far in 2005 – so we are hoping that this new campaign will build on this growth and continue to communicate the benefits of radio to advertisers and potential advertisers,” Ms Warner said.

Ms Warner said featuring the VB ad as part of the new industry campaign was significant, given the original ad won the 2005 Siren Awards for best radio ad of the year.

“The VB ad is representing the Australian commercial radio industry at the Cannes Advertising Festival later this month where a radio category, Radio Lions, has been introduced for the first time.

“Radio advertising is now being taken very seriously at an international creative level and hopefully the industry’s own campaign aired today reflects the great strength of good radio ads,” Ms Warner said.

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson  Ph: (02) 9281 6577 or  0402 214 039
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23-May-05  RADIO CREATIVE WORKSHOPS FOR QUEENSLAND

 

International, award-winning radio advertising writer, Ralph van Dijk of UK-based agency, Eardrum, will be in Brisbane and Townsville later this week for workshops on how to write good advertisements for radio.

Co-owner of Eardrum and creative director of Commercial Radio Australia, Mr van Dijk has won over 100 national and international awards for creative excellence. He is also responsible for the $60 million brand campaign in Australia, which promotes radio as an effective advertising medium and has been very successful since its inception two years ago.

“The creative message is the single biggest variable when judging the success of a radio campaign. With more and more brands turning to the medium – some for the first time – it is vital that creatives and advertisers know where its power lies. This workshop is designed to provide practical tools to improve the standard of creative and show clients how to judge the work they are presented,” said Mr van Dijk.

The workshops are targeted for radio station creatives as well as a separate workshop for advertising agencies. Topics covered will also include how to create good ads; why radio can be very effective as part of an advertising mix and identifying what works well for brands on radio.

The workshop for the radio station creatives and their clients will look at more tactical campaigns and take in to account the reduced lead-times and budgets. The agency workshop will focus more on how to incorporate a brand message into radio commercials.

The workshops are organised by Radio Queensland in conjunction with Commercial Radio Australia.

Tickets are still available and cost $60 for the Brisbane workshops and $55 for Townsville. They can be purchased online at View PDF

20-May-05  VB CAMPAIGN WINS 2005 GOLD SIREN AWARD

 

The Victoria Bitter campaign has won the inaugural 2005 Gold Siren Award, for creative excellence in radio advertising, and will be automatically entered into the Cannes Radio Lions, it was announced today.

The advertisement, written by Josh Stephens and Ben Coulson from George Patterson Partners (Melbourne), with creative director, James McGrath, uses comedy and the well-known VB theme song to sell beer.

Member of the Siren Creative Council, comprising leading creative directors from national advertising agencies, which judged the Award and co-owner of UK-based agency, Eardrum, Ralph van Dijk said the decision was based on originality, creativity and impact with all finalists displaying a high standard.


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16-May-05  JOHN SAFRAN TO SPEAK AT RADIO MASTER CLASS

 

Former advertising award-winning writer and now television comedy writer and performer, John Safran will join Little Britain’s Matt Lipsey as the main speakers at a seminar this Friday (20 May) in Sydney about writing comedy for radio.

A former employee of Clemenger BBDO, John Safran is a self-described guerilla TV maker but rose to notoriety in 1997 on Race Around the World. His latest documentary, John Safran vs God, takes a quirky look at religion throughout the world.

Matt Lipsey directed the second series of the BBC’s back comedy, Little Britain which has just finished airing in Australia and also has extensive experience in directing and writing comedy for television and radio in the UK.

Also speaking at the Master class is Ralph van Dijk, creative director and co-owner of Eardrum, UK – an international award winning advertising agency, which specialises in writing advertisements for radio.

The Master class will also include a panel session on casting, directing and writing for comedy as well as individual sessions on how to bring comedy to life through character development and setting scenes. It will also focus on the special skills needed to write for radio; the terror of the blank page and situation versus character comedy and how Australian comedy writing compares internationally.

Organised by Commercial Radio Australia, the Master class will be preceded by a breakfast where the inaugural winner of the 2005 Siren Awards will be announced. The winner of the Siren Awards – established to acknowledge creative excellence in radio advertising – will receive entry into the Cannes Radio Lions and a trip to two for the festival in June. A winner will be chosen from the winners and highly commended from the first three rounds of the Awards and will be judged by the Siren Creative Council - comprising leading creative directors from national advertising agencies. Australian entertainer, David Campbell, will host the breakfast.

Tickets are still available for both the breakfast and Master class. Both events will be held at Taronga Zoo in Sydney on May 20. The breakfast will run from 8am to 9:30am and the Master class will follow the breakfast and includes lunch, concluding at about 2pm.Tickets are now on sale at $545 for the breakfast and Master class combined and $40 for breakfast only. For more information contact Louise Allan (Ph: 9281 6577) and to download your ticket booking form visit the dedicated website View PDF

09-May-05  DIGITAL RADIO VITAL TO INDUSTRY'S FUTURE

 

The commercial radio industry has outlined a vision for a digital future that will see consumers offered a wide range of innovative new free to air content, including secondary layers of audio streams and data channels providing mini concerts, news and sports statistics, graphics and slide shows in addition to a radio station’s main programming.

