Local TV marketers are navigating new territory so far in 2020, one few could have seen coming. In March, routine and normal turned into uncertainty and fear as the pandemic spread around the country. But what about now? What are your plans going forward?
Local TV marketers are navigating new territory this year that few could have seen coming.
In March, routine and normal turned into uncertainty and fear as the pandemic spread around the country.
And a return to any semblance of normal seems unlikely any time soon.
From March to today, TV station marketing become more about unity than rivalry. In some markets, like in Houston, Kansas City and especially in Richmond, Va., stations joined together like never before.
Instead of branding spots that focused on what made one station better or different from others, stations partnered to reassure all viewers with messages of hope and togetherness.
And then as stations helped their communities with telethons, fund raisers, food drives and town hall specials, it was the stations’ marketing departments that were charged with creating and airing spots to promote those events.
In the middle of all of this, the video showing the death of George Floyd by police set off protests in cities large and small all over the country.
Another major news coverage event that drove station marketing.
And perhaps where you are, the situation is pretty much the same.
But what about now? What are your plans going forward?
I got an email from Christian Mengel, the creative services director at KDVR, the Allen Media Broadcasting ABC affiliate in Medford, Ore.
“I’m reaching out to you because it’s that time of year where a lot of Creative Services/Promotions departments are planning marketing campaigns for a stacked Fall and holiday season,” wrote Mengel.
“Obviously, 2020 has been its own kind of beast and doesn’t appear to be slowing down any time soon. That being said, I’m particularly curious about stations being forced to change/adapt/evolve initiatives that probably aren’t going to be the regular status quo this year. Like High School Football? Nearly every station has specific local programming, sponsors, shows centered around High School Football … but it’s a very real possibility that a lot of markets aren’t going to have that as an option this year.
“A lot of stations participate in one or a few big community initiatives. Are stations cancelling what are normally big station initiatives, or are they actively exploring ways to still make an impact, but drastically change their game plan, and therefore, the marketing/promotions?”
So how are your marketing messages changed today? Is it more emotional marketing based? Or maybe your station is continuing with hard news branding but with a softer tone?
How is your station adapting to challenges as a community partner? What responses are in the works for normal news coverage, like high school sports or the lack thereof?
Let me know your thoughts. You can email your comments to email@example.com, or call me at 817-578-6324.
And share any and all promos related to this, please.
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