This week we attended a Gorkana Breakfast meeting with Jonathon Boseley, Head of Programming, and Vikki Cook, Head of News and Current Affairs at London Live. As the new channel launches at the end of the month, it is important to understand how PR’s and the channel coordinators can work together and benefit from a hyper local channel – one of 19 to launch this year around the UK.
London Live’s main focus is supporting new talent and will be the only channel which has 3 hours of peak time original content. For comedy writers, budding drama creators and filmmakers not to mention budding presenters, this gives them a massive step up in their career.
But as the call to action may appear to be directed towards programming content this does not rule out the importance of a PR to help produce content (both news and other). PR’s can not only submit ideas forward for programmes – as long as they have a pilot episode prepared (this can be brand based but do bear in mind that it is still Ofcom regulated). One example series for this is a weekly show focused on one influential figure so perhaps PR’s can think about putting forward, for example, a new entrepreneur their client may have waiting in the curtains.
Another great opportunity is that whilst the channel only has a small news planning team, there is scope for PR’s to promoting London content (people/places/launches) which may otherwise be overlooked by national broadcasters and their London counterparts. London Live have a massive 5 and a half hours of news content to produce every day and it’s not just focused on the doom and gloom dominating some other London outlets coverage.
The news department will be looking at the news agenda at the beginning of each week and morning. PR’s are being encouraged to keep up social interaction as the channel are launching the London Eye – a section reaching out to bloggers and members of the public who can provide them with original content and commentary on stories. In terms of the running order, there will be a breakfast show from 0600 each morning that will look at the big questions of the day while the lunch time show will be 1 ½ hours long focused on news and current affairs (still maintaining a strong output of politics, business and social news), and the evening show which will look at more entertainment news.
It’s a really interesting shift to incredibly local content and bespoke news for regions. While it only targets a really local audience, it could be a fantastic opportunity to connect with them and engage them on a far deeper level that national media would allow.
Post by Daisy Bambridge, Project Manager @ TNR Communications