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Old 04-05-2013, 12:57
Station ID
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So the head of music moves on . . . . before he was moved on the new hom has never programmed the music for a radio station before and her only experience is a 3 day course in Selector and now, from what I'm hearing, they're going out and buying the prizes they give away on air - I would normally say that you couldn't make it up but with this lot you don't have to
Just because she's programming the music it doesn't mean she's left to her own devices. Programme Directors are usually in ultimate charge of the music and if the darabase and the rules are already in place scheduling isn't a huge task if you know your station and what makes good programming.

If you have an understanding of what music programming is about then you can learn selector. It's just a piece of software that can be learned just like a playout system. Not knowing master control doesn't make someone a bad presenter.
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Old 04-05-2013, 18:32
David Aycliffe
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Just because she's programming the music it doesn't mean she's left to her own devices. Programme Directors are usually in ultimate charge of the music and if the darabase and the rules are already in place scheduling isn't a huge task if you know your station and what makes good programming.

If you have an understanding of what music programming is about then you can learn selector. It's just a piece of software that can be learned just like a playout system. Not knowing master control doesn't make someone a bad presenter.
There used to be a skill in programming music, someone would lovingly sit down and craft the playlist but it seems, according to you, all that is now out of the window and all stations want is a press the button merchant. Hardly surprising then that radio in general sounds so bad and not having a decent hom certainly ain't going to improve this one which sounds bad enough already.
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Old 04-05-2013, 20:37
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There used to be a skill in programming music, someone would lovingly sit down and craft the playlist but it seems, according to you, all that is now out of the window and all stations want is a press the button merchant. .
Not at all quite the opposite infact and that's clearly demonstrated in my post if you'd care to read it properly.

I said
scheduling isn't a huge task if you know your station and what makes good programming.
I also said
If you have an understanding of what music programming is about then you can learn selector
That's where the skill comes into it and having been a music scheduler I can say that it's way more than pushing a button. The manual check and shifting songs around is vital.

Skills have to be learned and your post seems to have a downer on the new head of music because she's never done it before and has only had 3 days of selector training. As long as someone else like a PD has some experience and a good ear then she can learn all of these things. How is someone supposed to get experience if they are never given the chance. Any PD who lets their head of music just churn out the logs without checking themself deserves to have their station fail.

I first learnt how to schedule music on a major market station and I was left to it pretty quickly but I know that the PD was looking over the logs before they went into the studio and making changes if needed.
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Old 04-05-2013, 21:05
David Aycliffe
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Assuming I had one, I certainly wouldn't let loose an untried, untested with no programming experience and a 3 day selector course on my station and definitely not on a station, judging by all those that have been shown the door in the past year or so, that appears to be wobbling both in terms of finance and audience
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Old 05-05-2013, 08:08
jon craig
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Not at all quite the opposite infact and that's clearly demonstrated in my post if you'd care to read it properly.

I said

I also said

That's where the skill comes into it and having been a music scheduler I can say that it's way more than pushing a button. The manual check and shifting songs around is vital.

Skills have to be learned and your post seems to have a downer on the new head of music because she's never done it before and has only had 3 days of selector training. As long as someone else like a PD has some experience and a good ear then she can learn all of these things. How is someone supposed to get experience if they are never given the chance. Any PD who lets their head of music just churn out the logs without checking themself deserves to have their station fail.

I first learnt how to schedule music on a major market station and I was left to it pretty quickly but I know that the PD was looking over the logs before they went into the studio and making changes if needed.
Alternatively, I'd say that any PD who feels the need to check every log, and then make changes, probably needs a new Head of Music. I've met many PDs who have been great at managing and coaching talent but pretty clueless about music!

I agree with much of what you say though. The key to being a good programmer is understanding your station, knowing your audience, and having an ear for what works. The actual mechanics of using Selector can be taught far more easily than the judgment-call elements of the job like knowing what to add and what to take off - and when to do it.

By the way David, I'm curious about your connection with KMFM and the motives behind your posts - you've posted just a handful of times, almost exclusively to be critical of KMFM and seem to have a good degree of inside knowledge. Whilst news of Toby Mackenzie's departure may be available on line, the detailed knowledge you have of his potential replacement seems, to me at least, the kind of detail that's come from within the KM offices. Anything to declare?

