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Hot FM offers listeners more with launch of visual radio

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Chris Anyanwu and Ndu Scott

As technology continues to drive innovation, the broadcast media, especially radio, is also devising ways to make radio experience worthwhile for listeners.

Nigerian radio stations have therefore been advised on the need to step up their game or face extinction. Hot FM is one distinctive radio station known for creativity and style, no wonder the station, within 13 years, has made incredible progress.

Founder of the station and former lawmaker representing Imo East Senatorial District, Chris Anyanwu, in the company of the General Manager, Mr. Ndu Scott, recently paid a courtesy visit to Rutam House, The Guardian headquarters.

She said Hot FM is not traditional radio content but a multimedia platform that is pioneering visual radio content, the first of its kind in the country for the listening and viewing pleasure of its listeners.

Anyanwu stated that radio plays a critical part in the development of Nigeria, and that Hot FM would leave nothing to chance but contribute positively to the course.

While speaking further on the new station set for launch in Lagos on Friday, April 13, Scott said Lagos being a large cosmopolitan city with about 15 million people living and working in it, with almost seven million radio listeners, accords them the opportunity to explore the visual aspect of radio.

According to him, “Our niche target in Lagos is innovative, tech savvy, intellectual and creative young adults, young people with an appetite for content. We have created a radio that’s tailor-made for this group. We are giving them more than just traditional radio.”

Having launched in Abuja, then Owerri, Asaba and now coming to Lagos, the GM said he is proud of the achievements, not forgetting the many lessons learnt along the way, saying, “primary lesson for us is that radio is no longer a casual enterprise.

You must be committed to making it the best that it can be.

This requires you to be very scientific, patient, stay nimble and stay faithful to your defined mission because you cannot be everything to everyone.”

Against the belief that trends in Nigeria move from the urban capitals to the hinterland, Scott said Hot FM is having it the other way, explaining, “We have been in markets that get as low as five per cent of the adverts spend from big advertisers and we have found a way to tackle these markets and succeed for the most part.

We are now in a market that has 55 per cent of the Nigerian advert spend.

For us, it is like moving from a small stream to a big river. We expect to succeed because we are bringing in new tools, attitudes and technology into the market.

“We are approaching radio not in the traditional sense but as a multimedia platform. This is why our slogan is ‘More Than Just Radio.’ Our new type of radio called Visual Radio will be the first aspect of our roll out.

The others will be mainly intellectual and content related. Our approach and attitude will also be different. We don’t want to be like everyone else.

“Our music is very different. We want to give our listeners a different sound. For example, we want to be known for our EDM (Electronic Dance Music).

In short, we really don’t mind if people call us an EDM station. However, we will play Nigerian and contemporary hit music as well.”

The new station targets millennials mainly from ages 24 to 35, young entrepreneurs, creative folks, recent graduates and young professionals.

Scott said the Visual Radio medium allows one to watch what is heard on radio in real time.

Visual Radio, he said, is basically TV masking as radio.

On the commercial angle, that may mean advertisers creating their messaging to suit the platform: “We will inform all our clients of the options we offer in this two-prong approach.

They can give us their video adverts and their audio adverts to air at bargain prices. For advertisers this is a good deal because we are giving them the video and audio platforms all in one.

This is obviously more value for their money.”

On staffing Scott said, “We have found talents that are up to the challenge. Watch out for them on Hot 93.3 FM.”


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