In a submission to the Federal Government on the introduction of digital radio, the industry argues that these value added features will be necessary to drive the uptake of digital radio and allow the industry to compete against the threat of emerging technologies such as content services on mobile phones, digital music players and streamed audiovisual services over the Internet which are increasingly targeting its audiences.

“Digital radio represents a natural evolution for commercial radio, just as digital television is replacing analog television and digital mobile phones have replaced analog mobile phones,” says the submission by industry body Commercial Radio Australia.

“Commercial radio broadcasters need to move forward rapidly with digital over the next few years to be able to compete in the digital age and to retain relevance to advertisers and to listeners,” the submission says.  “The commercial radio industry is positive and enthusiastic abut the opportunities that will arise from the introduction of digital radio technology in Australia.”

The industry supports a full conversion model based on Eureka 147 technology, with digital broadcasting eventually replacing AM and FM following a lengthy simulcast period to allow time for consumers to replace existing radio sets in homes and cars.

Compelling new content such as secondary layers of audio streams and data channels will be required to encourage listeners to purchase digital radios, the submission says.  The types of services that could be offered include mini concerts, “best of” highlight packages, comedy segments, special consumer promotions, artist and album information, sports statistics, weather and traffic maps and slide shows.  A bit rate of 256kb per second will be necessary to provide these extra services and to ensure consumer enjoyment and uptake of the new technology, the submission says.

Broadcasters have called for a moratorium on new entrants for at least 10 years, arguing the industry is still adjusting to a dramatic increase in competition resulting from the issue of nearly 300 commercial and community radio licences between 1995 and 2001.

“Advertising is the major source of revenue for free to air in band commercial radio broadcasters and with commercial radio industry profit growing by just 0.2% between 1999 and 2003, the industry knows that digital radio is the only way to guarantee the future, and to ensure that the 3500+ people who work in radio stations across Australia continue to have a job to go to,” the submission says.

Significant investments in broadcast infrastructure, the creation of new content, and audience education and marketing will be required to make digital radio a reality but returns on this investment will not be obvious for some time, the submission says.

Both commercial operators and the ABC rejected the notion of multiplex licences being awarded to third party operators.  The commercial radio submission says such a model could lessen diversity and will be uneconomic for commercial broadcasters particularly regional and smaller commercial broadcasters.

Media contact: Judy Shaw. Ph: 02 9281 6577 or 0418 415 965.


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09-May-05  DIGITAL RADIO GOVERNMENT SUBMISSION

View Commercial Radio Australia's full submission to government on the introduction of digital radio by viewing the PDF below...


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04-May-05  CONTROVERSIAL LAMB CAMPAIGN IN THE RUNNING FOR CANNES

 

A Meat and Livestock Australia advertisement which sparked controversy over its use of the term “un-Australian”, has been named the winner of round three in the 2005 Siren Awards for excellence in radio advertising, and will compete for the grand prize of overall winner - entry into the new radio category at Cannes and a trip for two to the Awards Ceremony.

The winner of the 2005 Siren Awards and the Cannes trip will be announced at a breakfast to be held at Taronga Zoo in Sydney on May 20. A Siren Master class, focusing on comedy writing, will be held straight after the breakfast. Matt Lipsey, director of the successful BBC television comedy series, Little Britain, will be a special guest at both events.

Chief executive officer of industry body, Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner, said there had been a very strong response to the 2005 Siren Awards.  “These Awards are providing a fantastic opportunity for Australian writers to receive peer recognition for their work, and for Australian radio advertising to be judged alongside the world’s best at Cannes,” Ms Warner said.

The writers of the Round 3 winning advertisement, Dennis Koutoulogenis and Dale McGuinness from BMF agency in Sydney, will be contenders for the overall winner as will the winners and the highly commended of the previous two rounds of the Siren Awards.

The winning advertisement, which featured ex-Aussie Rules footballer Sam Kekovich criticising vegetarians and declaring it “un-Australian” not to eat lamb on Australia Day, was a hot topic for talkback radio and prompted a handful of complaints to the Advertising Standards Board requesting it to be banned.  The board ruled the advertisement was “clearly satirical” and said it had received as many compliments as complaints.

Judges for Round 3 were previous Siren winners, Christine Isaac and Tony Leishman, from The Campaign Palace, Melbourne.  Both judges were very impressed with the winning advertisement, called “un-Australian” .

“For a radio ad to have wall to wall voice and still hold your attention and keep you chuckling all the way through is a winner,” said Christine and Tony.  “You just want to play it over and over again to catch another funny phrase. The fact that it caused a little controversy and a lot of talk back radio conversation breaks it away from the pack of bland advertising messages that no one notices. It's well written, well produced and it would be very un-Australian of us not to vote for it.”

The winner of the Radio Campaign category for Round 3 was Clemenger BBDO Melbourne for its Just Jeans advertisement titled “Geoff/Evan/Pamela” which featured three commercials to promote the sale of Jeans for Genes Day t-shirts in Just Jeans stores. The writer was Josh Robbins.

Two advertisements were awarded Highly Commended - The Campaign Palace in Melbourne for its advertisement for the Anti Cancer Council called “Breathe Phone Number” written by Paul Fishlock and Ralph van Dijk; and Y & R Mattingly in Melbourne for its advertisement for Nando’s called “Black Betty”. The writer was Doogie Chapman.  