By the way, good luck to Toby. The Orion job will be a huge challenge.
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Old 05-05-2013, 12:38
David_Ayling
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I see the station has a new presenter James Hall. as he has post on they facebook page.
only thing is there is no info about him on the stations website.
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Old 05-05-2013, 16:44
up to the vocal
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Some weird things going on,,on his weekly show Tony Blackburn has taken to using the body of the show to play 'the number one hits of this day ' from 1980 to 1999. Meaning he's often going to be playing the same songs in the same order for weeks on the trot, Already we ve had Bucks Fizz. Mc Cartney /Wonder and Spandau Ballet played out for the second week in a row. Jeez does this mean he's gonna play Bryan Adams for 16 weeks in a row at the same time?.And what does he always say ''I don't like to keep playing you the same old songs every week''.
As a format, whoever came up with it ,,it stinks.
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Old 05-05-2013, 19:41
David Aycliffe
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Anything to declare?
There is a connection with KMFM but I'm not it - I'm just disgusted at the way that management penny pinching has ruined a potentially decent local radio station and then allowed themselves to be talked into allowing this latest epitome of a miserable Heart clone
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Old 06-05-2013, 08:44
jon craig
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There is a connection with KMFM but I'm not it - I'm just disgusted at the way that management penny pinching has ruined a potentially decent local radio station and then allowed themselves to be talked into allowing this latest epitome of a miserable Heart clone
I'll be honest, I don't hear enough of KMFM on a regular basis to make a judgment on the quality of the output, but equally 'penny pinching' is an easy phrase to throw around when all they may be doing is cutting their cloth accordingly. It's tough out there - even more so probably for a group who have their roots in newspapers. Perhaps, instead of a constant stream of criticism, you could offer an alternative? How do YOU think they should be running their stations? You're quick to tell us where they're going wrong - what should they be doing differently?
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Old 07-05-2013, 18:05
David Aycliffe
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. . . but equally 'penny pinching' is an easy phrase to throw around when all they may be doing is cutting their cloth accordingly.
I've already commented on the reasons why I consider them to be penny pinching in an earlier post.
How do YOU think they should be running their stations?
They should never have been allowed to completely ditch all of their local programming for starters - getting rid of all the local breakfast shows was the final nail in the coffin and listeners left them in their droves - mostly in the east of Kent which is where they had their strongest but predominantly older audience. So, what did they do to hang on to this relatively loyal audience? Went younger and started aiming at the 15-25s - yes really It's obvious what they should have been doing but now it's far too late
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Old 07-05-2013, 18:22
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I've already commented on the reasons why I consider them to be penny pinching in an earlier post.
They should never have been allowed to completely ditch all of their local programming for starters - getting rid of all the local breakfast shows was the final nail in the coffin and listeners left them in their droves - mostly in the east of Kent which is where they had their strongest but predominantly older audience. So, what did they do to hang on to this relatively loyal audience? Went younger and started aiming at the 15-25s - yes really It's obvious what they should have been doing but now it's far too late
There are five KMFM radio companies and all of them made a loss in 2011 (the last available figures) according to Companies House. They all have net liabilities in seven figures and have been making losses for years.

The separate local breakfast shows were the product of a flawed licensing system, when it was thought that towns the size of Margate and Ashford could sustain their own viable commercial radio station. We now know that this isn't possible and with hindsight the licence should have been a countywide service for Kent (an additional one to the heritage Invicta staton).The shared programming policy was an attempt to correct this situation by Ofcom in 2010, to avoid the licences being handed back by a loss-making operator.

You can't stop the losses by hiring another four breakfast presenters, so that isn't the solution.
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Old 07-05-2013, 23:03
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The problem the KM have in my view is that across the board it's not considered a young brand, especially when it comes to it's newspapers. It has a loyal readership, probably consisting of people that are 40+ that feel some what alienated when they tune into their radio devision and discover it's not catered for them.

The previous playlist and format didnt work obviously. I would have gone for a Magic/Breeze sound for the station.

Fighting for an audience with the likes of Kiss and Capital which is what they are currently doing, is going to be a battle that's very difficult to win.
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Old 08-05-2013, 13:12
David_Ayling
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The problem the KM have in my view is that across the board it's not considered a young brand, especially when it comes to it's newspapers. It has a loyal readership, probably consisting of people that are 40+ that feel some what alienated when they tune into their radio devision and discover it's not catered for them.

The previous playlist and format didnt work obviously. I would have gone for a Magic/Breeze sound for the station.

Fighting for an audience with the likes of Kiss and Capital which is what they are currently doing, is going to be a battle that's very difficult to win.
yes i would have gone for the Breeze sound to. talking of the Breeze can you see KM-FM as the next station they have there eye on to by.
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Old 08-05-2013, 20:28
jon craig
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The problem the KM have in my view is that across the board it's not considered a young brand, especially when it comes to it's newspapers. It has a loyal readership, probably consisting of people that are 40+ that feel some what alienated when they tune into their radio devision and discover it's not catered for them.

The previous playlist and format didnt work obviously. I would have gone for a Magic/Breeze sound for the station.

