When I was a broadcast VP of marketing, I visited every TV station in our group often and regularly. And in the hallways of many were the old photos, usually in black and white, that traced the history of the station back to when it first went on the air, and then down through time. […]
When I was a broadcast VP of marketing, I visited every TV station in our group often and regularly. And in the hallways of many were the old photos, usually in black and white, that traced the history of the station back to when it first went on the air, and then down through time. The old equipment, the old cars, the old people, even the old characters that hosted Saturday morning kids’ shows.
No matter how big or how small the market, every TV station I’ve ever worked at or visited had these kinds of pictures displayed as a reminder of its history. The pictures tell the story of what each station means to the viewers there. I used to think, “we don’t really own the station, the viewers do; we’re just the current custodians.”
And once in a while, like on an anniversary, it’s entirely fitting that a TV station remind viewers of those contributions over the years. Sometimes there could be a marketing advantage to be gained. When I worked at WDSU, the NBC affiliate in New Orleans, I wanted the station to market itself as Louisiana’s First Television Station, although it was not first in the ratings at the time.
Last week, KFOR, Tribune’s NBC affiliate in Oklahoma City, celebrated its 65th year of broadcasting. A station of “firsts,” KFOR was Oklahoma’s first TV station, the first in the state to broadcast in color, the first to report a tornado warning (it used to be illegal for fear it would spark panic), the first to use color radar and the first to go high definition in the market.
“It is an honor to be a part of the team at this amazing station,” says Wes Milbourn, KFOR president and general manager. “Every day I walk through the door I think of how fortunate we are to work here. It is my home away from home with a rich legacy and a bright future.”
The station held an open house last Friday for employees, former staff, advertisers and guests who watched a video about KFOR’s past, the present and a glimpse into the future.
To see more on KFOR’s history, including a photo gallery, click here.
Since I’m always interested in how the end user feels, I asked Joe Kozlowski, KFOR’s creative services director, to send along some comments from viewers about the anniversary:
Lewis: Had no idea until this anniversary coverage of all the FIRSTS KFOR is responsible for in the broadcasting industry!!!! I was fortunate to have witness almost all of them.
James: Thanks for the memories.
Wendy: Great pictures.
Kristi: I remember my grandmom used to watch every day.
Scott: Congratulations KFOR, you truly are the best.
Sandy: Growing up in Oklahoma, I remember most all of the early days.
Ginger: Happy Anniversary … 65 years … must be doing something right … keep it up.