Not every marketer gets paid to hang out with Robbie Williams at
Glastonbury, but Gail Nuttney, Radio 1’s marketing manager, does reckon
she has ’the best job in the world’.
Being responsible for Radio 1’s advertising is a job many would find
daunting, given the pressure is on the station to boost its audiences
after losing millions of listeners since Matthew Bannister sacked
several old-guard DJs.
But Nuttney is undaunted. The recent review of Radio 1’s creative
account out of St Luke’s, which saw Fallon McElligot win its third piece
of business since launching in the UK, shows that the station has
recognised the need to make a loud statement about the positive changes
it has made.
A former agency account person, Nuttney has plenty of experience in the
youth field, having worked on Umbro at DMB&B and the Ministry of Sound
at BMP DDB - where she met the creative directors of Fallons, Richard
Flintham and Andy McLeod.
While working on the award-winning Ministry account at BMP, Nuttney
became involved in Labour’s election campaign. This changed the shape of
her career. As she says: ’When all the excitement of the election was
over, going back to advertising biscuits felt a bit flat.’ So she made
an opportunist call to Sue Farr, then controller of marketing and
communication for BBC Broadcasting, and landed her current job.
The rigorous repositioning of the station in 1993 drove listeners away,
and Nuttney admits: ’People went from thinking that we weren’t cool
enough for them to thinking that we were too cool for them.’
But recent Rajar figures showed Radio 1’s listenership rising again.
Nuttney says: ’We are scheduling for people’s lifestyles rather than
just throwing shows at them.’
So now seems as good a time as any for a new advertising campaign. ’Our
previous advertising was very understated - we just opened the door and
said ’we’re not saying anything, just look at us’. This time, we need to
shout ’hey - we’re good’.’