Footy on Nine Audio 2024

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ALL CODES COVERED ON NINE AUDIO

Footy cuts deep into our culture and community. It’s powerful because it’s real, unscripted, and the stories live on long after the stadium lights go down.​

In 2024, Nine Audio is your one-stop shop for official NRL and AFL coverage, with access to the best live games as well as pre and post-game commentary from some of the country’s leading broadcasters. 

To find out what your brand can achieve with a premium footy on Nine Audio partnership, request a tailored response to help realise your marketing objectives today.

NRL ON NINE AUDIO
JOIN THE CONVERSATION

​For decades, Nine Audio has brought the sport that we can't get enough of, rugby league, to the homes and hearts of listeners all around the country.

NRL offers 32 weeks of continuous conversation, spread across multiple competitions, providing opportunities to tell your brand story in and around key calendar moments – this year like never before.

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LET’S TALK NINE AUDIO’S NRL SUPER HOSTS 
THE CONTINUOUS CALL TEAM

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PREMIUM GAMES AND MORE PASSIONATE FANS

Only Nine Radio has exclusive radio rights to the best premium games each weekend on 2GB and 4BC: Friday 8.00pm, Saturday 5.30pm and 7.30pm, and Sunday afternoons at 4.00pm. Giving brands the ability to integrate into live sport across multiple weekly touch points.

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BETTER CONTENT AND A BRAND SAFE ENVIRONMENT

In 2024, the Continuous Call Team will celebrate its 38th consecutive year broadcasting the National Rugby League. It is the longest continuously-running sports program in the history of Australian commercial radio. With that comes experience like no other attracting the best guests from across the NRL to join in the conversation, week in, week out.

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UNRIVALLED BETTER ENGAGEMENT

Nine Radio’s NRL programming has the highest level of engagement with over 2 hours each week when compared to other radio stations. Deeper engagement means we can deliver cut through for brands, driving awareness and sales.

Source: GfK Radio360 Ratings, Sydney + Brisbane Survey 5 2023, Cume (000s), Fri 1900-2300, Sat 1300-2200, Sun 1300-1900, TSL (HH:MM), 2GB or 4BC, AP10+.  

NINE'S NRL FANS CAN'T GET ENOUGH OF THE CONTINUOUS CALL TEAM

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OF NRL AUDIO CONTENT

We are a direct line to the nation’s footy fans, serving up the biggest and best rugby league Australia has to offer, with world-class analysis of all the action on and off the field.

Source: approx. 25 hours of live NRL radio content each week on 2GB

TALKING FOOTY AT SCALE
WHEREVER AND HOWEVER PEOPLE ARE LISTENING

Continuous Call Team in Sydney and Brisbane

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Footy listeners each week

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NRL Podcast Downloads^

Source: Radio360 Ratings Sydney Survey 5 2023, Fri 7pm-11pm, Sat 1-11pm, Sun 1-7pm, Market Share (NRL Broadcasters Only), 2GB AP10+. ^Triton Australian Podcast Ranker August 2023, CCT, Six Tackles with Gus, 2GB Wide World of Sport, 100% Footy, Top Blokes, Stories of Origin.

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THE NRLW IS SET FOR AN EVEN ​
BIGGER AND BETTER YEAR IN 2024

The women of the NRLW are rewriting the history books, shattering barriers, and redefining what it means to be an athlete. ​

In 2023, Nine’s Wide World of Sports made a landmark investment in the growth of women’s league. With increased coverage across the season with full calls of State of Origin Games 1 and 2, and the NRLW Grand Final by our No.1 NRL call team. Plus, a dedicated weekly women in league segment on the Continuous Call Team and Wide World of Sports, and a weekly podcast dedicated to NRLW.

A season sponsorship of the NRLW helps position a brand as a leader and supporter of the sport, enhancing the brand’s reputation and credibility, especially among fans.

AFL ON NINE AUDIO 
JOIN THE CONVERSATION

When it comes to the AFL, Nine’s two football stations, 3AW and 6PR, are second to none. With longer pre-game and post-game analysis than anyone else, our coverage is unmatched.

In 2023, we extended our decades-long partnership with the AFL. Not only did our listeners have access to 3AW and 6PR's unrivalled commentary and coverage through their local station, the new agreement incorporated full streaming rights across Australia, giving fans the ability to listen anywhere, anytime, on any device. 

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LET’S TALK NINE AUDIO’S AFL SUPER HOSTS
THE 3AW AND 6PR FOOTBALL CALL TEAMS

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PREMIUM GAMES AND MORE PASSIONATE FANS

3AW and 6PR will call premium games across Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, bringing fans over 100 AFL games across the season. Giving brands the ability to integrate into live sport across multiple weekly touch points.

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BETTER CONTENT AND A BRAND SAFE ENVIRONMENT

3AW will continue the tradition of over 80 years of broadcasting Aussie Rules, the longest continuously-running sports coverage in Australian commercial radio. Our super hosts create a brand safe AFL environment you can’t find anywhere else.

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UNRIVALLED BETTER ENGAGEMENT

Nine Radio’s AFL programming has the highest level of streaming engagement. Deeper engagement means we can deliver cut through for brands, driving awareness and sales.

TALKING FOOTY AT SCALE
WHEREVER AND HOWEVER PEOPLE ARE LISTENING

3AW Melbourne

+

Footy listeners each week - 3AW and 6PR

+

AFL Podcast Downloads in August^

Source: GfK Radio360 Ratings, Melbourne Survey 5 2023, Market Share %, AFL Broadcasters Only, Fri 6pm-12MN, Sat 12-12MN, Sun 12-7pm, Cume (000s) Incl 6PR Sat 11.30am-8pm, Sun 12-6pm, AP10+, unless otherwise specified. ^ Triton Australian Podcast Ranker August 2023, 3AW is Footy, Real Footy, Footy Classified, Footy Nightline, 3AW & 6PR Wide World of Sport, Eddie & Jimmy

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AFLW ON NINE AUDIO
A SPORTING REVOLUTION YOU'LL WANT TO HEAR

Brace yourself for fierce athleticism, unmatched skill and a level of passion that will leave you breathless. The women of AFLW are rewriting the history books, from bone-crunching tackles to spectacular goals, every match is a testament to their dedication and resilience.

Don't miss a moment of this electrifying competition on Nine Audio, as heroes rise, rivalries ignite and legends are born. AFLW is where the spirit of the game meets the power of women, and it's a sporting revolution you won't want to miss!

DIGITAL STREAMING OF PREMIUM SPORTING CONTENT IS ON THE RISE

CONTEXTUAL RELEVANCE MAKES YOUR MESSAGE WORK HARDER

With contextual streaming opportunities available through our Sports Fans Package, your brand can reach footy fans nationally across the NRL on 2GB and 4BC plus AFL on 3AW and 6PR. In fact, studies have also shown how ad-context alignment drives business outcomes:​

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Enhanced engagement with contextual advertising

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Average increase in purchase intent due to contextual alignment

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Increase in unaided awareness

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Lift in sales

Source: Radiocentre’s ‘Emotional Multiplier’ study & ARF’s contextual alignment study 2020.