The Siren Awards are a new national advertising award designed to encourage excellence and creativity in radio advertising.  The Siren Creative Council, a group comprising leading creative directors from national advertising agencies together with radio representatives, will now judge the annual winner of the 2005 Siren Awards from among the winners and highly commended in the first three rounds.

The winner will be automatically entered into the inaugural Cannes Radio Lions award and will receive two tickets to attend the prestigious 52nd Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival to be held in June 2005.

Ms Warner said both the breakfast and Master class would be excellent events and provide great insights into improving the effectiveness of radio advertising.

“Tickets are selling fast despite limited seating and are still available by contacting Commercial Radio Australia”.

Both the breakfast and Master class will be held at Taronga Zoo in Sydney on May 20. The breakfast will run from 8am to 9:30am and the Master class will follow the breakfast and includes lunch, concluding at about 2pm.Tickets are now on sale at $545 for the breakfast and Master class combined and $40 for breakfast only. For more information contact Louise Allan (Ph: 9281 6577) and to download your ticket booking form visit the dedicated website sirenawards.com.au.
Media contact:  Jenny Stevenson (02) 9281 6577 or (0402) 214 039.

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18-Apr-05  SIREN AWARDS BREAKFAST AND MASTER CLASS

 

The winner of the 2005 Siren Awards for creative excellence in radio advertising will be announced at a gala breakfast in Sydney next month featuring international comedy director, Matt Lipsey, of BBC TV’s “Little Britain” fame, and Australian entertainer, David Campbell as host.

The breakfast will be followed by the inaugural Siren Master class - a creative seminar focusing on comedy, and featuring leading Australian comedy writers and performers.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said the annual winner of the 2005 Siren Awards would be chosen from the winners and highly commended from the first three rounds of the Awards and would be judged by the Siren Creative Council - comprising leading creative directors from national advertising agencies. The 2005 winner will be automatically entered into the inaugural Cannes Radio Lions – to be held in June and will also win two tickets to attend the festival.

“This provides a fantastic opportunity for excellent Australian radio creative to be judged along with the world’s best at one of the most prestigious events held for creatives and will provide a great benchmark for the industry,” Ms Warner said.

“The Siren Master class also provides a rare opportunity to hear from some of the best writers, directors and performers of comedy and to learn from them about how to write effectively and creatively for radio.”

People attending the Master class will hear how the comedy geniuses outside of advertising approach the writing, directing and performing of comedy. Matt Lipsey, director of Little Britain, which started as a radio show, will be sharing his experiences on making the series and how to bring comedy to life through character development and setting scenes.

“Radio is hugely important, particularly as a spawning ground for talent. Including comedy in radio advertisements is hugely valuable and a difficult skill – making a pictureless medium humorous is very challenging,” Mr Lipsey said.

Writers and performers at the Master class will also be discussing topics such as breaking comedy stereotypes, the terror of the blank page and situation versus character comedy.

Both the breakfast and Master class will be held at Taronga Zoo in Sydney on May 20. The breakfast will run from 8am to 9:30am and the Master class will follow the breakfast and includes lunch, concluding at about 2pm.Tickets are now on sale at $545 for the breakfast and Master class combined and $40 for breakfast only. For more information contact Louise Allan (Ph: 9281 6577) and to download your ticket booking form visit the dedicated website View PDF

14-Apr-05  RADIO AD CAMPAIGN TO BE EXTENDED

 

The $40 million, two-year on-air advertising campaign aimed at raising awareness of the effectiveness of advertising on radio will be extended for at least another twelve months from July 2005, taking the industry commitment to the campaign to $60 million in airtime over three years, chief executive of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said today.

“The campaign has made a significant contribution to the healthy growth in advertising spend for radio over the past two years – we hope to build on this growth and want to continue to communicate the benefits of radio to advertisers and potential advertisers,” Ms Warner said.

The Commercial Economic Advisory Service of Australia (CEASA) figures released yesterday show an increase in advertising expenditure for radio of over 14 per cent (14.2%) to $841.6 million for the 2004 calendar year.

This follows several years of consistent growth for the radio industry and according to CEASA figures released yesterday, radio accounts for 9.3% of total advertising revenue in Australia.

“Breaking through the nine per cent barrier is a major achievement for the radio industry,” Ms Warner said, “and underpins the ongoing strength of radio as an advertising medium.”

Ms Warner said growth for advertising spend on radio continued to be positive so far in 2005.

Latest figures released by PricewaterhouseCoopers for radio revenue performance for the five major capital city markets show an increase of nearly nine per cent (8.92%) to a total of $47.2 million for the month of March 2005, compared to the same time in 2004. For the nine months year to date ending March 2005, revenue increased by over 12 per cent to $432.6 million.

The figures show strongest growth for the nine months year to date to the end of March 2005 was recorded in Perth (16.4%); Melbourne (up 15.7%); Brisbane (up 14.5%); Adelaide (9.9%) and Sydney (8.7%).

“The industry is tracking well for the 2005 financial year highlighting the sector’s competitiveness – radio offers the best value of all main media in terms of reaching large audiences per advertising dollar,” Ms Warner said.

