‘Escorted from the basement’: Here’s how quickly Nova’s marketing team had to launch Jase & Lauren

After being unceremoniously dumped from KIIS late last year in favour of Kyle & Jackie O’s Melbourne debut, Jason Hawkins and Lauren Phillips were quickly scooped up by NOVA… and the turnaround was even quicker than it seemed.

Appearing on a new episode of Mumbrella’s one-on-one podcast, NOVA Entertainment chief growth officer, Adam Johnson, said the network picking up the breakfast duo was an easy decision: “When a show that has grown from a five share to a nine share in the space of a year becomes available, it’s your responsibility to look into that.”

However, just weeks after leaving KIIS and moving to NOVA, Johnson revealed that the marketing team had to hustle to launch Jase & Lauren – and that meant making some sneaky moves.

“I think it was probably mid-January, under cover of darkness, they came into our basement at NOVA,” he recalled.

“We each put, like, COVID masks and caps on them as they came up into our studios at 9pm at night – because they were still cleaning stuff around and some tech’s doing some work – and got them into the studio so that when we announced them two days later, we had press shots, which you guys ran, and everybody else did, of them in the night of the studio.

He explained: “A picture editor is going to do a search on Jase & Lauren and you’re going to run a picture of them in the KIIS studio.

“So taking those kinds of risks for the right reward was all part of the conversations we had leading up to it.”

In the latest radio ratings released just two weeks ago, Jase & Lauren pulled an 8.7 share for the Melbourne market.

Listen to the full episode with Johnson here.


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