THE HOME OF SPORTS PODCASTING

Nine's top sports journalists, experts and commentators keep sports fanatics informed and engaged across Australia all year round. On average, attracting 730,000 podcast downloads each month during football across sport categories.

Extend your brand conversation across the week with catch up and original podcasts. Giving fans the chance to tap into their passion and interest on demand and on-the-go, with trusted opinion and engaging stories reaching a new generation of listeners.

Source: Triton Podcast Metrics, April-August 2023 Average, Total Nine, Downloads, Category = Sport.

ORIGINAL NINE FOOTY PODCASTS

IF IT MATTERS TO FANS, FOOTY ON NINE AUDIO WILL DELIVER

Sports marketing is a powerful tool that numerous brands have leveraged to deliver real success. Best of all, it’s a genre that works across virtually every industry. Why does it have such power? Because it has the winning ability to connect brands with fans.​​

Nine’s leading audio platforms offer just that. Connecting with footy fans who are passionate, highly engaged, have money to spend, and immerse themselves in premium footy content week after week across all codes.

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9Powered_Logo_White

The reigning premiers
of creativity and results

Big ideas make brands famous.
As does the power of premium sporting content.

And with the help of Powered by Nine, we have a big idea for every budget, underpinned by Australia’s best footy content spanning television, digital, print and radio. From the main game to the experts and the entertainers, we provide brands with an unrivalled platform to tell their story.

01
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03
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Macca's season-long strategic campaign brought to life across Nine Radio

Challenge: To entrench Macca’s into the NRL audiences’ game-day ritual and become the favourite and most trusted QSR brand.

Solution: Macca’s combined a season-long naming rights partnership with clever creative executions and messaging across the Continuous Call Team’s weekend coverage, plus extensions into the Wide World of Sports program.

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A 'Who will deliver' segment analysing the player who the talent think will "deliver" for their team in the game.

A clever use of creative, leading listeners to believe they were hearing show talent enjoying their Macca’s delivery behind the scenes, with the mic accidentally left on.

Visual branding on studio TVs combined with on-air messaging gave Macca’s interactive ownership.

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Honda MPE's spring campaign brought to life through a finals partnership with 3AW footy

Challenge: Increase consideration and position the Honda MPE top of mind by re-establishing Honda Power Equipment as a premium brand.

Solution: By leveraging a 3AW footy finals partnership, Honda MPE unlocked the premium nature of Nine’s audio broadcasting. The conversation was extended with a focus on durability and reliability of their premium products through creative segments placing Honda MPE at the forefront in this space.

Holden

Each week the commentary team in partnership with Honda nominated the most durable and reliable player of the day. Reflecting on the player who was a mainstay for the team and tapping into Honda’s brand traits of durability and reliability, it drove the brand story home with listeners.

To find out more about what your brand can achieve through a premium footy partnership with Nine Audio, request a tailored response to help realise your marketing objectives today.

Request more information - GENERIC

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Powered Unpacked: Over 50s have all the money – but advertisers and algorithms are getting them all wrong

The Rise of the Super Consumer

Over 50s have all the money – but advertisers and algorithms are getting them all wrong: Russel Howcroft, Chris Colter, Mitesh Khatri and Lisa Day on how to fix it

There’s a stream of research that shows Australians over 50 are spending big despite interest rate hikes, while younger people are tightening their belts. But marketers, agencies, media and targeting algorithms are largely getting the over 50s all wrong – and missing immediate growth opportunities. Time for a rethink, say Nine, Initiative and GfK. 

Marketers are increasingly focused on reaching influencers. The problem is, many are targeting the wrong ones. An increasing body of evidence underlines the fact that Australians aged 55-plus now hold the greatest influence – and buying power –with discretionary spending outstripping inflation.

For younger people, the reverse is true. Research by Nine and GfK finds that the spending divide between younger and older Australians is widening as the highest interest rates in 30 years bite hard.

Other researchers are drawing the same conclusions. Latest Commbank analysis of seven million customer accounts across 360 spending categories finds exactly the same thing. 

That shift has significant implications for brands and their marketing strategies – as unpacked at this month’s Big Ideas Store by 3AW Breakfast host and advertising guru Russel Howcroft, Initiative’s Chris Colter, GfK’s Mitesh Khatri, Powered by Nine’s Lisa Day and Nine’s Ash Earnshaw.  

About to get richer

A large number of Australians in their mid-50s to 60 already have significant discretionary spend. Their kids have left home, and per Russel Howcroft, they will soon command even greater financial firepower, given their early boomer” parents are “entering their twilight years”. Kids gone and incoming inheritance “puts them in the sweetest of consumer spots”, says Howcroft. And that’s before downsizing homes is factored in. Plus, after decades spending the bulk of their incomes raising a family, many are now spending it on themselves.  

“People used to say life begins at 40,” said Howcroft. “Life is now beginning at 55.”  

Powered by Nine’s Lisa Day underlined that point.

“It’s a sobering fact, but 80 per cent of Australian wealth is held by 41 per cent of the population who are 45 years-plus,” said Day. Marketers not fully focused on those who are middle-aged and upwards are therefore targeting just one-fifth of the total addressable market in financial terms. 

Commbank’s findings that people aged over 50 are outspending inflation is unsurprising, since half of that cohort “have paid off their mortgage, and a quarter of them have an investment property”, added Day. “So, they have more assets than liabilities. They’ve got bigger savings. They can weather this [inflationary pressure]. They’re out spending because they have a buffer – which younger audiences simply don’t have.”  

Most powerful influencers

The Nine and GfK research makes a case for Australia’s middle-aged cohort to actually be more powerful influencers than some of the younger social media influencers paid by brands to push products. It found strong brand loyalty amongst 45-64-year-olds – which has network effects, with two in five stating that they are involved in the purchase of products for family and friends, and a third stating that they actively talk about experiences they’ve had with brands.   

 

Rethinking 'lazy' planning, ads

The research also found people on average see themselves as seven years younger than they actually are. Plus, most are tech savvy, have broad media consumption and do a tonne of research before making a purchase of any significance. Which means that just sticking an old person in an ad is a bit of a miss, per Initiative’s Chris Colter.  

“Marketers with a myopic view tend to just go, ‘Oh well, I need to show someone with white hair if I’m targeting that audience’, and I think that that’s a mistake,” Colter said.  

He thinks planning as a whole should take into account that age can be largely immaterial to interests and cautioned against targeting too narrowly on that basis. Plus, he warned that algorithmic targeting can be just as guilty of unconscious bias.  

Colter cited Initiative research for a finance brand as an example.  

“We do a lot of digital twinning as one of our research methodologies – basically a fancy way of saying that we create fake social profiles and watch what the algorithm serves them.”  

In one instance, Initiative created two profiles with 'attitudinally identical' characteristics, but set one profile’s age as 24 and one at 57.   

“We just changed the age. But one was served almost exclusively with retirement ads, funeral insurance and anti-wrinkle cream. The other was served travel ads,” said Colter. “So I think we need to do better as an industry at tackling some of the algorithmic bias before we lean into some of that targeting. And also in thinking how we approach these audiences in more mass broadcast environments so that we’re resetting that norm as well.”  

Howcroft agreed: “We need to be sophisticated in how we go about execution to this really wealthy cohort.” He thinks the media industry might need to rethink how it packages audience demographics.  

