30 Under 30: Meet your Music winners
What would radio be without music? It’s key to so many stations’ identities, success and audience strategies.
So it’s time to meet the winners of the Music category in Radio Today’s 30 Under 30 competition.
Jake Powell, formerly B105’s music director at Southern Cross Austereo (SCA), who now works at Grant Broadcasters, alongside NOVA Entertainment’s Briar-Louise Rose and Jodie Williams, took out the category.
Here, each winner spells out exactly what they think the greatest challenge facing the industry is, and why they believe, despite the uphill battle, radio will continue to thrive.
Radio Today’s 30 Under 30 Awards were made possible by support from ARN, Nine, SCA, NOVA, ACE Radio and Sony Music.
Briar-Louise Rose, NOVA Entertainment
“In January of this year, my answer to this question would have looked very different.
“With the challenges of 2020, I would have to say our current climate of no international travel, lockdowns and social distancing – has meant no live music. Across the country festivals, concerts, pub gigs and Nova Red Rooms have been shut down. This has had a huge impact on my role personally.
“Flashback to 2019, we would be organising a Nova’s Red Room live event every month with artists coming to Australia for promo and tours. These live events were an exciting on-air tactic and a point of difference within the industry.
“Fast forward to 2020, we’ve reimagined Nova’s Red Room to be a completely virtual experience. Fans can enter the competitions on-air and online as usual, and they go into the draw to watch and chat with their favourite artists via livestream. This has given artists a new platform to connect with their fans through these challenging times.
“Next up is exploring how we can make socially-distanced live music events happen – wish us luck!
“Although there have been temporary solutions such as the above, the impact this pandemic has had on the live music industry is scary and devastating. I know we are all in the same boat when we say we hope 2021 will be different. For now, we must stay agile and show our support where we can – charities such as Support Act are extremely encouraging to see. 2020 has been a rollercoaster to say the least!”
Jake Powell, Grant Broadcasters (formerly Southern Cross Austereo)
“Immediately, COVID-19 is the biggest challenge to the radio industry. If people are not spending money, businesses will not have the budgets to advertise.
“An underlying issue though is a lack of foresight and a stubbornness to ‘stick to the old ways’. Businesses need innovation and to employ innovative thinkers. Radio is not different. By design, radio is obsessed with the next survey period. There is no obsession with the next 10+ years.
“A generalisation I have heard a lot is people under 30 do not listen to radio. Maybe there needs to be thought put into why that is. Could it be that radio (except for triple J) does not specifically target that demographic? Radio would consider that a risk (even though under 30s have so much disposable income, they want to travel, buy things and save up for houses).
“Fragmentation of attention is an issue. If the Spotify CEO Daniel Ek’s vision is that ‘Everything linear dies’, that could be a problem for the industry. Radio does not think long-term. Because of COVID, I find it hard to imagine the industry wanting to take risks for the next few years. If everyone is being defensive, is that not the perfect time to be innovative and ‘attack’?”
Jodie Williams, NOVA Entertainment
“Some of the biggest challenges in our industry is the growing platforms around us, music streaming and podcasting.
“Another challenge that we have come to face is the increasingly fast-paced lifestyle and short attention span of our listeners. God knows whoever is reading all these applications right now understands the need for content to grab attention.
“The silver lining is that we know what audiences need from radio to adapt to their faster lifestyles. Basically, they need EVERYTHING: their favourite songs, high-quality content and engaging audio. AND they want it in short time frames. WHEN they are listening. Radio can do this better than any of the other platforms.
“Competing platforms attempt to take on our resilient and special media, but radio adapts to find ways to keep our audiences and we do it better than any other platform.”
Stay tune next week as Radio Today uncovers more of the award-winning answers from our 30 Under 30 class of 2020.
You can listen to the special edition Radio Today Tonight podcast about the 30 Under 30 winners below.