“The continuation of the advertising campaign is part of a concerted effort by the industry to sell the strengths of radio as an advertising medium to the business community as well as targeted sectors,” Ms Warner said.  

Changes in total advertising expenditure

Medium

2003-2004 % change

2002-2003 % change

2001-2002 % change

2000-2001 % change

Newspapers

9.8%

6.8%

-2.8

-6.8

Magazines

10.7%

6.6%

-0.7

-6.2

Television

11.7%

9.9%

6.8

-9.3

Radio

14.2%

4.9%

1.1

1.6

Outdoor

10.3%

13.6%

-3.7

-1.8

Cinema

12.7%

13.6%

-10.1

-7.0

 Source: CEASA Report, Advertising Expenditure in Main Media, 2004. Radio includes metropolitan, regional and community radio.  Data for television includes metropolitan, regional and Pay TV.

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson. Ph: 0402 214 039


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23-Mar-05  ENTRIES OPEN FOR THE 2005 RADIO AWARDS

 

Entries are open for this year’s Australian Commercial Radio Awards, the 17th annual event, which will be held in Sydney on October 15.

Organised by Commercial Radio Australia, on behalf of the radio industry, the Awards include 29 categories, which cover all areas of radio broadcasting including news, talk, sport, music and entertainment. The Australian Commercial Radio Awards differ from television’s Logie Awards, in that they are peer judged with judging panels comprised of industry members.

There is one new category this year – the Innovation Excellence Award, sponsored by Southern Cross Broadcasting. This Award recognises excellence in innovation across all facets of radio including on and off air, sales, marketing, programming and management. Judges will consider an individual or group project, which has demonstrated significant added value to a station or network through an innovative approach or project.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said the Awards provide a great opportunity to recognise the achievements of Australia’s radio broadcasters and the role radio plays in informing, entertaining and providing a voice for the community.

 “This year’s Awards are on track to be very exciting and we are hopeful of yet another record number of entries given the increasing popularity of the event,” Ms Warner said.

 “It is also a special year for the industry organisation, today known as Commercial Radio Australia, which is celebrating 75 years of representing the commercial radio industry.”

Winners from last year’s Awards include well-known radio personalities Alan Jones from 2GB; Neil Mitchell from Southern Cross Broadcasting’s 3AW; Bogart Torelli from ARN’s Mix 106.5; Nova’s Merrick and Rosso and Austereo’s Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O.

Ms Warner said a feature of the Awards is the Hall of Fame, which acknowledges a lifelong commitment to the Australian radio industry. Last year, radio personality, Gary O’Callaghan was inducted into the Hall of Fame. Other previous inductees have included John Laws, Bob Rogers and Paul Thompson.  Hall of Fame recipients are nominated by industry colleagues and decided by a high level judging committee. 

The 2005 Awards will be announced at a gala ceremony to be held at the Sydney Convention Centre on October 15.  Entries close at close of business on Friday, May 6. Information about entering the Awards, categories and conditions of entry can be found at the Commercial Radio Australia website at www.commercialradio.com.au.

Media Contact: Jenny Stevenson. Ph: 9281 6577 or 0402 214 039


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21-Mar-05  RADIO ARGUES AGAINST LIFTING CAP ON LICENCE FEES FOR MUSIC COPYRIGHT

 

The Australian commercial radio industry has argued against lifting the one per cent cap on licence fees paid to sound recording copyright owners, in a submission provided today to the Federal Government.

In its submission, Commercial Radio Australia, the industry group representing the commercial radio broadcasting industry, argues that rising costs and increased competition mean the industry does not have the economic capacity to absorb any additional costs from increased copyright fees, if the cap was removed or amended.

Currently, licence fees are collected by the Phonographic Performance Company of Australia (PPCA) on behalf of record companies and performers. The Attorney General’s Department announced a review of a legislative cap on PPCA fees in February this year.  The existing cap limits copyright fees paid by commercial and community broadcasters to PPCA to a maximum of one per cent of gross revenues.

The radio submission says: “According to the Australian Broadcasting Authority’s (ABA) broadcasting financial results, industry revenue grew by 21.7% between 1999 and 2003 but was outpaced by growth in expenses at 26.1% and all copyright fees at 24.6%.”

The submission says that in 2002/03, over 26% of commercial radio stations were unprofitable, largely in regional areas, and that if copyright costs were increased, the viability of many more regional stations, would be forced out of business or have to relocate resources away from certain types of programming like news and current affairs. It also argues that the one per cent cap provides certainty as far as copyright fees are concerned.

In its submission, Commercial Radio Australia says that with the $400 million roll-out of digital radio across Australia about to take place, any additional costs or expenses from a change to the copyright cap, might discourage broadcasters from investing in the technology.

The submission states that the current market rate of 0.4 per cent of gross industry revenue, which has been negotiated  between Commercial Radio Australia and PPCA over many years, is well below one per cent. It also says that the PPCA would continue to seek massive fee increases at every review opportunity if the law is changed.

“The one per cent cap is an economically sound and desirable form of regulation which ensures that PPCA does not abuse its monopoly power in the bilateral bargaining process with Commercial Radio Australia.”