“I’ve often thought that demography [based on] age brackets is a bit of a nonsense in a way. Rather than cutting people vertically, if we just go by – let’s call it values and attitudes – you’re going to find a lot of commonality no matter what the age.”  

Should that shift occur, some planners would welcome it. “I genuinely think we should be progressing marketers towards psychographics over demographics,” Initiative’s Colter says. Either way, “I think making sure you’re matching psychographics with demographics is super important.”  

Target today's buyers over tomorrow's

Nailing planning and creative to more effectively target older audiences will drive immediate growth, said GFK’s Mitesh Khatri, which marketers are under acute pressure to deliver.  

“We see a lot of brands targeting the recruitment [of new customers] for tomorrow and the focus on younger age groups. That’s never going to go away, but I think the research clearly shows where the dollars are right now” Mitesh says.   

 “Where’s the spending happening and are we overlooking this audience? I think it gets overlooked too much because too many brands come to us saying, ‘We want to target the next recruitment into our brand,’ and a lot of those brand targets are sitting at that 25-to-40 age group or younger” he added.  

He thinks there is an opportunity to change “marketing’s view, society’s view, perhaps government’s view of how we look and treat this audience”.   

“There’s a huge opportunity to step outside the box, look at the attitudes, look at how they think about life, their values. They want to enjoy it and connect on a deeper, more meaningful level beyond age.”  

In the meantime, Powered’s Lisa Day has a simple tip for advertisers rethinking their approaches to over-50s.   

“People think and feel younger than they actually are. If you're an advertiser, don't be conservative in your tone or use of images. Pitch younger, more youthful and you'll be surprised how well you'll do" said Day. 

Contact us for more information on how your brand can leverage the power of Nine to deliver real business outcomes.

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The Value Equation

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01_Chapter_1
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Value

Value is an elusive concept, that changes from one situation to the next. But the first thing to note is that value is most certainly in the eye of the beholder. In the context of consumer culture, value is the perception of what a product or service is worth to a customer versus the possible alternatives. Worth means whether the customer feels they received benefits and services over what they paid.

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Value is inherent throughout our lives,

even when it isn't about money

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Doing someone a favour
"I owe you one"

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Giving gifts
Relationships, bonding

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In kind
Swaps, passing things on through online marketplaces

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Memories
From a dinner or holiday

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The story

We set out to understand what value means in today's world, by focusing on five core categories which are representative of, and indicative of the broader Australian consumer market.

Giving structure to value across five categories

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Groceries

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Instore Retail

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Booking Travel

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Financial Services

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Tech & Appliances

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How value manifests by category today

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01_Chapter_3
Group 1
Adding

Australian's have gone from a pandemic mindset straight into a cost-of-living mindset. But disruptions such as bank crashes and data leaks have birthed greater appetite for security and privacy.

It's clear that no matter the category, value needs to deliver more than just lower prices

The instability of the economic, and geo-political climate has made consumers prioritise traditionally functional values such as reduced cost, quality, accessibility, and safety & reliability today.

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Value drivers that will become more important in 2030

The pursuit of sustainability & the end of abundance living

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Navigating an increasingly complex world

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To unlock the full potential of value is an exercise that isn't necessarily that straight forward … but when you get it right, you will reap the rewards.

The beauty of value comes with its complexity - value changes by mood, category, time of life, and it's extremely contextual, but also changes by point in time.

Value is relentlessly evolving. We shouldn’t be approaching value with a fixed point of view. The world around us isn’t fixed, therefore our approach to value shouldn’t be.

It is a delicate balance that requires rigor and science to optimize to its most full potential.

Often we throw around value as quite a flippant term, but the gravity it holds is game-changing and we want to help you unlock its full potential.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: Nine’s Proprietary Research -The Value Equation

For further information on the research, contact your Nine representative or complete the form. A member of the team will be in touch.

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I Am What I Am

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Identity_Chapter01_2
IdentityIsCoreToBeingHuman

We live in an increasingly complicated world, where there are many ways of ‘being human’. At the same time, all people share some experiences in common: all learn, exchange and communicate beliefs, create and maintain social relationships, and adapt to different environments and situations.

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Identity is made up of a broad variety of aspects, and not all of them are perceived to be in our control

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When it comes to living our identity, some aspects are more important than others

'Personal values' is the core of our identity, our guiding star. And it helps define who we are and how everything else is perceived, shaped and prioritised.

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TheSpheresOfInfluence

To understand what it means to be human, we look at the importance of connection and the influences it has in shaping our identities.

Spheres

The closest, most intimate inner spheres have highest levels of influence, both positive and negative

“When I travel to Asia to see my family, I tend to play down the Western values and adjust myself to please and not offend.”

Millennial 

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Social media has created shortcuts to hard-to-access communities, enabling discovery and connection​

Sharing things online feels very easy compared to in-person, as I am not speaking to any one person specifically. I’m not editing myself to fit a certain person.

Gen Z

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FromNeedToBurningNeed

There has always been a need for humans to live in alignment, but number of factors have come together in more recent years to accelerate this need.

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81%

%

of Australians agree that what was important to them became of even greater importance during COVID.

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75%

%

of Australians have made changes, are changing, or want to make future changes.

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There are four main barriers limiting our ability to change​

58%

Time/knowledge restraints
(Mostly Gen Y and Gen Z)

%

51%

Financial barriers
(Mostly Gen Y)

%

42%

Lack of confidence
(Mostly Female, Metro)

%

23%

Fear of the unknown
(Everyone)

%
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TheBrandImperative

It’s clear that the desire to have our lives reflect our identity is an enduring human need, and that the experiences of the past few years have accelerated and put greater focus on this need. In the past, we may have asked how brands can best reflect or represent these needs. But the question now is how can brands actively support someone expressing and living their identity?

Social media has created shortcuts to hard-to-access communities, enabling discovery and connection​

“Today I saw an ad by Bras N Things that showed a plus size woman with voluptuous curves. Seeing this ad made me whoop and fist pump the air!”

Millennial​​

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When it comes to identity and personal expression, there are four categories that brands fall into:

Champion brands

That seek to make change by showcasing different people and supporting different voices and viewpoints

Positive support

Brands that authentically represent a wide range of different people

None

Brands that do nothing to represent anyone outside the mainstream

Negative impact

Brands that showcase tokenistic representation or harmful stereotypes

We surveyed 50 brands on how they represent different aspects of people's identities ​

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Source: Nine’s Proprietary Research - I am what I am: Identity and Brands

For further information on the research, contact your Nine representative or complete the form.
A member of the team will be in touch.

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Rise of the Super Consumer

TheRiseOfTheSuperConsumer

MeetTheSuperConsumer

Meet the Super Consumers

In 2021, Powered by Nine introduced you to the Blindspot in Australian marketing - a high value audience who were under valued and under represented, but worth $2.3 billion in weekly household spend. That blindspot is Australians aged 55-64.

Earlier this year, we partnered with GFK to undertake a new study, taking a deeper dive into the behaviours and impact of the Super Consumer.

