Broadcast media 2017: Thoughts of communications agency in Edinburgh

by Chris Fairbairn

Tuesday, December 20th, 2016

Scotland’s TV and radio news won’t sit still in 2016 – the view of our communications agency in Edinburgh

communications agency in Edinburgh broadcast predictions for 2017

THE MAJORITY of PR’s out there will get all misty eyed if asked about their first piece of TV news coverage.

There’s nothing quite like it – and its linear format means engaged viewers are compelled to sit through each feature in its entirety (magic when it is a positive client story).

Perhaps it is still the holy grail of client coverage, yet broadcast media (referring here to TV and radio) is under threat. No longer is it the main source of news for the young – having been overtaken quite convincingly by social media.

Close to home and there are some sweeping changes on the horizon that admittedly don’t require superhuman powers of prediction – just a finger on the pulse – however are relevant to your business.

But just in case you thought we are resting on our laurels and playing it safe, we’ve thrown in some leftfield trends that perhaps you didn’t think would make an impact broadcast media next year.

So without further ado, here is our take on the changes to the broadcast media in 2017:

Scottish Six

A lot has been made about the introduction of the BBC’s ‘Scottish Six’ – an hour long six o’clock news show containing international, UK and Scottish news edited solely for Scottish audiences and replacing the current format that leaps to Reporting Scotland at the halfway point.

The new format is not without controversy – that could keep it from surfacing. Seen by some as a nationalist ‘land grab’ and (if the rumours are to be believed) causing uproar among BBC Scotland’s own ranks, it is still likely that the Scottish Six will still debut in 2017 due to overriding pressures on the BBC.

This should mean more editorial space for Scottish affairs on primetime news. Businesses will want to make sure their PR agency has a track record of delivering multi-platform coverage with a deep understanding of broadcast media, in order to make the most of this opportunity.

Local and loving it

We’ve ticked the box for auntie’s impending changes – but its rivals (and neighbours in Glasgow) STV have some interesting movements planned as well.

Although its STV Glasgow and STV Edinburgh hyper local channels have had mixed success, it has landed the contracts to roll out similar channels for Aberdeen, Dundee and Ayr.

The channels are set to launch in 2017 and likely to have a local news element to follow the magazine show ‘Live at Five’ that is currently broadcast across both STV Edinburgh and STV Glasgow.

Our agency has been there from the start – attending the STV Edinburgh launch. Our own director Raymond Notarangelo is also a regular guest on STV Edinburgh.

Organisations in Ayr, Aberdeen and Dundee will want to be in from the start – as the channels will experience a ‘honeymoon period’ – those that do will benefit from a very pleasant boost to their local profile – and for many individuals – their first taste of TV news.


Not a platform that is quite ready to ‘take over’ to the same extent as social media, but voice is on the rise again – with the likes of Amazon’s Echo and Apple’s vastly improved Siri likely to continue gaining traction in 2017.

This means that users can get a regular news update from the voice enabled devices – further reducing the need for broadcast media as a primary news source.

Like all innovations and gadgets, voice will ‘take-off’ as soon as it becomes convenient, easy and saves time – for this reason we don’t see it achieving stratospheric growth in 2017.  We can all but guarantee however that this time next year it will become far more prevalent.

It is certainly something Holyrood PR and all good communicators should be keeping a keen eye on.

The multimedia equipped, evolving journalist of 2017

Tightening budgets and improvements in technology have joined forces to fast forward the evolution of broadcast journalists. So many now are trained in camera work, and attend jobs as a one-man (or woman) team.

Beyond being an interesting piece of information for those outside the media game, there are real impacts for communications agencies – and businesses.

Time constraints on these same journalists and production teams mean that stories are at a huge advantage of making the cut if they can be supplied with quality images and video, (or B-roll).

METAL THEFT communications agency in ScotlandUsing a video supplied to broadcasters featuring bungling metal thieves, we helped ensure an important conference on metal theft achieved broadcast coverage to boost its voice

Expect to see these same journalists and production teams engage in new technologies such as 360 video – such as this excellent video taken by BBC Scotland team at the Hogmanay torchlight procession.


Remember podcasts – the next big thing that never quite was? We’ll they’re big again and impacting radio in a big way. In fact, 36% of the population listened to podcasts in 2016 and that figure is steadily rising thanks to appetite of the on-demand generation.

They deserve a nod as they continue to eat away at radio listening figures – providing a real opportunity for savvy content marketers.

Looking to refresh in 2017 and use a new communications agency in Edinburgh?

The broadcast media, along with the digital world and traditional press titles are in line for sweeping and major changes.

Make sure your PR agency is equipped to get the best outcomes for your business. Get in touch with our friendly team on 0131 561 2244 or by using the handy form below:

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Chris Fairbairn of Scottish public relations agency, Holyrood PR in Edinburgh

Chris Fairbairn

Chris Fairbairn is an Account Director with award-winning public relations agency Holyrood PR. He is part of an expert PR team delivering PR services to a wide range of clients from headquarters in Edinburgh, Scotland.

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