For the past few months I have been studying two different radio stations, one local and one nationwide, paying particular attention to the breakfast shows. Radio 1 is a nationwide, public broadcasting service, owned by the BBC and funded by TV licensing fees. Radio 1’s target audience is fifteen to twenty five. Spire FM is a local broadcasting service which broadcasts from south Wiltshire and west Hampshire and is owned by Radio investments LTD and gets its funds through advertising. The Radio 1 breakfast show begins at 7 ‘o’ clock am and finishes at 10 ‘o’ clock am, it is hosted by Sara Cox. The Spire FM breakfast show, hosted by Matt and H, starts at quarter past 6 and finishes at 9 ‘o’ clock.
The radio day doesn’t differ between the two stations, both have a breakfast show, a daytime show, a drive-time show and evening/over night shows. However these shows may be under different names and be on at different times.
The breakfast show is noticeable through its conventions. These conventions include:
* The music
* Sweepers (advertise the radio station)
* Trails (advertise other shows on the station)
* News reports from the previous day or news on what happened in the night.
* Weather reports for the whole day
* Travel News
Spire FM has a larger target audience that they have to aim to appeal to; because of this they have to use the conventions differently. For example, Spire FM’s playlist includes wider varieties of music such as different genres and music from different times. Radio 1 tries to play the latest, chart topping music in its breakfast show. The news broadcasts that are aired differ between the two stations as well. This is because Radio 1 is a national radio station and has to air news that is important to the whole country. Spire FM, being a local broadcast airs local news as well as national news. The presenters also have different presentational techniques.
Sara Cox presents in a laddish, matey way, this seems friendly and appealing to 15 – 25 year olds (the target audience). Spire FM present in a humorous but sometimes ‘cheesy’ manner, this appeals to the 15+ audience. Also the quizzes and prizes are different to suit the listeners and budget of the company. Radio 1 offers big, money can’t buy prizes, such as meet Eminem. They give these prizes away in humorously named, phone ins. The questions they ask in these games are easy general knowledge that the target audience would know.