Source: ID Consulting, census 2021

Recap on the event

What you need to know

01

Australia's population is ageing

From 2016 to 2021* Australia’s population has increased by 2.02 million, with 13% of that growth coming from people aged 55-64.

Overall, the median age has increased from 35 to 38 over the past 20 years.

While people aged 25-44 represent the largest age cohort in terms of population (28%), the 45-64 year groups equate to 25%, of which around half are over 55.

Source: ID Consulting, census 2021

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Rethinking retirement

The retirement age is the oldest it has been since the early 1970s.

Shift in retirement age since early 2000s:

Men
63.2 > 66.2

Women
61.7 > 64.8

Source: KPMG, Feb 2023. ‘When will I retire?’ Educated Aussies are choosing to work longer. [1] ABS, RBA Mar 2020 'Demographic Trends, Household Finances and Spending'

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Highest household income

45-54s record the highest household income and household consumption whilst 55-64s are on par with 35-44s, and increasing at the fastest rate.

Households headed by 55-64s recorded the highest real income growth, and their ability to draw down from their super further fuels consumption growth.

Growth in household consumption can be attributed to lifestyle changes:

  1. Stronger growth in their incomes, compared with other age groups.
  2. Household composition changes, such as children staying at home longer, or increased life expectancy.

Source: ABS, RBA Mar 2020 'Demographic Trends, Household Finances and Spending'

ResilientSuperConsumers

And while most Australians are struggling with the rising cost of living...

55-64s are the resilient super consumers

Less affected by the rising cost of groceries, interest rates, rental rates, and low wage growth

Source: Nine Consumer Pulse survey, March 2023

Report the lowest levels of financial distress (vs. other, younger age groups) and are significantly more likely to report that they have not experienced any financial distress in the last 12 months

Source: GfK Study April 2022

Feeling overall more positive than younger Australians

Source: Nine Consumer Pulse survey, March 2023

Spending habits

In the past 6 months, 45-64s have been spending on a wide range of categories from dining out and beauty to gardening and technology. They have also been spending more on all categories when compared to last year, with 49% having spent more on travel (domestic and overseas). And are spending more on key categories than their younger counterparts.

45-64s spending more when compared to last year vs average

Education_Icon_2

Education
(Higher among 55-64s, x1.4)

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Solar power

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Experiences and entertainment
(Theatre, cinema, etc. – higher among 55-64s, x1.2)

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Furniture
(Higher among 55-64, x1.3)

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Technology
(Eg. smartphone, laptop, earphones – higher among 55-64s, x1.2)

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Domestic travel/holidays

Source: GfK bespoke survey, April 2023

SuperConsumersAreSimilar

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Despite their higher purchasing power, as consumers they are very similar to some of their younger counterparts

When it comes to brand loyalty, there are many generational similarities

Let us know how much you personally agree or disagree with each.
NET: Agree (%)

SuperConsumers_Graph_01_2

Source: GfK bespoke survey, April 2023​

Their media consumption is spread across multiple platforms

In a typical week, which, if any of the follow do you read, watch or listen to? (%)

SuperConsumers_Graph_02_3

Source: GfK bespoke survey, April 2023

Personal values are relatively consistent across all age groups too

Honesty_Icon

Honesty

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Protecting the family

Authenticity_Icon

Authenticity

Freedom_Icon

Freedom

EnjoyingLife_Icon

Enjoying life

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Stable personal relationships

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Self-esteem

Friendship_Icon

Friendship

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Self-reliance

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Working hard

WhenItComesToBeingGreen

However, when it comes to being green, 45-54s and 55-64s stand out among younger cohorts

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Source: GfK Consumer Life, April 2023

03

Super Consumers are influencers

SuperConsumersAreInfluencers

"My mother bought a car. I recommended Toyota because of its reliability."

Male, 55-64

"Typically mobile phones and what is best for my parents."

Male, 55-64

"My dad has asked me if I knew anything about toasters so I described the toaster (I recently purchased) and where I purchased it from."

Female, 55-64

"I was asked by my parents what streaming products I recommend and I highly recommended Netflix as it is the best brand for streaming the latest movies."

Male, 45-54

Influencing generations before...

...and after them

"My daughter and her wife have just bought their first house. As part of setting up their new home, they have needed to buy new appliances and organise plumbers and electricians. My daughter has asked my opinion on both brands and contractors to help her make decisions on what to purchase and who from. I have been happy to help with that as I know she values my opinions gained from life experience."

Male, 55-64

"I have advised my adult daughters on recommendations for things like insurance, supermarket products like brands of tea and coffee to just name a couple...

Also, my experiences with my laptop brand and the store I bought it from."

Female, 55-64

"My daughter admired my coffee machine. I explained its features and what was needed for the average coffee buff. We discussed brands that she had been looking at in comparison to what I had."

Female, 45-54

"My son has wanted to purchase the same sort of fridge that I had just bought. So, I guided him on what to look for in a fridge and the companies/websites to look at or avoid."

Female, 55-64

Source: GfK bespoke survey, April 2023 qualitative interviews​

And their influence is not limited to their immediate family

Shopping_Icon

2 in 5

(45-64s)

told us they are involved in the purchase of brands/products for their family and friends

Talk_Icon

1 in 3

(45-64s)

said that they actively talk about experiences they have with brands, products or services

Source: GfK bespoke survey, April 2023

Super Consumers are...

Financially
resilient

Informed and engaged

Highly
influential

SuperConsumersAre

Now is the moment to re-think 'how we've always done it.'

For further information on the research, contact your Nine representative or complete the form. A member of the team will be in touch.

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The Portuguese chook that put some punch into poultry

Oporto-LIAU-Powered-Lock
The Portuguese chook that put some punch into poultry 

Oporto and Nine’s Powered unit blended Ehrenberg-Bass, Les Binet, Peter Field and Daniel Kahneman’s thinking to drive brand uplift, and sell more flaming good chicken, via Love Island Australia.

It’s been a busy few years of marketing headlines as we’ve observed the clashing of our Australian academic titans, raced to get to better attention metrics, argued over short-term sales tactics at the expense of brand building, and everything in between.

The recent Mi3 podcast with James Hurman and Douwe Bergsma was so deeply refreshing after such a tsunami of “mine is better than yours”. It was almost cathartic one might say, as they talked us through their best ever recipe for building and communicating a brand for success. It felt reassuringly familiar for those of us who treasure our dog-eared hard-cover copy of How Brands Grow (2010), and who managed to download The Long + The Short of It three years later (2013) from the IPA, (we respect those of you who waited patiently for the hard cover to hit our shores).

If we loved Professor of Psychology and Behavioural Economics Dan Ariely, and his fabulously upside down book Predictably Irrational, it probably whetted our appetite for Thinking Fast and Slow by the extraordinary Daniel Kahneman where System One and Two thinking instinctively made sense as we saw ourselves and how we make choices. The power of emotion in our decision making was perfectly placed front and centre.

If you’ve read this far, you’ll be wondering why a headline about poultry penned by Powered at Nine has anything to do with this? Well, here it is.

We’re a smart, experienced, and deeply engaged group of dreamers, thinkers and doers, who read, debate, argue and then come together in fresh and fabulous ways to bring Nine’s brands to the service of our clients, to help them grow.

