Over 50 radio, podcasting, cricket, AFL and racing stations
One of the CEOs of SEN that of Craig Hutchison the most daring moves were to pay around $ 10 million for the license of 2CH in Sydney – 1170 on the AM band.
The new owners weren’t going to keep the Classic Hits format, they moved the music to a DAB + channel of the same name and used the AM frequency to launch SEN 1170 Sydney.
Using the traditional method of measuring radio success, you should call it an underachiever. Ratings for the last two polls of 2CH as a music brand saw resort and breakfast shares above 4%. In SEN’s first year, the resort peaked at 0.7% and breakfast at 0.5%.
But the notes only convey part of SEN’s story. “Because we distribute our content in so many ways, it may take a little while for some people to get used to our model.“said Hutchison.
For people who get it, he added, “It’s been very effective and very successful with advertisers, which is one of the reasons we’ve had such good customer retention.”
As noted in our accompanying SEN 2021 review, bringing content across multiple platforms to sports fans is the game. Part of the distribution method is podcasting.
See also: Craig Hutchison – Covid a speed bump for SEN, but it didn’t stop 2021’s growth
âWe have a total audience of 5.5 million people and 450,000 unique people in a peak month,â Hutchison explained. âWe will continue to grow. Podcasting fits into our full experience model. We are really interested in your attention with our products. We want to improve a sports fan’s day.
The most watched podcast is SEN Breakfast, which brings together corporate breakfast shows in Australia. The podcast was ranked # 29 in the Podcast Ranker for November. The morning show SEN 1116 hosted by Gerard Whately was also in the Ranker Top 40. The second best, at No. 51, was Hutchison’s podcast. The resonance chamber he co-hosts with AFL’s Damian and Triple M Barrett.
Hutchison wants to take calculated risks and do things differently, but he also respects tradition. Speaking of the Sydney market, he notes the next 2CH milestone with its 90th birthday in 2022.
The former AM station, now living as a DAB + station and online, celebrates its 90th anniversary in 2022. Breakfast host and radio veteran Tim webster will be 70 in 2022. âPeople love this brand,â Hutchison said. “Although we turned the frequency into a sports station, we didn’t want to turn our backs on history. Although our model is less traditional than most.
Rainmaker, Ballpark and AFL Record
The former AFL executive keeps an eye on these various parts of the SEN group. Richard simkiss. Hutchison notes that Rainmaker, with his cutting edge studio that offers production, filming, editing, talent sourcing, and delivery, is one of the most exciting and rapidly growing parts of the empire.
âRainmaker did a great job led by Richard. It has invested in technology, distribution and infrastructure. We have great sporting connections and the TV studios in our building broadcast content 24 hours a day. â
Rainmaker has made agreements with the AFLW and WNBL, among others, to distribute the content of the codes.
On the other hand, Ballpark and AFL Publishing have been pushed around by Covid. The absence of sporting crowds and travel restrictions have anchored much of Ballpark’s event activity.
Barely 12 months after SEN struck a deal to publish AFL Record magazine, Covid struck, meaning there was no football field selling the title to fans.
âThe AFL Record team has done a great job considering the challenges they have faced over the past two years. We can’t wait to be back in some very busy places. Our team managed to evolve a product that is 110 years old in April of next year.“
Taking care of the publication is only part of a larger AFL relationship.
Hutchison: âAFL Radio has been great for us and for the AFL as we help build the game in NSW and Queensland. Something SEN has done with syndication deals and now also through its own stations.
âWe broadcast the Suns, Swans and Giants live every game. They can be heard on up to three stations in Sydney on 2UE, 2SM and 1170. In Brisbane, matches can be heard on 4BH and various stations in the NSW area.
âIn some markets we do AFL and NRL every weekend which is a great honor.â
Well done the management
The talent management company is led by longtime colleague Craig Hutchison Chris Giannopoulos who also sits on the board of directors of SEN.
Bravo merged with Precision Sports Management in 2019. CEO of Precision Liam pickering and Giannopoulos are longtime partners, having first worked together at IMG where Giannopoulos was Director of Client Management and New Business Development for over 14 years. Pickering joined Giannopoulos in 2001 to lead IMG’s AFL player management before founding Precision in 2014.
SENtrack: pursuit, stimulation and running
He explained that the racing industries have been very supportive. ” They realize we have identified a new fan style in addition to creating new fans. We celebrated how wonderful these industries are in terms of the volume of events they host in their communities across the country. On an average race day there can be 30 or more events in Australia and New Zealand. This represents a lot of employed people and an economic stimulus in these cities and communities.
“We don’t have a model for the serious professional bettor. We’re more for people who might come to the pub on a Saturday with their friends for a laugh and a quaddie.“
SENtrack handles all of this without involving any thoroughbred racing. There is still a lot of talk about horse racing.
Hutchison explained, âOur audience doesn’t miss it live. We take audio from harness racing and greyhounds. If you want to follow thoroughbred races there are plenty of places to watch them from Sky Chanel, Seven on Saturdays, Racing.com and various betting apps. For audio only, you are supported by Sky Sport Radio or RSN. If you really want to have a day with your friends, we are the place.“
Hutchy said SENtrack identified the gap in the market. âThe gap is providing the advice, the jokes, the key people and their performance. To have credibility in the industry, but also for a laugh along the way. We are building a community, a very interactive brand with the public.
âThe others in space don’t have the luxury of what we can do. They have to go race after race. They can’t spend 20 minutes talking about a particular meeting, we can if we want to. This is the difference.
These racing codes on which SENtrack relies are the ones that other media overlooks. âWe strongly believe in choice. In our model, and our app is designed to accommodate that, you should be able to find whatever you’re looking for. This could be our SENW podcast channel for women’s sports, all the way to harness racing in Western Australia.
Cricket on SEN
This summer, so far, SEN has covered the WBBL and has exclusive radio coverage of the BBL. It also has the Ashes Tests – exclusive commercial AM broadcaster – as well as Triple M and ABC.
âWe have established commentators like Gerard Whately and Anthony hudson. We have hired a lot of cricketers like Ian Healy in Brisbane, Adam gilchrist in Perth. It’s a great radio sport and a great storytelling platform. It’s even more popular in New Zealand where it’s huge. We follow the Black Caps wherever they are in the world.
“We are very invested in cricket as a business.“
SEN in figures
The Sports Entertainment Network has become a media beast that has devoured radio licenses in two counties. Over 50 in fact – here’s the breakdown.
28 radio stations in New Zealand
24 radio stations in Australia (and still growing – 15 are SENtrack stations)
SEN broadcasts nine separate breakfast shows – Garry and Tim in Melbourne, Kane and Hayesy in Adelaide, Adam Gilchrist with Tim Gossage (Gilly and Goss) in Perth, Jack riewoldt in Tasmania, AndrÃ© Voss In Sydney, Tim webster in Sydney (at Classic Hits), Pat Welsh and Ian Healy (Pat and Heals) in Queensland and Brendon McCullum and Israel Dagg (Bazz and Izzy) in New Zealand.
Top photo: SEN 1170 breakfast host Vossy helps build the brand in Sydney