Hit Network attempts to lure listeners with $1 million Alphabucks giveaway

Former Editor & Content Director

The Hit Network is ramping up its efforts to secure listeners across the country, announcing a $1 million prize for its Alphabucks competition.

Alphabucks launched on the network in 2017, and traditionally sees participants quizzed with 10 questions in 30 seconds. They need to answer all questions correctly with a specific letter. Each correct answer formerly scored them $100, with 10/10 correct answers sometimes scooping the prize pool up to $10,000.

This time, however, one winner of the competition will secure $1 million.

Hit Network listeners can register via Southern Cross Austereo’s (SCA) LiSTNR app and will have the chance to play on their local Hit Network.

Any player who successfully answers 10 questions correctly will become a national finalist.

The Hit Network’s Drive hosts, Carrie Bickmore and Tommy Little, will then host a Million Dollar Day – a live grand final event in November.

Bickmore said she is so excited to be giving away a guaranteed $1 million for the first time in Australian radio.

“We absolutely love our listeners and being part of their lives every day,” she said. “To give one of them this life-changing prize is the absolute cherry on top.”

Little added: “You know it’s a big prize when even the hosts are nervous. I’m genuinely shitting myself.”

Head of the Hit Network, Gemma Fordham, noted how much traction the game had secured in the market already.

“Alphabucks is the ultimate game that our listeners love to play, whether they’re screaming out answers in the car or playing on-air with our shows, it has become the highly addictive and welcome part of our listeners’ morning,” she said.

“Over the past four years, Alphabucks has continued to grow from an on-air contest to an app game, an on-air Alphabucks Kids version, and now Alphabuks will be more life-changing than ever before. Knowing a fruit that starts with the letter ‘G’ could be the difference between someone winning a million dollars or not.”

The Hit Network has been struggling to cut through in terms of share across the country, with mixed results in the most recent ratings survey.

Perth’s Mix 94.5 performed the best in terms of overall share, on 11.7%. Its Breakfast share was even higher – 12.7% – while in Drive it had 11.8%.

Brisbane’s B105 had a 9.2% share, 9.3% in Breakfast and 10.2% in Drive.

Adelaide’s SAFM had 7.9% overall, 8.6% in Breakfast and 9.1% in Drive.

Fox FM in Melbourne had a 7.0% share overall, 6.8% in Breakfast and 7.9% in Drive.

Sydney’s 2DayFM is faring the worst, with a 3.3% share overall and in Breakfast. Its Drive share is slightly higher at 4.1%.

SCA’s chief content officer, Dave Cameron, told Radio Today following the survey that he thinks about 2DayFM more than any other station. Part of the network’s efforts to lift 2Day’s ratings, he said, would be “dangling some carrots” to move the cumulative audience over the next couple of years.

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Alphabucks is DEAD
12 Jul 2021 - 10:46 am

Alphabacks is flogged to death. Can’t they come up with something new and original? Won’t make me want to listen to Hit more… and 1 listener will be 1 million dollars richer in the whole country, WOW! What are the chances? This is a network in crisis and desperate for listeners.

12 Jul 2021 - 7:23 pm

FFS! Good luck flogging this already tired tactic until November!

Would have been better off giving each local market 10 or 20 grand to give away locally with a clever market specific tactic.

When will these pickle salons learn? SCA are getting smashed locally and how do they combat it? With an obviously national contest that runs for months with an unachievable prize.

Just turn them off… Now!

Terry charles
12 Jul 2021 - 8:16 pm

You guys are saying this is the 1st time you have given away 1 million dollars on the network. Sorry you are wrong Matt and jo gave away 1 million dollars with there head in the sand promotion when they were on air. Wrong again fox

13 Jul 2021 - 12:41 pm

What a waste of money. They are desperate aren’t they. Contests don’t attract listeners the way they might have decades ago. No one listens to KJ or Howard Stern because of the chance to win something or a marketing gimmick. Content is key. And if they do want to spend that amount on giveaways, spread it out – say, a few cars for each metro station, or hundreds of hard-to-get PS5s or something, then everyone feels like they have a chance of winning.

Crave Sameron
13 Jul 2021 - 2:49 pm

I like to call these types of things “ego tactics” where they divert the attention off a messy music product and content that doesn’t resonate.

Lipstick/Pig situation right here.

Copy Paste
14 Jul 2021 - 1:20 am

@Terry charles
I could be wrong here but Matt & Jo was a dig competition with a “chance” at the million, which was underwritten by insurance.

This is slightly different here as there is no insurance, the prize is 1 million guaranteed.

Let’s be REAL
14 Jul 2021 - 9:34 am


Sounds like a group of bitter individuals here, who hurt you?

@alphabucks is dead – no chances here buddy it’s guaranteed. Huge statement to make that the network is in crisis but I guess you are all seeing all knowing.

@ohhnova – ohhhh shame we won’t have you listening. Is this already tired tactic the same as secret sound, or k&j’s everyone wins one or nova’s recycled Mystery Word? No, tired is reserved exclusively for Alphabucks.

@terrycharles – wrong. reading is fundamental. 1st time guaranteed.

@nerd – niiiiiiice

@crave Sameron – haha the old school dinosaur

14 Jul 2021 - 2:06 pm

isn’t alphabucks exactly the same as Kate Tim and Marty’s quickdraw?

Math is still important
15 Jul 2021 - 8:44 am

Let’s just break this down, offering a $1m giveaway which encourages people to register to an app to enter. This is likely to create a marginal spike in app listenership for the period of the competition then those people will likely move on elsewhere when the competition has finished, you will convert a handful but the volume will be negligible.

If you get 25,000 registered users then your cost per install/registration will be $40? based on your overall listening numbers the math’s is far too crook.

1 Nov 2021 - 1:13 pm

My Aunty really needs this 1 million for a new car she’s got 8 kids and has been struggling for 2 years she has been walking everywhere she was even waking when she was six months pregnant and she lost her partner due to suicide 1 year ago and she hasn’t been able to see her kids for 2 years it would really help us out been struggling for so long not asking for sympathy but some help


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