That’s what happened when we met Sam Bragg, the CEO of Portuguese chicken brand Oporto.

Clever chickens,
no bird brains


With Powered’s friends at Brand + Story we introduced the real live founder of Oporto to a new generation. Their parents may have hung around Bondi back in the 1980s’ but they had no idea. Talking with Gen Z about Antonio Cerqueira felt right; he was authentic, and he didn’t take himself too seriously. Our client Sam Bragg gave us her trust to explore how we could bring him to life with this audience at Nine.

Brand + Story shot the campaign on location in Southern Europe. Australia met Antonio Cerqueira during the first episode of Love Island Australia. In the launch 30-second commercial the Oporto founder was back home in Portugal looking for recipe ideas, but had also decided to make his own ads. Upon hearing that some young Australians were being held “hostage” on a Spanish island, with little to wear and not much to eat (his interpretation, not ours) he was on a mission to find and feed them. The campaign unfolded as a sequential story of 30 and 15-second spots throughout the series as we follow Antonio on his journey.

Choice of a new generation

Back to the Hurman/Bergsma recipe. What we baked instinctively (thank you Ehrenberg-Bass, Peter Field, Les Binet and Daniel Kahneman) was pretty damn close.

1. We pulled together a commercial model for Oporto that gave them a robust share of voice on Love Island Australia with strong creative cut-through.

2. We didn’t go down a hyper targeting rabbit hole, instead agreeing that anyone watching Love Island Australia and loving QSR was fair game.

3. Sam Bragg was already a fan of Binet/Field and we agreed that Oporto needed to establish its authentic brand story, one that could build over time, to create future demand, not only short-term sales.

4. Mental availability simply means easy to think of in a buying situation. We needed to make it easy for people to go “Oporto!” It was part of the brief to Brand + Story and boy did they deliver. The low-fi, home-made feel of the campaign was talked about in creative circles and amongst our audience (anecdotally). We had a new shout out “Oporto”, we now wave our finger when we want to order more chilli sauce, and more young Australians now know the authentic story of the brand.

5. The beginning, middle and end of this southern European saga was emotionally charged. Classic story telling, with a heroic protagonist, an important goal and finally, salvation. We had Portugal, we had high drama (Australian hostages), we had a less than competent (albeit loveable) home movie maker starring in his own Portuguese chicken ads that looked like they were shot on his phone (some were!) We laughed, we cried, we ordered more chicken.

6. As a challenger brand, the need for creativity that punched above its weight was critical for Oporto. And we had a client brave enough to go with it. We had negotiated the Love Island Australia IP with ITV Studios, to give us licence to play, and we had Brand + Story primed to break the rules for QSR advertising. There wasn’t one glossy hero food shot to be found, just plenty of happy Portuguese and an even happier Antonio.

Did it work, you ask?


We probably wouldn’t be crowing about it if it hadn’t worked, but here are the tracking results* for Oporto with Powered by Nine: 

This was the first year Oporto had sponsored Love Island Australia. Not only did it meet the industry benchmark for a sponsorship, but it also exceeded, with the kind of numbers Gemba is used to tracking for a sponsorship in its third year.

Unsurprisingly, Love Island Australia viewers track with higher levels of engagement with QSR brands, which is exactly why Powered recommended a Love Island Australia sponsorship. Oporto had the highest uplift in the category, from 14 per cent to 24 per cent.

Enjoyment levels whizzed up to 67 per cent versus the TVC average of 52 per cent and personal relevance peaked at 61 per cent versus a 51 per cent TVC average.

The brand was easy to recall, the creative increased familiarity with Oporto, and we were bang on in driving Oporto’s authenticity with our Gen Z audience.

Source: All metrics and measurement via Gemba

Samantha Bragg

Samantha Bragg, CEO of Oporto, is happy: “It’s been a really refreshing and rewarding way to work, coming together as a cross-discipline creative team, with great stewardship from Nine throughout the journey.” 


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What’s the big idea? Probably the difference between growing and being forgotten for brands in 2023

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Thought Leadership

What’s the big idea? Probably the difference between growing and being forgotten for brands in 2023 

At a time when consumer spending seems uncertain, caution probably feels like a sensible path to take, but slow and steady will not win this race. Do something different, command attention or risk getting lost in the sea of same and at worst, forgotten, says Toby Boon, Powered by Nine’s Director of Strategy & Creative Solutions.  

“I want my MTV”, Mohammed Ali as St Sebastian on the cover of Esquire, Bobby Kennedy’s election campaign – when it comes to Big Ideas, there are few people in advertising who can claim to have had more than George Lois. 

In fact the legendary ad man, who passed away late last year, was often known as the “father of the Big Idea” – defining a concept that doesn’t just connect with consumers, but sears the virtues of the product into the viewer’s brain and heart”.  

For most of us working in media, marketing and advertising it was probably the “big ideas” that first attracted us to our trade, and it is the pursuit of them which keeps many of us in the business.

But for every “I still call Australia home” or “Tonight, I’ll be eating …” there are hundreds of hardworking campaigns that manage to drive sales, raise awareness and nudge their brand in the right direction. And surely that’s enough, right? 

Maybe not. In 2021, Havas’ Meaningful Brands study described an “age of cynicism” with respondents stating that 75 per cent of brands could simply disappear overnight and be easily replaced.  

Cost-of-living pressures are another factor driving changes in Australians’ consumer behaviour as they seek to balance a desire to align with brands that reflect their values and the realities of their budget. According to McKinsey, Australian shoppers are increasingly switching brands and open to experimentation with how and where they shop 

So what will it take for brands to survive and thrive in 2023 – to stand out from the pack and build those meaningful, longer-lasting connections with consumers? Put simply, it will take bigger, better ideas. But big ideas don’t always come easy. George Lois told us that “you can be cautious, or you can be creative (but there is no such thing as a cautious creative)”.  

At a time when consumer spending seems uncertain, caution probably feels like a sensible path to take, but slow and steady will not win this race.  

I believe there is a path for brands to cut through and navigate the choppier waters of 2023’s consumer behaviour. And whilst Lois could define the options in two “C”s – creativity and caution – it will take me three (or maybe four) to make my case.  

TobyBoonHeadshot

Toby Boon
Director of Strategy & Creative Solutions
Powered by Nine

Confident partnerships


There is no doubt that media consumption is changing, but as a recent Kantar study has demonstrated, Total TV remains the dominant player when it comes to raising brand awareness and driving overall impact. 

Yet it’s not only reach that TV sponsorships and alignments deliver on. Integration within these environments has been proven to boost the effectiveness of broader campaigns, in particular driving up the impact of TVCs. 

Mass media-led partnerships which brands can be confident in offer a strong foundation for big ideas. Westpac’s new partnership with the NRL makes sense from an audience and reach perspective, but it is the way in which the bank has leveraged its sponsorship to change the vernacular of the game and deliver additional value to fans via the Westpac Red Zone which will create long-lasting cut-through. 

11218 Westpac NRL - Title Page (1) (1)

Courageous creativity


Former Dove and Burger King marketing chief-turned Activision Blizzard CMO, Fernando Machado, told us: “In the world that we live in people have more important things to do than paying attention to your brand. So you may as well do something different, unique, engaging, that will earn people’s attention.” 

