SCA’s Dave Cameron slams ‘alpha male’ talent who ‘mansplain how to do good radio’

This week marked the fourth radio survey of the year, and all eyes and ears were on Melbourne Breakfast.

After a splashy campaign saw Fifi, Fev & Nick at The Fox take the top spot in mid-April, the trio have slipped to third in FM, behind Christian O’ Connell on classics station GOLDFM, and NOVA’s new signing Jase and Lauren, who jumped into second place.

Not troubling the ratings yet is the Kyle and Jackie O show, which maintained a 5.7% market share — compared to The Fox’s 9.5% — to sit in sixth place in FM breakfast, while lifting its cume by a modest 48,000.

ARN’s chief content officer, Duncan Campbell, told Mumbrella that this is a “positive” result, correctly pointing out that a rise in cumulative audience is followed by a rise in listener percentage.

Dave Cameron, Southern Cross Austereo’s chief content officer, isn’t troubled by Fifi, Fev & Nick’s half-point slide since last survey, nor by their blustering new competitors from Sydney.

“I guess we are really happy with Melbourne,” Cameron tells Mumbrella. “We have a very strong strategy to continue to stay super-focused on local listeners, local relevance, local talent. We have a really strong focus on our own listeners and our own product.

“We don’t really get caught up in the trash talk and the hyperbole of our competitor alpha male talent, who seemingly want to try and mansplain how to do good radio,” he continues. “We really have a zero distraction, 100% focus on ourselves and our listeners. We program everything for high profitability and high engagement.

“I think, Kyle and Jack coming into this market has been met largely with a combination of ambivalence from the Melbourne audience, and extreme concern from clients that don’t necessarily want to invest commercial dollars in that show, which I think is a concern for them.”

This client concern is “absolutely” helping SCA during an advertising downturn.

“Programming for profitability has got to be a key essence of our programmers these days,” Cameron explains. “It’s not just about the ratings numbers. It’s about client integration. It’s about keeping the audience happy. It’s about providing strong listening environments that are appealing for audiences rather than switching off for audiences, which doesn’t help clients.”

Cameron said SCA’s focus is the 25-54 age range, which he refers to as the “audience that matters”, pointing out that SCA is leading listenership in that demographic, nationally.

Dave Cameron

“The reason why that’s important, is that delivers 80% of our revenue. And particularly in difficult, challenging, advertising, economic times, you want to be able to have the lion’s share of the audience that your clients actually want for effectiveness.

“And so, it’s critical for us to make sure that we’re really focusing on that 25-54 audience. Outside of that area, means that we’re talking to an audience that doesn’t necessarily deliver us a commercial return.

“That’s why it’s critical for us that we stay focused on that demographic approach, and growing that demographic approach.”


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