A new industry digital radio campaign running on TV and radio starts tomorrow, but the majority of UK radio stations are not spreading the D Love.
The campaign, running on BBC TV stations including BBC One, BBC Two, BBC Three, BBC Four and BBC News positions digital radio as the perfect Christmas present.
In addition the Christmas D Love radio campaign will run on BBC Radios 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 Live, many BBC local radio stations and on major commercial radio stations including Capital, Heart, Classic FM, Magic, Kiss, talkSPORT, Smooth, Absolute Radio and many digital-only stations.
However, the majority of UK radio stations are not running the campaign, either because they have not been asked or because they refuse to do so. Some BBC local radio stations aren’t running the promos simply because their output is not available on digital radio, whilst others such as commercial group UKRD are not supporting the campaign. Group CEO William Rogers even labels it “an expensive waste of time and money” saying he wants his 16 radio stations to have nothing to do with it.
He said: “We remain of the view that it is quite wrong to ask people to purchase a DAB radio which, potentially, may not work well enough in the area they live in or indeed, be able to pick up the very station that they heard the advert broadcast on. It’s morally suspect at best.
“It also undermines those stations which are being denied the opportunity to migrate as a result of picking a platform for the migration of local radio which is wholly inappropriate and could even be outdated by the time this shambles gets sorted out. This campaign is an expensive waste of time and money and certainly not in the interests of either the consumer or local radio sector. We will have nothing to do with it.”
D Love will run on 104 out of over 300 stations in the UK.
The creative has been made by advertising agency RKCR/Y&R, responsible for Marks & Spencer and Virgin Atlantic advertising. In the TV campaign, D Love encourages Clive to give his wife a digital radio for Christmas, saying that he “cannot romance a lady to the sounds of a toaster”, and pointing out that digital radio, with “its smooth sound quality and fine choice of stations will make her go weak at the knees.”
It’s part of a 2-year £10 million radio industry campaign overseen by Digital Radio UK that runs through to the Government switchover announcement later in 2013.
Whilst reception of digital radio remains an issue in some areas, improvements are being made with the launch of new local digital radio services in 4 regions. These new local DAB multiplexes are being launched by Arqiva with the support of Global and the BBC, and bring local DAB stations to an additional 1.5 million people for the first time. The first new local DAB region is Oxford which will be switched on later in December by Culture Minister Ed Vaizey.
The Minister has confirmed that he is planning to make a radio switchover announcement during 2013, and is encouraged by progress being made on digital listening and the fitting of digital radio in new cars.
Digital Radio UK CEO Ford Ennals says: “There has never been a better time to buy a digital radio thanks to the great range of digital stations and the improvements made to digital coverage, and we are delighted that the new digital radio campaign is getting such great support. We believe that D Love will really break through the Christmas clutter and communicate that there is no better way to spread the love this Christmas than by giving a digital radio.”