Back in 2020, marketers faced similarly uncertain times – albeit in different circumstances – and many in the industry responded by playing it safe. Wistful piano tracks and supportive “we’ve got this” messages blended into each other. No brand in 2023 wants to be “one of the pack”. It’s in moments like this that brave brands will make big moves with real meaning behind them – such as NRMA’s game-changing 'A Fire Inside' campaign. 

PawBlackmores_Tile

Collaboration


A degree of turbulence in the market also provides an opportunity for all of us to take a step back and think about our ways of working. What got us here might not be the thing that moves us forward. Shaking up our processes and exploring new ways of working with partners could make the difference. Bringing media owners into the creative process early on, through workshops and ideation rather than in the final straight, opens up a world of possibilities for brands – allowing advertisers the opportunity to be part of the content journey, and giving publishers a deeper connection with what the brand wants to achieve. (Here’s how.) 

There is little doubt that a bumpy road lies ahead of us in 2023, but for the confident, creative and collaborative brands that embrace the power of big ideas, the ride might just be a lot smoother.  

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Contact us for more information on how your brand can leverage the power of Nine to deliver real business outcomes.

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Footy on Nine Audio

Group 8

ALL CODES COVERED ON NINE AUDIO

Footy cuts deep into our culture and community. It’s powerful because it’s real, unscripted, and the stories live on long after the stadium lights go down.

In 2023, Nine Audio is your one-stop shop for official NRL and AFL coverage, with access to the best live games as well as pre and post-game commentary from some of the country’s leading broadcasters.

To find out what your brand can achieve with a premium footy on Nine Audio partnership, request a tailored response to help realise your marketing objectives today.

NRL ON NINE AUDIO IS
IN A LEAGUE OF ITS OWN

For decades, Nine Audio has brought the sport that we can't get enough of, rugby league, to the homes and hearts of listeners all around the country.

NRL offers 32 weeks of continuous conversation, spread across multiple competitions, providing opportunities to tell your brand story in and around key calendar moments – this year like never before.

Premium-programming

PREMIUM PROGRAMMING

Only Nine Radio has exclusive radio rights to the best premium games each weekend on 2GB and 4BC: Friday 8.00pm, Saturday 5.30pm and 7.30pm, and Sunday afternoons at 4.00pm. Giving brands the ability to integrate into live sport across multiple weekly touch points.

Premium-talent

PREMIUM TALENT

The Continuous Call Team’s high-profile heritage talent – Mark Levy, Darryl Brohman, Mark Riddell, David Morrow and Paul Gallen, as well as Boyd Cordner and Josh Morris – are joined by new member Allana Ferguson, a former star Jillaroo, in 2023.

Premium-Audience

PREMIUM AUDIENCE

One in two (54%) of our football listeners are exclusive to Nine Radio – you can’t reach them anywhere else. With a national reach of nearly 2 million listeners per week, we talk to footy fans 24/7.

Source: Source: GfK Radio360 Ratings Survey 4 2023, 2GB Sydney or 4BC Brisbane Fri 7pm-10pm, Sat 1-10pm, Sun 1-7pm, 3AW Melbourne Fri 6pm-12MN, Sat 12-12MN, Sun 12-7pm, 6PR Perth, Sat 12-9pm, Sun 12-6pm, Cume (000s), Exclusive Cume (000s) (#M), National Cume Mon-Sun 5.30am-12MN Nine Radio 2GB, 3AW, 4BC, 6PR, AP10+, unless otherwise specified.

NINE'S NRL FANS CAN'T GET ENOUGH OF THE CONTINUOUS CALL TEAM

+

OF NRL AUDIO CONTENT

We are a direct line to the nation’s footy fans, serving up the biggest and best rugby league Australia has to offer, with world-class analysis of all the action on and off the field.

THE PASSION FOR RUGBY LEAGUE DELIVERS
STRONG AUDIENCES ACROSS ALL AUDIO PLATFORMS

Continuous Call Team in Sydney

+

Session Starts in June^

+

NRL Podcast Downloads in June^

Source: Radio360 Ratings Sydney Survey 4 2023, Fri 7pm-10pm, Sat 1-10pm, Sun 1-7pm, Market Share (NRL Broadcasters Only), 2GB AP10+. ^Triton Australian Podcast Ranker June 2023, CCT, Six Tackles with Gus, 2GB Wide World of Sport, 100% Footy, Top Blokes, Stories of Origin, Triton Webcast Metrics, June 2023, Session Starts, Fri 7pm-10pm, Sat 1-10pm, Sun 1-7pm, 2GB
NRLW_Players

THE PINNACLE OF WOMENS RUGBY LEAGUE
RIGHT HERE ON NINE AUDIO

Nine’s Wide World of Sports has made a landmark investment in the growth of women’s rugby league, with every game of the 2023 NRLW season to be broadcast live and free in HD on the 9Network and streamed on 9Now.

The biggest season of free-to-air rugby league in history just got bigger with the expanded 48-game NRLW season, kicking off on Saturday, July 22, and showcasing the women’s game on the platform with the biggest reach in the country.

The NRLW is set for an even bigger and better year in 2023 on Nine Audio.
With increased coverage across the 2023 season with full calls of State of Origin Games 1 and 2, and the NRLW Grand Final by our No.1 NRL call team. Plus, a dedicated weekly women in league segment on the Continuous Call Team and Wide World of Sports, and a weekly podcast dedicated to NRLW.

AFL ON NINE AUDIO: A NEW ERA OF LISTENING

When it comes to the AFL, Nine’s two football stations, 3AW and 6PR, are second to none. With longer pre-game and post-game analysis than anyone else, our coverage is unmatched.

We have extended our decades-long partnership with the AFL. For the first time, not only will our listeners have access to 3AW and 6PR’s unrivalled commentary and coverage through their local station, our new agreement incorporates full streaming rights across Australia, giving fans the ability to listen anywhere, anytime, on any device.

AFL_PLAYERS

NEW AFL STREAMING RIGHTS

Our two-year deal with the Australian Football League gives Nine Radio six matches to call each week on 3AW and 6PR. Plus, for the first time, these matches will be available through the 3AW and 6PR app and website. 

AFL_Premium-programming

ONE PLACE TO CATCH ALL THE ACTION

Nine Radio’s new broadcast rights deal ensures the only place to hear the biggest names and best opinions in footy is directly through Nine – the home of the AFL. 

AFL_RadioTalent

AN ALL-STAR LINEUP OF AFL BROADCASTERS

3AW has been proudly broadcasting Aussie Rules for almost 80 years and our commentary team for 2023 is arguably the best we've ever assembled. With talent such as Jacqui Felgate, Anthony Hudson, Leigh Matthews, Jimmy Bartel, Sam McClure and more, the stories of AFL will be told by Australia's greats.