The submission shows that fees paid by the commercial radio industry to PPCA have actually increased every year over the past 18 years, even with the existence of the one percent cap.  Latest figures available from the ABA show that the radio industry paid around $18 million in copyright fees in 2002/03.

The submission argues that the one per cent cap is not responsible for any economic loss for Australian musicians. It says that new digital technologies, competing entertainment products and structural changes taking place within the recorded music industry have all contributed to a drop in sales of recorded music in recent years.

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson  Ph: 9281 6577 or 0402 214 039. Media note: The submission is available on the Commercial Radio Australia website


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15-Mar-05  COMMERCIAL RADIO LEADERS IN CANBERRA FOR DIGITAL TALKS

 

The heads of Australia’s major commercial radio networks have gathered in Canberra for four days of meetings with Federal Government Ministers and backbenchers over the introduction of digital radio, an issue the industry considers vital to its future.

In an unprecedented show of unity, the industry leaders, representing over 250 radio stations, or 98 per cent of all commercial stations on air in Australia, will hold a series of 68 meetings with Government MPs to garner support for the rollout of digital audio broadcasting.

The delegations over the four sitting days will include top metropolitan radio executives such as Peter Harvie, Chairman of Austereo, Paul Thompson, Chairman and CEO of DMG Radio, Bob Longwell, CEO of Australian Radio Network, Tony Bell, MD of Southern Cross Broadcasting and Angela Clark, CEO of Macquarie Radio.  Influential regional radio leaders include Tim Hughes and Rhys Holleran, Executive Chairman and CEO respectively of Macquarie Regional Radioworks, Kevin Blyton, CEO of Capital Radio, Ron Camplin, CEO of Bathurst Broadcasters, Janet Cameron, CEO of Grant Broadcasters, Graham McVean, CEO Star Broadcasting and Stephen Everett, CEO of ACE Radio Broadcasters.

2GB broadcaster Alan Jones and Australian Radio Network personality Amanda Keller will also host a special presentation on digital radio in Parliament House on the evening of Wednesday 16 March.

Meetings include talks with Prime Minister John Howard, Minister for Communications Helen Coonan, Foreign Minister Alexander Downer, Attorney-General Philip Ruddock, Health Minister Tony Abbott and Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane.

“This is about demonstrating how important digital broadcasting is to the future of the industry,” said Joan Warner, CEO of national industry body Commercial Radio Australia.  “Analogue broadcasting has served the industry well for 80 years, but unless we move forward rapidly to digital broadcasting the industry’s future will be under threat from new and emerging technologies which offer a range of content and interactive options.”

“The entire commercial radio industry is united in its view. There is no disagreement between AM and FM broadcasters nor between regional and metropolitan broadcasters.”

Commercial radio broadcasters view digital radio as a long term investment and are prepared to spend an estimated $400 million in building a digital network, rolling out digital services nationally and driving consumer uptake of the new technology. 

“Digital radio allows the industry to provide better audio quality, a range of exciting new services and the innovation that listeners expect.  With the green light from Government, all commercial radio stations could be simulcasting in digital as early as 2007 in metropolitan areas, and in regional areas around Australia soon after that,” Ms Warner said.

Paul Thompson, CEO of DMG Radio Australia said: “Radio has demonstrated an extraordinary capacity, over many decades, to reinvent itself to meet fundamental changes in society and the changing needs of its audience.”

“Programming and technology have always underpinned this reinvention and the digital revolution uses both to allow the creation of the next era of radio.  The commercial radio industry has the expertise and commitment to use digital technology to create amazing radio for all Australians.

“We just need the Government to open the door to our future,” Mr Thompson said.

Tony Bell, MD of Southern Cross Broadcasting, said: “There is no other entertainment and information medium that people spend more time with than radio. If it doesn’t commence its migration to a digital platform in the very near future, the services it provides will be fragmented by other providers and the great medium of radio will be seriously marginalised.”

Tim Hughes, Executive Chairman of Macquarie Regional Radioworks, said:  “Digital broadcasting will allow us to provide listeners in regional and rural Australia with a stronger more reliable signal and more depth of local information.”

Peter Harvie, Chairman of Austereo, said: “The future is digital and radio welcomes the incredible opportunity and benefits of the technology.  Our industry will seize the advantage of the enhanced quality, relevance and technological value add of digital.”

The CEO of the Australian Radio Network, Bob Longwell, said the introduction of digital radio was the next step in the continuing evolution of commercial radio services in Australia.

“Much like the opening of the FM band changed Australian radio forever, we at ARN believe that if properly managed, digital radio will revolutionise the way Australians listen to and enjoy commercial radio in the next decade or so,” mr Longwell said. “We would urge the Federal Government to consider digital radio as a communications priority.”

 

BACKGROUND ON POLICY POSITIONS

Commercial radio has requested five key broad policy directions from the Federal Government to allow the industry to plan for a national rollout:
·          No cost spectrum for in-band commercial radio broadcasters
·          No new entrants for at least 10 years
·          Government assistance or licence rebates for regional commercial radio
           broadcasters to assist with significant capital costs
·          Broadcaster consortiums to own the licence for the spectrum in each LAP (Licence 
           Area Plan) (that is, the licence to operate the multiplex).
·          Each existing in-band commercial radio broadcaster is entitled to an equivalent
           amount of spectrum as they now hold in analogue - 256Kb or 1/5 multiplex.