Fighting for an audience with the likes of Kiss and Capital which is what they are currently doing, is going to be a battle that's very difficult to win.
But surely by adopting a Magic format, they will be just be up against Magic from London in the same way they currently might be with Kiss & Capital? What's the point in that? And every mention of The Breeze makes me shiver - have you seen the RAJAR figures it's South Coast stations have 'built' over the last couple of years. Truly shocking.
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Old 09-05-2013, 01:01
airwaves
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But surely by adopting a Magic format, they will be just be up against Magic from London in the same way they currently might be with Kiss & Capital? What's the point in that? And every mention of The Breeze makes me shiver - have you seen the RAJAR figures it's South Coast stations have 'built' over the last couple of years. Truly shocking.
In the west I agree but in the east of the county you can't receive the London muxes so a Magic format station isn't present. Kiss is available on D1, and Capital on NOW Kent.

But as you say, if it's the same principle in terms of being in competition with London based stations, it's no worse than what is already happening so i don't see your argument.
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Old 09-05-2013, 09:26
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In the west I agree but in the east of the county you can't receive the London muxes so a Magic format station isn't present. Kiss is available on D1, and Capital on NOW Kent.

But as you say, if it's the same principle in terms of being in competition with London based stations, it's no worse than what is already happening so i don't see your argument.
The main argument, as I see it, it quite simple. Small towns in Kent were never going to be able to sustain stand alone radio stations. It was a mistake by the regulator to allow multiple licences like that. Now we are seeing the consequences.

Even Invicta was always seen as the "poor cousin" when it became part of the Capital family in the 1990s. I'm surprised that OFCOM didn't see that the advertising market and the audience were always going to be attracted to London stations on FM.
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Old 09-05-2013, 10:07
Terry Purvis
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Even Invicta was always seen as the "poor cousin" when it became part of the Capital family in the 1990s. I'm surprised that OFCOM didn't see that the advertising market and the audience were always going to be attracted to London stations on FM.
I was at Invicta from 1984 until late 1994, encompassing the period when Capital first took over from Southern Radio and we weren't regarded as the "poor cousins". It's nearness to London was not the issue. Invicta suffered with a period of financial mis-management from 1988 until late 1991 when Southern took over and not from low revenues. Southern soon fixed things and when the group sold out to Capital, Invicta was in great financial shape. Capital made a lot of money out of Invicta.
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Old 09-05-2013, 11:45
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Ok, I stand corrected on that Terry. But would you agree it was a mistake by the regulator to licence so many small stations within Kent?
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Old 09-05-2013, 12:13
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Ok, I stand corrected on that Terry. But would you agree it was a mistake by the regulator to licence so many small stations within Kent?
There are around 1.5 million people in Kent. How many licences would you suggest that can sustain?
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Old 09-05-2013, 12:20
Mapperley Ridge
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There are around 1.5 million people in Kent. How many licences would you suggest that can sustain?
Two on FM, one on AM.
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Old 09-05-2013, 12:54
Terry Purvis
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But would you agree it was a mistake by the regulator to licence so many small stations within Kent?
Oh yes, I completely agree, it was a huge mistake. The original TSA's were far too small to produce sustainable revenue in the short, medium and long term.

The Kent Messenger Group was always unhappy with having Invicta around, right from the beginning, and I've always thought their acquisitions of the small licences stemmed from that unhappiness rather than good business sense.

Whatever the reason, the reality is a virtual disaster. Personally, I think that KMFM doesn't know what it is, who it's targeting and how to reach them effectively.

My recipe for them would be to offer a service that's clearly distinctive from Heart and realise that local advertisers aren't wholly focused on the thirty-something females.
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Old 09-05-2013, 16:33
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Is it a given that they're going to bomb with next weeks figures then?
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Old 09-05-2013, 18:30
Terry Purvis
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Is it a given that they're going to bomb with next weeks figures then?
Their market share has been ebbing away for years now and the station still sounds like they're following the Dan O'Day guide to radio, so I wouldn't hold my breath.
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Old 16-05-2013, 09:40
David_Ayling
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have you seen the rajar numbers for the station yet. so here they are.
the Weekly Reach for kmfm for Maidstone as gone up from 148 to 163

the Weekly Reach for East Kent as gone up from 80 to 91
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Old 16-05-2013, 11:05
Terry Purvis
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have you seen the rajar numbers for the station yet. so here they are.
the Weekly Reach for kmfm for Maidstone as gone up from 148 to 163

the Weekly Reach for East Kent as gone up from 80 to 91
Reach alone does not provide a true indicator of how well a station is doing. It's the combination of reach and hours resulting in their share of the market which is the real picture.

Total hours listened have fallen over the last 12 months from 1,363 million to 1,212 million and from 1,243 million in Q4 2012 to 1,212 million for Q1 2013

Despite gaining a few more listeners the audience is listening for less time. Their corresponding market share has fallen in the last 12 months from 5.3% to 4.8% and from 5.0% in Q4 2012 to 4.8% for Q1 2013.

Nothing for them to shout about, quite the reverse.
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