Feature

Campaign Media Awards 2007: Radio Sales Team of the Year - Emap Advertising

Emap Advertising's success in securing the Radio Sales Team of the Year gong at this year's Campaign Media Awards is unlikely to be contentious, even among its rivals.

The team is behind an innovation that is being watched closely, and begrudgingly admired, by commercial radio stations across the land - the relaunch of Heat Radio as a station whose revenue relies solely on advertiser-funded content.

This relaunch has allowed advertisers to buy into a very successful multi-platform brand. Removing the restrictions of the 30-second spot radio ad, they are given a blank canvas to develop content that will appeal to consumers and get brand messages across.

And brands have not been slow to embrace the opportunity, with those signing up in the first instance including Diet Coke, Ford and Boots' cosmetics brand 17.

Over at other Emap radio stations, the Emap Advertising sales team was busy coming up with concepts for advertiser-funded programming.

Kiss signed a deal with Nike in a campaign that celebrated key moments in the history of the trainer brand, through an advertiser-funded programme called The Kisstory of Air.

Sony Ericsson also made the most of Emap's audience of young urbanites, with a new networked show across Emap's Big City stations, working alongside a schedule of exclusive concerts.

This doesn't mean that Emap has abandoned the spot ad. Far from it - the company has invested a six-figure budget in mocking up sample ads in a bid to win new advertisers over to the medium.

As part of promoting the medium to advertisers, Emap has also been instrumental in setting up a collaboration with other radio groups. This has seen rivals such as Galaxy and Kiss partner up to invigorate youth radio - a proposition that has been taken up by the likes of Halifax, CKOne and Lynx.

Even more wide-ranging was the Vodafone Big Idea, which ran across 60 stations from the likes of GCap, Global Radio, UTV and, of course, Emap.

Other collaborative initiatives are calculated to have generated more than £3 million in revenues for the commercial radio industry.

The investment in radio has seen a rise in creative revenue of 28 per cent at Emap, with one media planner describing the team has having "the brands, the insight, the creativity and the right team in place to make campaigns live on air".

FINALIST

- GCap Media.