NINE AUDIO'S PLATFORMS ARE A DIRECT LINE INTO
AFL FANS ACROSS THE NATION

3AW Melbourne

+

Session Starts in June^

+

AFL Podcast Downloads in June^

Source: GfK Radio360 Ratings, Melbourne Survey 4 2023, Market Share %, AFL Broadcasters Only, Fri 6pm-12MN, Sat 12-12MN, Sun 12-7pm, AP10+, unless otherwise specified. ^Triton Australian Podcast Ranker June 2023, 3AW is Footy, Real Footy, Footy Classified, Footy Nightline, 3AW Wide World of Sport, Triton Webcast Metrics, June 2023, Session Starts, Fri 7pm-10pm, Sat 1-10pm, Sun 1-7pm, 3AW or 6PR

AFLW Players

AFLW ON NINE AUDIO
A SPORTING REVOLUTION YOU'LL WANT TO HEAR

Brace yourself for fierce athleticism, unmatched skill and a level of passion that will leave you breathless. The women of AFLW are rewriting the history books, shattering barriers, and redefining what it means to be an athlete. From bone-crunching tackles to spectacular goals, every match is a testament to their dedication and resilience.

Don't miss a moment of this electrifying competition on Nine Audio, as heroes rise, rivalries ignite and legends are born. AFLW is where the spirit of the game meets the power of women, and it's a sporting revolution you won't want to miss!

The League will enter its second season with a full 18 teams and continues to go from strength to strength. The season will begin in August with the Home and Away season running for 10 Rounds with four weeks of Finals to follow and the Grand Final slated for November.

DIGITAL STREAMING OF PREMIUM SPORTING CONTENT IS ON THE RISE

CONTEXTUAL RELEVANCE MAKES YOUR MESSAGE WORK HARDER

With new contextual streaming opportunities now available through our Sports Fans Package, your brand can reach footy fans nationally across the NRL on 2GB and 4BC plus AFL on 3AW and 6PR. In fact, studies have also shown how ad-context alignment drives business outcomes:​

+

Enhanced engagement with contextual advertising

+

Average increase in purchase intent due to contextual alignment

+

Increase in unaided awareness

+

Lift in sales

Source: Radiocentre’s ‘Emotional Multiplier’ study & ARF’s contextual alignment study 2020.

THE HOME OF SPORTS PODCASTING

Nine's top sports journalists, experts and commentators keep sports fanatics informed and engaged across Australia all year round. On average, attracting 670,000 podcast downloads each month during football across sport categories.

Source: Triton Podcast Metrics, March-June 2023 Average, Total Nine, Downloads, Category = Sport.

ORIGINAL NINE FOOTY PODCASTS

IF IT MATTERS TO FANS, FOOTY ON NINE AUDIO WILL DELIVER

Sports marketing is a powerful tool that numerous brands have leveraged to deliver real success. Best of all, it’s a genre that works across virtually every industry. Why does it have such power? Because it has the winning ability to connect brands with fans.

Nine’s leading audio platforms offer just that. Connecting with footy fans who are passionate, highly engaged, have money to spend, and immerse themselves in premium footy content week after week across all codes.

_NRL_TV
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The reigning premiers
of creativity and results

Big ideas make brands famous.
As does the power of premium sporting content.

And with the help of Powered by Nine, we have a big idea for every budget, underpinned by Australia’s best footy content spanning television, digital, print and radio. From the main game to the experts and the entertainers, we provide brands with an unrivalled platform to tell their story.

01
02
03
04
NRL_Maccas

Macca's season-long strategic campaign brought to life across Nine Radio

Challenge: To entrench Macca’s into the NRL audiences’ game-day ritual and become the favourite and most trusted QSR brand.

Solution: Macca’s combined a season-long naming rights partnership with clever creative executions and messaging across the Continuous Call Team’s weekend coverage, plus extensions into the Wide World of Sports program.

Picture-1

A 'Who will deliver' segment analysing the player who the talent think will "deliver" for their team in the game.

A clever use of creative, leading listeners to believe they were hearing show talent enjoying their Macca’s delivery behind the scenes, with the mic accidentally left on.

Visual branding on studio TVs combined with on-air messaging gave Macca’s interactive ownership.

AFL_Holden

Honda MPE's spring campaign brought to life through a finals partnership with 3AW footy

Challenge: Increase consideration and position the Honda MPE top of mind by re-establishing Honda Power Equipment as a premium brand.

Solution: By leveraging a 3AW footy finals partnership, Honda MPE unlocked the premium nature of Nine’s audio broadcasting. The conversation was extended with a focus on durability and reliability of their premium products through creative segments placing Honda MPE at the forefront in this space.

Holden

Each week the commentary team in partnership with Honda nominated the most durable and reliable player of the day. Reflecting on the player who was a mainstay for the team and tapping into Honda’s brand traits of durability and reliability, it drove the brand story home with listeners.

To find out more about what your brand can achieve through a premium footy partnership with Nine Audio, request a tailored response to help realise your marketing objectives today.

Request more information - GENERIC

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Powered Unpacked: Powered Predicts 2023

Powered Predicts 2023

Powered by Nine delivers crystal ball for brands, tapping into cultural trends data
to shape big ideas in 2023

Nine is using its own consumer trends research to create new formats for brands: culture feeds media and media feeds culture, says Powered by Nine's Director of Strategy & Creative Solutions, Toby Boon. Meanwhile, the latest Powered Predicts findings have significant implications for brand acquisition and retention strategies: 2023 is all about value revalued.  

Chief Sales Officer Michael Stephenson has challenged Nine’s Powered unit “to come up with bigger ideas in 2023”, says Head of Creative Solutions, Kate Waugh. To deliver, she’s tapping into Nine’s own trend-tracking research to feed media with the latest cultural insights. Powered by Nine's Head of Strategy, Steve Caunce, urges marketers to harness Powered Predicts data to shape their own plans – because unlike the plethora of trends reports flooding CMO inboxes, it’s grounded in reality.  

“Powered Predicts is designed to be practical so that it can be realistically applied to businesses. But it is also grounded in genuine consumer insight. Everything we put out there is backed up quantitatively because we survey everything with our own audiences,” says Caunce.  

Given the sheer weight of economic uncertainty today, robust evidence is critical, says Caunce. It means marketers can apply the findings with confidence to their own strategies.  

Nine is walking the walk, applying its cultural trends research to its own programming. Culture feeds media – and media feeds culture, Boon suggests. Waugh agrees. “Media continues to play a critical role in shifting the dynamic of cultural trends in mainstream conversations,” says Waugh.

She cites Married at First Sight as a standout, “It showcases the way we’re discussing the current relationship revolution, which would otherwise be seen in the shadows. More honest representation of sexuality, use of social media in relationships, and terms such as gas-lighting.” Big Miracles is another example. “It’s an honest portrayal of couples’ fertility journey,” says Waugh. “It’s triggering for some, but it’s asking others – and brands especially – to lean in on these journeys and add value.”

Value revalued: acquisition-retention impacts

Value is key going into 2023, Powered Predicts findings suggest.

Steve Caunce said it is the dominant theme of the trends uncovered in Nine’s research – and has major implications for marketers’ customer acquisition and retention strategies. The report dubs it 'value revalued'.  

“The cost of living is the biggest issue we are facing right now, and it’s affecting everybody, but it goes beyond that. Shortages of raw materials and workers, strained distribution, the destruction of our natural environment are all challenging and reshaping what consumers value or where they see value. This is being reflected by the fact that globally we are seeing consumers switch brands at unprecedented levels,” he said.  

