How's that spelt?

Last time around, I mentioned SCA’s new radio app is called LiSTNR - continuing a tradition by radio companies to use a random spelling for a brand that they’ll want to promote on the radio a lot, thus meaning they’ll need to make much of their creative conveying how the thing is spelt, rather than what you can do with it.

True to form, the Hamish & Andy podcast is sponsored by LiSTNR, and, of course, the creative is all about how to spell it. “If it’s an app, then it would obviously be missing a vowel somewhere,” Hamish says, before Andy tells us it’s spelt “L I S T N R” (which is actually missing two vowels, Hamish).

This follows Mediaworks in New Zealand, who named theirs Rova (“Rova with an a”); and, many years ago, GWR Group’s “koko․com” website (now seemingly owned by Asian e-commerce company AliBaba) - “that’s kay-oh-kay-oh”.

Step forward Entercom, who own the brilliant RADIO․COM domain. Super-easy to use on-air, clearly conveys what it is (the word ‘radio’ is used by Spotify and Apple too), and… oh.

Someone in marketing has convinced Entercom to change the company name to Audacy, which is fine, I guess, call yourself what you want, even if it is a failed satellite communications company. Knock yourself out.

But they’ve rebranded the supremely simple RADIO․COM app to Audacy as well. Ordasee. OrderC. Ordacey. Audersea. Audacy. Or probably Audacity, since that’s what it’ll be auto-corrected to.

“Will it be obvious when it’s said out loud on the radio?” is a phrase that nobody who owns lots of radio stations seems to know how to say; but surely if you reach 170 million listeners on a monthly basis, as Entercom Audacy does, the very least you’d do is make sure that your new brand works for them?

Also…

  • Under “presenter essentials”, this is an interesting aggregator site of snippets of information to help “any presenter with their next link” / “any announcer with their next break” (I translated it for you, Aussies)

  • I wrote a thing about callsigns in the UK for an Australian radio website, because of course I did. Yes, the UK did once use callsigns, but stopped using them a little earlier than most countries.

  • DRM for FM (a new broadcast format) is being trialled in India. Not quite sure what the trial is for; given it was trialled ten years ago in Edinburgh, Scotland, with good results. Formerly known as DRM+, it’s relatively similar to HD Radio in the US, allowing for a number of subchannels and data services, along with an analogue signal if desired. Since it uses quite similar technology to DAB (and the same receiver hardware, excepting a software change), I remember suggesting - to agape mouths - that this should be part of the WorldDAB standard for countries who couldn’t use the Band III frequencies, or for whom a multiplexing solution was too politically difficult. Imagine what reception that idea got!

  • iHeartMedia has split in two internally - and I suspect we’ll see more of these splits. The divisions are now “The Fun Exciting Profitable Stuff” and “The Boring Legacy Broadcast Media Stuff That Investors Aren’t Interested In”. I believe their official names are slightly different.

  • In Switzerland, DAB is now the most-used radio platform.

  • Nish Kumar makes a good point about the game that the BBC is trying to play: to try and make friends with people who just don’t want to be friends with it.

  • Not a radio promotion, but could have been: a promotion for free sushi in Taiwan meant more than 150 people have legally changed their name.

  • I enjoyed speaking at Radiodays Asia this year, and interviewed Valerie Geller.

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