These positions are broadly in line with those agreed for the introduction of digital television.

BACKGROUND ON DIGITAL RADIO

Digital radio is a powerful new technology that will allow radio broadcasters to transmit free to air over the airwaves a range of new and richer content.  Digital radio technology offers:
·          better, clearer, more reliable audio signals;
·          easy tuning from a list of stations on a small screen;
·          text, graphics, animation;
·          traffic and weather maps;
·          still pictures and short burst video streaming;
·          split signals so stations can offer two programs simultaneously – for example a
           sub-channel can offer looped news headlines, music news or program highlights or
           repeats;
·          advertiser information such as logos, phone numbers and offers as text or on a
           sub-channel and even in the future the capability to download a discount coupon or
           similar
·          specific and detailed emergency services information in times of crisis.

Media contact: Judy Shaw. Ph: 02 9281 6577 or 0418 415 965.

 


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14-Mar-05  RADIO TARGETS FINANCE SECTOR TO INCREASE AD SPEND IN 2005

 

Australia’s commercial radio industry is targeting the finance sector to boost advertising spend for 2005, with a new advertisement which goes to air on all commercial radio networks today.

The new 45-second advertisement, part of its $40 million brand campaign, highlights how banks can use radio more effectively to target investors – particularly people driving their cars on the way to work.

Chief executive officer of industry body, Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said the finance sector had been identified as one, which could use radio to greater advantage as an advertising medium.

“The finance sector traditionally uses print and television as its main message carriers but we believe radio can be used much more effectively by the sector to target very specific groups and ages,” Ms Warner said.

According to latest data by Nielsen Media Research, the finance sector increased its overall advertising expenditure by about 16 per cent in 2003/04 to $380 million, with most of the budget spent promoting home loan and credit card products.  Radio’s share of that advertising spend was about 9 per cent, compared with 41 per cent spent on newspaper advertising and 37 per cent on television advertising.

The commercial radio industry recorded its strongest growth in many years in 2004 attracting advertising revenue of $556.6 million  - a nearly 15 per cent increase over 2003, according to figures compiled by PricewaterhouseCoopers for the five major capital city markets. Latest data shows an increase of 9 per cent for February this year compared to the same time last year – and about 13 per cent growth across all major markets in the eight months year to date to the end of February.

 “A lot of new advertisers are being attracted to radio because it offers the best value of all main media in terms of reaching large audiences per advertising dollar.  We’re looking to build on this momentum in 2005 with these new ads.”

The new ads are the latest in the industry’s $40 million two-year brand campaign, which has been running since July 2003, and repeats the message that radio advertising during the day is twice as effective as reaching your audience as television and that Australians spend in an average week seven times longer listening to radio than reading newspapers.

Ralph van Djik, director of advertising agency Eardrum, who created the radio campaign, said financial brands had traditionally marketed themselves in very similar ways, both creatively and in their choice of media.

“With the greater emphasis on differentiation, an increasing number of finance brands are now finding success with radio advertising,” he said.

Ms Warner said a recent reduction in time for the mandatory legal tags at the end of finance related radio commercials would also be a significant new attraction for finance advertisers.

“Previously radio advertisements for fixed term loans that mentioned an interest rate required a 17 second tag warning at the end of the commercial. But the long tag will no longer be necessary after changes to the law, introduced in December last year, which reduces the warning time to seven seconds in all States and Territories except West Australia and Tasmania. It is expected that these two States will adopt the changes by the middle of this year.”

“This means finance advertisers will have more air time to sell their message which is good news for advertisers in the sector,” Ms Warner said.

“This change to the law should also be a strong motivator for the finance industry to consider using radio.”

Media contact:                Jenny Stevenson   0402 214 039
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28-Feb-05  2GB ANNOUNCES DIGITAL RADIO FIRST

 

In an Australian-first, Macquarie Radio Network’s top-rating station 2GB announced that they will begin a new NRL score service via the current digital radio broadcast trials.

The new NRL Score service will be available from March, and trial participants will be able to:

View up-to-the-minute game scores, whilst the game is still in progress

View scores on their screen in real time for games immediately after completion

Get behind the scenes details on try-scorers, statistics and players

After successfully developing the specialised technology, 2GB will launch the new service to coincide with the start of the NRL season, and the return of the Continuous Call Team on March 12.

“2GB is the home of rugby league radio. Our listeners want to know every detail of the game as its being played and dissect every move after the match. Our Continuous Call team, led by Ray Hadley, and the new NRL score service will give footy fans the ultimate coverage of every game we broadcast.

“We think the potential of digital radio is enormous and have reached an agreement with NRL Stats to conduct season long research on the trial of expanded text services,” said Macquarie Radio CEO Angela Clark.

Industry body Commercial Radio Australia, which is coordinating the digital radio trials on behalf of the Digital Radio Broadcasting Australia consortium, has experienced an overwhelming positive response to the digital radio trials from participants.  Listeners to 2GB’s sister station 2CH have been able to access track title and artist information on their digital radio text displays, as well as program information, news headlines and weather.