“The key lesson for us is that it’s important that consumers feel some degree of control within the chaos. They want to feel empowered and they’re looking for help to do this, and it presents a really great opportunity for brands. In fact one of our 2023 Cultural Conversations this year is going to be on value as we aim to unpack how consumers want to see value from brands.”  

That insight will feed directly into Nine’s strategic work with advertisers, said Kate Waugh.  

“Value revalued is the most important Powered trend to come out of this research. Consumers are more considered in their purchasing behaviours and what they value has changed. They expect more from brands, mostly in the form of experiences, whether that be the experience in-store or online. At Nine, this type of trend will formulate our cross-platform, ideation, creativity and storytelling – and working with brands to ensure we’re adding value to the audiences.”  

PP_3Tiles_1

Balance required

Steve Caunce thinks marketers will find value from the Powered Predicts research because it signals shifts in sentiment and cultural trends – which gives brands a chance to understand and plan around those trends as they evolve.  

“For most marketers, being on this trajectory or this journey means there’s a smoother path to entry once momentum hits the mainstream,” he said.   

But he underlined that there is always a balance to be struck.  

“It’s important not to get caught up in trends that are fleeting" he says. 

"Meaningful cultural shifts that have scale and longevity are the ones that provide the greatest opportunity.”  

Explore Powered Predicts 2023.

Contact us for more information on how your brand can leverage the power of Nine to deliver real business outcomes.

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Powered Unpacked: Activision Blizzard CMO Fernando Machado

Activision Blizzard's Chief Marketing Officer: Fernando Machado

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"If you invest behind creativity, then unlock it, it can give you disproportional growth"
says Machado.

If you have the right relationships, and you are brave enough, together you will get your creativity over the line. Without that, brands will just continue to interrupt and in turn get ignored by their customers, suggests former Dove and Burger King marketing chief-turned-Activision Blizzard CMO, Fernando Machado. Nurturing ideas in a genuine partnership with your agency is critical – the team is everything. It’s an investment in time and it’s worth it. Get it right, like BK’s Whopper Detour did, and enjoy that 37:1 ROI.* 

Invest in creativity

 

Anointed by Forbes as one of the world’s three most influential CMOs, Activision Blizzard’s Fernando Machado previously directed the fortunes of Burger King and Unilever’s Dove, unleashing some of the world’s best known brand campaigns and driving massive growth. But, talking to Nine’s Director of Brand, Michele O’Neill, he says he could not have done it without his creative agency partners. In some cases, he moved in with them. Literally.

Meanwhile, Machado thinks the rush for engagement and attention by marketers could backfire: too many brands are mistaking interruption for creativity. “It’s not enough to just push the message anymore,” says Machado. “It all starts with the idea – and an idea is not going to fall on your lap by accident.” Agencies, he says, must then help marketers get it over the line and win over an army of corporate stakeholders, or risk the idea never coming to life.

Creativity “can be a source of competitive advantage for businesses and brands”, says Machado. But it requires underpinning foundations. “If you have the right people in place, if you have the right relationships, and if you are brave enough, through creativity you will be able to unlock growth. That’s what I try to do.”

Those building blocks can then support great ideas – and nurture them to life through often-perilous infancy.

“It all starts with the idea, but you also need to understand the people you want to reach, you need to understand your brand and the history of the brand, understand culture, what’s out there, what’s on the zeitgeist, and then work with the right people, with the right process to unlock that creativity, which will prepare results,” says Machado. 

Safe work never cuts through

Embedding those rules and structures means brands stand a better chance of unlocking creativity, he says, leading to disproportionate growth. Otherwise, chances are people will largely ignore whatever it is you’re trying to convey. Safe work never cuts through.

“In the world that we live in people have more important things to do than paying attention to your brand. So you may as well do something different, unique, engaging, that will earn people’s attention.” 

But pursuit of attention – a metric the ad industry is investing massive sums in to develop – can be counterproductive if it doesn’t result in real engagement.

“It really doesn’t work anymore to just interrupt people. You need to create something that will stand out, something that gives me something back, not just pushing the message at people,” says Machado.

“It’s all about the idea. And the idea will lead you to how you are going to execute. Of course, if you have a powerful visual [he cites Doves Sketches campaign] that can be an amazing shortcut in terms of attention, in terms of engagement.”

Nurture ideas together

The idea is everything, especially at Burger King where Machado spent seven years as CMO. He executed memorable, award-winning campaigns, from the rule-breaking visual masterpiece of Mouldy Whopper to Whopper Detour, breathing creativity into their late-to-market mobile ordering app and payment system.

With Detour, Burger King geo-fenced 14,000 McDonald’s locations across the US and gave customers a coupon for a 1 cent Whopper – if they opened the app at (or next to) a McDonald’s. The results were 1.5 million app downloads in nine days and the highest foot traffic to Burger King stores in four years, with their most successful ROI in years.

“Back in the day, it was the best ROI we had in terms of bringing new users to our app,” says Machado. Not bad for the launch of something as potentially humdrum as mobile payment.

“That’s where creativity comes in. I needed an idea. An idea was presented – and it was not exactly what Whopper Detour was. But that is the other thing – when amazing ideas are presented, you need to nurture them." 

“That’s why it’s so important to work closely with the creative team and the agency and be a real partnership, because we helped shape that together with FCB New York: ‘Hey, what if we did this? What if we did that? What if we use this idea to launch mobile order and payment?’ And honestly, it was love at first sight when we articulated it that way.”

The campaign generated mass press coverage. “You can now get a Whopper for 1 cent, only at McDonald’s. People are like, ‘No, no, no, Burger King, right? You mean Burger King?’ No, McDonald’s,” says Machado. “And that was the beauty of the idea, and people just went and had fun with it.”

The long game

Machado says he was able to build powerful brand platforms and campaigns because he also had closely aligned senior C-suite execs who understood the potential for disproportionate growth through creativity. Those relationships also contributed to his lengthy tenures – 18 years at Unilever and seven years as CMO at Burger King’s parent, RBI. The average CMO tenure globally is around 40 months.

Machado admitted that “if I were there for one or two years it would have been trickier. I would be much more short-term oriented because I would like to show results quickly”.

Being able to focus on key issues with a longer-term vision also enables brands to own and generate a legacy, says Machado, citing Dove’s leadership on female empowerment.

“If you concentrate in one area or in a few areas in your work consistently over time, you increase your chance of being able to own that. To this day, if I see an ad that is about self-confidence or real beauty, people watch it and they feel like, ‘Oh, that’s like Dove.’ Dove owns that.”

Live with the agency

Key to everything, Machado reiterates, is to partner with the agency genuinely and deeply. In some cases he moved in with them, literally – security pass, toothbrush and a desk. “I never treated the agency as a supplier. To me they are part of the team. I want them to understand how my business is doing, I want them to understand how difficult it can be to get things through with stakeholders. I want them to win and lose with me.

“When I was working with BBH New York my thumbprint would work to open the door because I was arriving so early. They gave me a desk. I had a phone number.

“Still, when I go to the BBH New York building, the guy who is at the door is still the same guy from back in 2005. And every time I go there he remembers my name because he’s a massive ABBA fan, so he sings Fernando every time. I’m not joking.”

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