Digital One and the BBC have announced plans to work together to
promote digital radio.
They will start by marketing the medium at major exhibitions, beginning
with the Motor Show at Birmingham NEC this November. They will also work
together to devise a digital radio audience measurement system, expected
to come from Rajar.
The BBC and Digital One are researching receiver predictability to find
the correct measuring mechanism for the new medium.
The digital radio market is split equally between the BBC and Digital
One’s ten national multiplex channels, but a collaboration between the
BBC and the commercial sector is completely logical, according to both
’We don’t want to send out confused messages to the consumer and we need
to build a base of digital radio audiences before we can even think
about being competitive,’ commented Quentin Howard, chief executive of
’It’s similar to the battle between ONdigital and Sky - you’re fishing
for the same audience but wasting huge resources just trying to hook
customers. What’s exciting to us is that commercial radio can operate
for the first time on the same national playing field as the BBC,’
Glyn Jones, project director at BBC digital radio, said: ’Digital One
and the BBC recognise that this is a time for co-operation to help
deliver the substantial benefits of digital radio to the UK consumer.
Working together on a range of marketing initiatives will help each of
us attract more attention and have a greater impact.’
However, Howard added that government regulations will restrict the
growth of radio if the points allocated to each station are not
’ I don’t understand why radio is restricted to 15 per cent of radio
points, while TV gets away with 25 per cent,’ he said. ’This is so
limiting in terms of expanding the industry, and a reason why
partnerships and mergers will change the radio map.’