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17-Feb-05  WINNERS ANNOUNCED FOR ROUND 2 OF THE SIREN AWARDS

 

Writer, Christine Isaac, and art director, Tony Leishman, from Melbourne agency The Campaign Palace, have been announced overall winners of round two of the inaugural Siren Awards for excellence in radio advertising.

The team’s commercial for Jeans West, called “Harry”, was selected as the Single Category winner because of its engaging humour and sharp delivery.

“The ad was simple and engaging, came from the product and stayed funny until the end. It's up there with the best,” said judge, Ben Coulson from George Patterson Bates in Melbourne, winner of round one with co-worker, Josh Stephens.

“High panting is a real problem in the fashion world. Harry High Pants isn't just funny and engaging - it's relevant to the brand's positioning. It fits best,” said co-judge, Josh Stephens.

The Campaign Category in round two was won by Rob Sharples from Sydney’s Austereo Creative Team for his three 30-second commercials for City Gym, called “LipSync”.

Highly Commended was awarded to Matt O’Grady and Greg Knagge from Clemenger BBDO Adelaide for a commercial for Bank SA; as well as Brendan Greaney from Bristow Prentice Lambaart Budd for a commercial for VicUrban, the Victorian Government’s urban development agency.

The Siren Awards have been developed to help promote radio advertising and encourage excellence and creativity within the medium.  Winners will be announced every two months and an annual winner will be automatically entered into the inaugural Cannes Radio Lions.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said entries were now open for the inaugural Radio Lions which presented a great opportunity for Australian product to be judged with the world’s best.

The 52nd International Advertising Festival will be held 19-25 June 2005 in Cannes, France. This is the first year a radio category has been included and will be judged by a jury of 15 international members with Jury President, renowned advertising executive, Malcolm Poynton, the executive creative director of Ogilvy & Mather in London.

Chief executive officer of Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival, Terry Savage said: ”The introduction of radio in the most important awards show in the world today is overdue.  Radio is an important medium and it should be recognised as such. Australia, with a mature and sophisticated radio market must be well placed in terms of creative output to do well at Cannes.

Entries for Round 3 of the Siren Awards are also now open and will be received until Friday, 4 March.  For details about the Awards or how to enter, or to listen to the winning commercials visit the Sirens website at www.sirenawards.com.au.

Media contact: Jenny Stevenson. Ph: 02 9281 6577 or 0402 214 039

 


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14-Feb-05  DIGITAL RADIO TEST TRANSMISSIONS POWER UPGRADE

 

Digital Radio test transmissions commenced on the 17 November 2003.   To improve coverage and in building penetration the test transmission power will be upgraded in the week commencing 14 February 2005.  Please find below the digital radio technical specifications for the digital radio broadcast.

DIGITAL RADIO BROADCAST AUSTRALIA
TEST TRANSMISSION TECHNICAL DETAILS

Transmitter Location
Willoughby Transmitting Tower
24 Artarmon Road
Willoughby
Sydney

New Service Parameters

DRBA A
Bandwidth 1.536 MHz
Channel 9a-A
Centre Frequency 202.928 MHz
ERP up to12.5KW
Radiation pattern: Omnidirectional
Modulation: Eureka 147 DAB

DRBA B
Bandwidth 1.536 MHz
Channel 9a-B
Centre Frequency 204.640 MHz
ERP  up to12.5KW
Radiation pattern: Omnidirectional
Modulation: Eureka 147 DAB

DRBA C
Bandwidth 1.536 MHz
Channel 9a-C
Centre Frequency 206.352 MHz
ERP up to12.5KW
Radiation pattern: Omnidirectional
Modulation: Eureka 147 DAB

Technical Contact
Richard Morris
Commercial Radio Australia
5/88 Foveaux Street
Surry Hills NSW 2010
02 9281 6577
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01-Feb-05  RADIO KICKS OFF CAMPAIGN FOR 2005

 

Australia’s commercial radio industry will seek to woo advertisers in the consumer goods and finance sectors as it kicks off its brand campaign for 2005.

All commercial radio networks began airing the series of new 45-second radio ads this week, said Joan Warner, the chief executive officer of peak industry body Commercial Radio Australia.

“The first new ad for 2005 focuses on radio’s ability to reach busy consumers, particularly women with young children, and the fact that radio can also be very effectively used to differentiate brands,” Ms Warner said.

The new ads are the latest in the industry’s $40 million two-year brand campaign, which has been running since July 2003.

Ms Warner said the industry had identified fast moving consumer goods and financial products as sectors where radio could be used to greater advantage as an advertising medium.

“Radio is a flexible way to reach a mass audience given that Australians spend seven times longer in an average week listening to radio than reading newspapers,” Ms Warner said. “The first ad highlights radio’s ability to reach women throughout the day, whether they are at home, at work or in the car on the school run.”

Ralph van Djik, director of advertising agency Eardrum, who created the campaign, said the first commercial demonstrated how radio was one of the few ways advertisers can effectively reach busy home makers throughout the day.

“With no time to watch TV or read a paper, radio is a regular and constant part of many women’s lives, providing information, entertainment and companionship without interrupting their routine,” he said. “With three small kids, I found this commercial particularly easy to write, and I’m sure many listeners will relate to the mayhem in the scene.”

