Saturday, 18 October 2008

UKTV rebrandarama

I am a simple man, and frequently in marketing it pays to be simple. It means the more complicated things go sailing happily by whilst I can still enjoy the less highbrow side of life. Recently though I’ve been getting a bit confused. You see, UKTV are at it again, rebranding channels left right and centre, in line with their – ‘give it a new name and a sense of direction’ strategy which worked so well for Dave.
Where are we so far... Dave a channel for blokes like me (pretty good but wearing a little thin on material now).
Watch... some things that are great to Watch apparently. Hmmmm ok. It’s snappy and does what it says on the tin.
Eden... some inspirational programmes about Earth.
I like this. It’s all good concise stuff and UKTV surely needs to do something before we all switch over to digital and switch off to the networks message. My interest in all this is to do with babies and bathwater... which is to say; surely the network added something to consumer understanding.
I mean fine we’ll still have on air navigation which should help a bit, but as a consumer getting messages for Eden on Dave or Watch on Dave or Eden or whatever, doesn’t I think present a coherent family of channels.
I think that in a digital age it is of vital importance that a network exhibits strong network behaviour, and that this behaviour is reflective of what the group of channels stands for. It allows for a much bigger conversation.
The real problem for UKTV wasn’t a lack of direction for their channels; it was that their network had no sense of purpose. Rebranding the stations is a neat trick, and will work in the short term (at least until fresh, desirable programming dries up), But to my mind it is a job half done.
Oh and I still can’t hear watch without seeing lumps of plastacine whirling around to flute music.

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