ABC1 launched its new channel branding yesterday, built around the theme ‘Think Entertainment.’
New idents and a revamped logo hit the screen as part of a push by the channel to remind viewers it was more than news andcurrent affairs.
Channel Controller Brendan Dahill told TV Tonight that market research of the Top 20 channels had shown that audiences were no longer seeing ABC1 as synonymous with entertainment.
“It struck me very quickly that for every single channel except ABC1 people mentioned the words ‘entertaining or entertainment’ in the top ten values they felt about each channel,” he said.
“We had a lot of other really corporate values that we were pleased to see such as ‘credible, trusted, quality,’ but nobody was thinking of ABC1 as an entertainment destination.”
Yet programmes such as Spicks and Specks and The Gruen Transfer were repeatedly successful with broad audiences.
“We want to claim some credit for the fantastic entertainment that ABC’s done over the years and will continue to do.”
ABC TV’s Marketing Director Di Costantini developed the new campaign with The Lab, incorporating “think bubbles” and an ABC1 logo in a new colour palette of blue and burnt orange. Idents featuring personalities such as Wil Anderson, Adam Hills, Margaret Pomeranz, Myf Warhurst, Todd Sampson and Russel Howcroft are one of several strategic looks.
“There are some abstract elements that are just beautiful and there are some graphic-based elements that are more navigational and informational and the talent-based ones which are a bit of fun,” says Dahill.
Others will be seen without personalities, depending on the type of programme it is aligned with.
“You can’t really come out of a report about Cyclone Yasi and go straight into Wil Anderson. It would just feel completely wrong,” he says.
“Assuming these work, and I hope they do, these are going to be on air for a while, so we’re going to rollout a range of them.”
But he denied the ‘think bubbles’ were too close to TEN’s ‘button-push’ branding. Ironically, ABC1 is out to prove it is more than ‘seriously’ entertaining.
“There are a couple of areas that superficially are quite similar but I think fundamentally they are different,” he said.
The rebrand comes as ABC1 resumes its Monday night line-up and launches two of its major new series on Wednesday, Adam Hills In Gordon St Tonight and Marieke Hardy’s comic drama Laid.
“Those two shows are big shows for us and I really wanted to have a fresh-looking ABC1 around them.”
ABC2 will unveil its new look in April with ABC for Kids to follow later in the year.