Data released recently by PricewaterhouseCoopers showed that metropolitan commercial radio stations attracted $556.6 million in advertising revenue in 2004, a 14.8 per cent increase over 2003 and the industry’s best performance in many years.

Media contact: Judy Shaw 0418 415 965


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17-Jan-05  RADIO AD REVENUE UP 15% IN 2004

 

Australia’s metropolitan commercial radio stations attracted advertising revenue of $556.6 million in 2004, a 14.8 per cent increase over 2003, according to new figures released today by industry body Commercial Radio Australia.

The data was compiled by PricewaterhouseCoopers for the five major capital city markets.  It showed Brisbane recorded the strongest growth in advertising revenue over the 12 month period ending December 2004 (up 24 per cent), followed by Melbourne (up 18 per cent) and Perth (15 per cent).  Sydney, which accounts for about 40 per cent of revenue, grew by 11 per cent and Adelaide by six per cent.

“The result was the industry’s strongest growth rate in many years, reflecting the buoyant advertising market,” said Joan Warner, chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia.  “A lot of new advertisers have been attracted to radio this year because it offers the best value of all main media in terms of reaching large audiences per advertising dollar.  We’re looking to build on this momentum in 2005 because radio continues to be extremely competitive, particularly when compared with some of the significant rate rises reported for other media.”

The PricewaterhouseCoopers data showed strong advertising conditions continued in the month of December, with metropolitan advertising revenue for radio up by 14.7 per cent to $50.3 million, compared with December 2003.  The growth rate for the six months ending December 2004 was 13.7 per cent compared with the same period in 2003.

The industry will continue to make a concerted effort in 2005 to sell the strengths of radio as an advertising medium.  Its successful brand campaign which has been running for 18 months will be refreshed and kicks off on February 1 with a new batch of 45 second creative spots to be run nationally on all radio networks.

“The first ads will target the FMCG (fast moving consumer goods) and finance sectors, focusing on radio’s flexibility and emotive impact, TV ad avoidance and radio’s ability to reach consumers who are often too busy to read newspapers,” Ms Warner said.

Ratings data shows radio increased listeners in 2004, particularly among the key 25-39 demographic in 2004.  The first radio ratings period of 2005 officially commenced this week, with survey results to be released on February 22. There will be eight surveys conducted by Nielsen Media Research during the year in each of the five mainland capital cities.  The cities will be in survey for 39 weeks with over 50,000 respondents to be surveyed nationally.

Media contact:   Judy Shaw   0418 415 965

 

Metropolitan radio ad revenue 12 mths ending Dec 2004

Market

Revenue ($mln)

% change over 2003

Sydney

$220.0

11.4

Melbourne

$150.3

18.4

Brisbane

$81.4

24.2

Adelaide

$49.8

5.9

Perth

55.1

15.1

Total

$556.6

14.8

Source: PricewaterhouseCoopers

 


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11-Jan-05  AUSTRALIA TO SEND 50,000 RADIOS TO TSUNAMI HIT AREAS

 

The Australian commercial radio industry is spearheading a mission to restore broadcast communications to survivors in tsunami-hit countries and is contributing up to 50,000 AM/FM portable radio sets to stricken areas.

Joan Warner, chief executive officer of industry body Commercial Radio Australia, said the initiative involved the donation of radio sets, fresh batteries and broadcasting equipment to survivors and broadcasters affected by the disaster, which has killed 150,000 people and left millions homeless.

The first batch of 5,000 radio sets will be shipped to Indonesia in a week’s time, with the rest to be dispatched to devastated areas over the next four to five weeks.

Ms Warner said the industry had also offered a number of engineers to help set up temporary broadcasting facilities in disaster zones. The volunteer engineers would be sent in small groups for short periods of time. The industry has also coordinated the provision of seven transmitters.

“Indonesia’s public broadcasters have said more than 30 of their employees are missing or feared dead, and many broadcasting facilities were severely damaged during the disaster,” Ms Warner said.

“Helping to restore radio communications to affected areas is a practical way the Australian industry can contribute to relief efforts and will provide a channel for authorities to communicate vital information about water, food and medical aid.”

Commercial Radio Australia has been liaising with the government’s AusAID agency on logistical and health issues for the volunteer engineers and transport of the equipment.

Commercial Radio Australia has also gained the support of the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) to coordinate the initiative through the region. The ABU, which represents 130 radio and television broadcasters in 54 countries, is asking its members to support the project through donating radios and broadcast equipment for Indonesia’s Aceh region, Sri Lanka and the Maldives.

One of the broadcasters that has been affected is Radio Republik Indonesia. It has managed to set up a temporary studio and AM and FM transmission facilities in Banda Aceh, but requires emergency broadcast equipment and a minimum 5,000 portable radios for the homeless.

The Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation has also requested FM radio receivers for survivors, while the Maldives needs battery-powered radio sets for eight temporary shelters each housing 500 to 3,000 people.

Media contacts: Joan Warner 0419 410 617 Judy Shaw 0418 415 965


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Commercial Radio Australia Limited | ACN 059 731 467 | ABN 52 059 731 467

Commercial Radio Australia Ltd, Level 5, 88 Foveaux Street, Surry Hills NSW 2010 Australia
Phone: (02) 9281 6577 Fax: (02) 9281 6599 Email: mail@commercialradio.com.au