A new spot by WAVE Louisville, Ky., is taking its advertising message up a notch with a 60-second commercial that sells its services with sizzle. The spot not only promotes its creative production and reach to potential advertisers, it also acts a news image spot that sells its news ratings performances as well.
TV stations serve their communities in essentially two ways: By providing local news to its viewers and a platform for local businesses to advertise.
Stations aggressively and openly promote their local news coverage, but selling the advertising side to local businesses is not as apparent to the average viewer. That exchange tends to be done quietly, behind the scenes by station sales people calling on local businesses one-on-one to convince them of the wisdom of advertising on local TV.
A new spot by WAVE, Gray’s NBC affiliate in Louisville, Ky. (DMA 48), is taking that advertising message up a notch with a 60-second commercial that sells its services with sizzle.
The spot not only promotes its creative production and reach to potential advertisers, but also acts as a news image spot that sells its news ratings performances as well. So even if you’re not a local business owner, you get the message. Overall, it positions the station as exciting, hip and available on many platforms.
I would think that local business owners, once they’ve seen this spot on TV, would be more receptive when WAVE’s sales people come to talk.
“This sales reel is designed to show current and potential clients the capability of our creative,” said Kris Ellison-Baete, WAVE’s marketing director.
Ken Selvaggi, WAVE’s general manager, acknowledges that, due to the coronavirus crisis, WAVE’s business partners are struggling. “Creative is more important than ever now.”
To that end, the station has been helping its advertisers “with creative messaging and story development” that show sensitivity and reassurance.
The station offered local advertisers an opportunity to be part of a campaign thanking first responders, said Gary Pyles, WAVE’s creative services director.
According to Pyles, 36 advertisers participated in the campaign.
Pyles, who’s been at WAVE for 38 years, 35 of them in creative services, acts as the liaison between the clients and the station’s sales department. He said businesses are getting back into production as they make the transition into being open and ready for business.
“As places begin to reopen, I think it will be critical for our local businesses to understand that we are there for them and want to help them not only survive, but thrive,” Ellison-Baete said.
He credits Pyles for producing ads during the pandemic “that have been a strategic pivot for clients to fit the tone of our circumstances.”
The sales video is part of an on-going plan by WAVE to build an interactive section to its website devoted to sales, “that can guide a potential client through the products we offer, and puts faces to the names of our team members.”
Ellison-Baete said he envisions a guide for advertising through the pandemic to be included on the site.
NOTE: This isn’t the first time I’ve talked to Gary Pyles about his commercial work at WAVE. Pyles was the subject of a Market Share column back in 2016, WAVE Commercial Makes Doctors Look Like Rock Stars.
And if you want to find out how a “feel good” car ad helped a station corner the buy for another Kentucky station, click here.
Got some creative local TV commercials your station has produced either during the pandemic or anytime? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 817-578-6324.
And if you want to see more examples of local TV commercials produced by WAVE, click here.
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