SBS Upfront: Brands boost investment in First Nations media via NITV with sales of Beyond 3%

SBS has used its 2023 Upfront event today to highlight the success of the Beyond 3% initiative in driving brands to invest in First Nations media, pointing to a growing investment in content on National Indigenous Television (NITV).

Anna Dancey, national sales manager NITV, announced that since its launch in March 2021, the Beyond 3% initiative has grown awareness of the channel, and driven significant lift in commercial investment in the channel – all invested back into First Nations content.

Anna Dancey, national sales manager NITV, and Tanya Denning-Orman, director Indigenous content SBS

“In the 18 months since we launched Beyond 3%, we have seen a number of major brands look to make First Nations media a part of their media schedule,” said Dancey.

“NITV revenue has increased fourfold, and every dollar goes back into NITV to create the unique content and vital services it provides for audiences.

“We’ve seen several major brands, such as Coles, NAB, Telstra and Google, make First Nations media a greater part of their media schedule, investing with NITV and demonstrating their commitment to First Nations storytelling.

“A question I often get from marketers is, can you show us what the investment has done for NITV? And the answer is, yes – take a look at Logie Award winning programs like powerful documentary Incarceration Nation and Little J & Big Cuz, breaking new ground in children’s television. Or the Walkley Award winning current affairs from NITV. And the coverage of moments that bring communities together such as the Garma festival in July, or the NSW Koori Knockout last month.”

NITV has also seen its audiences lift over the past 12 months with a 21 per cent increase in prime-time linear audiences on NITV, growing engagement across digital platforms, alongside a 27 per cent increase in the consumption of Indigenous content on SBS OnDemand, including NITV’s distinctive programming.

SBS is the home of First Nations storytelling, with NITV at its heart, and we’re delivering more than ever across the entire network,” said Tanya Denning-Orman, SBS director of Indigenous content. “Over the last year, we’ve increased the amount of new Indigenous programming across TV and on SBS On Demand by almost a third. That includes a growing investment in NITV – and all of that content is also being shared
elsewhere across the SBS network, reaching even more Australians.

“We provide a trusted platform for the issues and perspectives of First Nations communities to be heard, and we’re proud to be championing Indigenous excellence showcasing culture, Country and language in prime-time – and even for breakfast with the successful Big Mob Brekky each year during NAIDOC Week.

L-R Matty Mills, Luke Carroll, Tanisha Stanton, Rae Johnston and Tyrone Pynor.

“As a network, we do what no one else in Australia can – creating a bridge between the First Peoples of this country and the newest communities to call it home, using our unique superpower at SBS to share First Nations stories in more than 60 languages.”

In 2022, NITV also made the significant move from broadcasting one signal nationally to begin broadcasting to 12 markets. It has helped NITV in giving it the capacity to be able to deliver more targeted programming, including news, sport and weather, tailored for its audiences across the country, as well as introducing the capability for NITV to broadcast live events simultaneously to all five time zones.

“There is power in investing in First Nations stories and First Nations media. It empowers NITV as a business,” said Dancey. “This is self-determination in action. Our content has an impact well beyond broadcast and the more we can invest in making it, the more we invest in, careers and communities, and in First Nations voices being heard by more Australians.”

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples represent 3.2% of the Australian population, but it’s estimated that less than 0.3%of advertising in Australia invested in media is dedicated to reaching these audiences. Beyond 3% was launched in early 2021 seeking to engage media agencies and marketers to begin to address this gap by learning more about the role and value of First Nations media in Australia today, doing more to contribute to inclusion in the sector, and re-thinking media spend by committing to increasing investment in Indigenous media platforms to at least a 3% target.


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