Phil Dowse: The secrets to radio success


He’s the global radio guru credited with taking stations around the world to No. 1.

Now, award-winning radio consultant Phil Dowse – one of the pioneers of Australia’s Southern Cross Network – is sharing the secrets to his success.

In an interview with The Advertiser (subscription required) Dowse says getting a station to No. 1 is all about creating an irreplaceable, emotional experience.

And it sounds a pretty straightforward approach, from all accounts.

“Get the strategy right, deliver first-in-market tactics that demand you listen, and the ratings will soar.”

After nearly two decades at Austereo in Australia, Dowse moved to London to head up the company’s international consulting group ESPi.

In 2002, he founded Phil Dowse Media, and his influence on a world scale continues to this day, working in over 20 countries with around 120 stations at any one time.

Considered one of the most in-demand radio consultants across the globe, more than 90% of Dowse’s clients are the No. 1 stations in their markets.

Here in Australia, Dowse is a long-time programming consultant for ARN.

Dowse tells The Advertiser that when he started working in the UK, most English stations were superficial, boring and unwilling to do anything risky or out of the box.

“The exception to this was Christian O’Connell,” says Dowse.

Dowse is also credited with introducing initiatives to UK radio such as the use of lie detectors.

“My legacy was giving permission for presenters to tell stories on-air, amplifying content and creating great moments,” Dowse says.

“This is now pretty much the norm. It’s also what podcasting and pop-up digital stations are all about.”

As far as Dowse is concerned, there’s a lot to be said for being first, cashing in … and moving on.

“There are so many good ideas out there, but the success or failure is based on the execution, how you do it.”

*Photo: LinkedIn

Comment Form

Your email address will not be published.

Recent comments (5)
Post new comment
Jodie Cannes
10 Nov 2023 - 3:35 pm

Phil is the greatest radio mind in Australia. Period. And I won’t hear a single bad word about him. His ideas from the 80’s have never been surpassed.

13 Nov 2023 - 8:25 am

Did Dowse ever work in any markets bigger than Adelaide though ?

13 Nov 2023 - 9:53 am

Never heard of this cat

13 Nov 2023 - 9:55 am

Hot Tub time machine!
Nice article !

13 Nov 2023 - 12:12 pm

Not exactly a fan favourite for many.


See all