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Bauer rebranding 53 stations to The Hits/Greatest Hits

The majority of its acquisitions last year

WL
W1LL Yorkshire Look North (E.Yorks & Lincs)
I know it’s radio but seems a big enough development to warrant its own thread.

https://radiotoday.co.uk/2020/05/most-of-acquired-bauer-stations-to-become-greatest-hits-radio/

Not particularly surprising but disappointing to see the loss of yet more local brands.
Last edited by W1LL on 27 May 2020 2:20pm
WL
W1LL Yorkshire Look North (E.Yorks & Lincs)
One oddity I’ve noticed is that in Hull, Greatest Hits already exists on AM but Nation Broadcasting have licensed the use of the name for KCFM on FM. Seems a bit of an odd situation having the same station on AM and FM owned by separate companies, particularly considering the article notes the AM variant will have its own seperate drive time show due the Nation licensing agreement, whilst the Bauer owned stations will have a larger regional drive time programme.
LL
London Lite Founding member London London
There's also the possibility of 1152 AM being switched off in Manchester as small scale local stations in Wigan, Warrington and Widnes are becoming Greatest Hits Radio.
BR
Brekkie Wales Wales Today
I wonder how many shows, and hence jobs, have been lost in local radio since the turn of the century. Such a shame that way into broadcasting has largely been lost.
Turns out nobody had 2020 vision.
NJ
Neil Jones Founding member Central (West) Midlands Today
I wonder how many shows, and hence jobs, have been lost in local radio since the turn of the century. Such a shame that way into broadcasting has largely been lost.


Quite a few I'd say, considering the bulk of what passes for "local" radio these days is networked and its all about doing their best jukebox impressions. The days of "true" local radio are long gone, anything local is a 20 second insert into a national broadcast. Its a shame really, but its obviously far cheaper to play music all day than it would be to write, script and produce something unique.
BA
bilky asko Tyne Tees Look North (North East)
I know it’s radio but seems a big enough development to warrant its own thread.

https://radiotoday.co.uk/2020/05/most-of-acquired-bauer-stations-to-become-greatest-hits-radio/

Not particularly surprising but disappointing to see the loss of yet more local brands.


How depressingly crap.

Avatar Credit: © Independent Television News. Avatar Subject: Jonathan George Snow HonFRIBA
BB
BBI45 Central (East) East Midlands Today
Oh my god. I was fully expecting there to be more networking, but to completely swing the axe on so many local radio stations is just awful. Given how popular some of the names are, I can't see this move going down well with listeners. I'll give it a chance, but for me, Greatest Hits Radio will never truly replace my local station.
And of course, the thing you must not do if the ape is enraged is the Macarena.
JO
Josh
That's a shame. My local station is one of the ones due to rename and I don't think it will be a liked idea in my area as the brand is known for many things. Local radio is one of the things you can always rely on, especially in this day in age.

As BBI45 said, I don't think Greatest Hits Radio will ever truly replace the station.
Fan of the media industry from the UK.
JA
JAS84 Yorkshire Look North (E.Yorks & Lincs)
One oddity I’ve noticed is that in Hull, Greatest Hits already exists on AM but Nation Broadcasting have licensed the use of the name for KCFM on FM. Seems a bit of an odd situation having the same station on AM and FM owned by separate companies, particularly considering the article notes the AM variant will have its own seperate drive time show due the Nation licensing agreement, whilst the Bauer owned stations will have a larger regional drive time programme.

Bauer also owns another Hull station, Viking FM, so that probably explains that. Viking would have Bauer's programming.
LL
London Lite Founding member London London
Bauer once again have made some ridiculous decisions. Dump brands like Eagle, Minster and Yorkshire Coast Radio which overplay the local card really well in markets where there isn't much commercial radio competition and introduce a national oldies radio station on them.

Advertisers want to be able to attract either 15-24s or thirty something women, neither of which Greatest Hits Radio as a brand is actively attracting.

They've for some reason decided to keep Pirate FM in Cornwall, Lincs FM and Sam FM in Bristol as stand-alone services, while they introduce Hits networking on others and GHR across the majority of their new stations.
OV
Orry Verducci Anglia (West) Look East (West sub-opt)
BBI45 posted:
Oh my god. I was fully expecting there to be more networking, but to completely swing the axe on so many local radio stations is just awful. Given how popular some of the names are, I can't see this move going down well with listeners. I'll give it a chance, but for me, Greatest Hits Radio will never truly replace my local station.


This is no different to what Global has done with their stations, and based on Global's experience the reality is that while listeners might complain at first about loosing the local brands, in the long term they don't care. In fact they've gained listeners. From a TV point of view it's also very similar to what ITV have done, and it's done them no harm.

As long as listeners get a decent radio station that plays songs they like, they'll listen to it. Using national brands usually results in a better product, which is marketed better as they can run bigger ad campaigns (e.g. on regional/national TV), and usually results in a better sounding station even if it is less local. The use of split news and links often results in listeners not realising it's less local.

It's sad we'll lose established brands and that people will lose jobs, but it's a good business decision. The only bit I do find strange is that they've decided to roll out Greatest Hits to most the stations, whereas I would have thought the younger sounding Hits Radio would have been a better choice.
BB
BBI45 Central (East) East Midlands Today
BBI45 posted:
Oh my god. I was fully expecting there to be more networking, but to completely swing the axe on so many local radio stations is just awful. Given how popular some of the names are, I can't see this move going down well with listeners. I'll give it a chance, but for me, Greatest Hits Radio will never truly replace my local station.


This is no different to what Global has done with their stations, and based on Global's experience the reality is that while listeners might complain at first about loosing the local brands, in the long term they don't care. In fact they've gained listeners. From a TV point of view it's also very similar to what ITV have done, and it's done them no harm.

As long as listeners get a decent radio station that plays songs they like, they'll listen to it. Using national brands usually results in a better product, which is marketed better as they can run bigger ad campaigns (e.g. on regional/national TV), and usually results in a better sounding station even if it is less local. The use of split news and links often results in listeners not realising it's less local.

It's sad we'll lose established brands and that people will lose jobs, but it's a good business decision. The only bit I do find strange is that they've decided to roll out Greatest Hits to most the stations, whereas I would have thought the younger sounding Hits Radio would have been a better choice.

You are making some good points. I do agree that it's a bit strange that they've gone for Greatest Hits, when most of them fit Hits better.
And of course, the thing you must not do if the ape is enraged is the Macarena.

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