Southern Cross Media – owners of 14 regional television stations (including Southern Cross Ten, Tasmanian Digital Television, etc) and 68 regional commerical radio stations (including Sea FM, Star FM, etc) – are uniquely placed to not just offer content to a possible 95% of Australia’s population outside of the capital cities, but to do it in creative and unique ways that no other Australian media organisation can offer.

The Hit List and Hit List TV is just that. It’s a radio show with a TV show chaser, & it’s proving to be a winner.

Hosts Tim Dorman & Renee Peterson are both upbeat about this opportunity. Tim, a relative new-comer, accepts that he’s still got a lot to learn about the business of both radio & TV but knows this is an opportunity to grab with both hands – which he’s doing brilliantly. Renee on the other hand has been mentored by and worked with one of the best in the business – partnering Craig “Big Kahuna” Collett on-air for nearly 6 years and developing her skills as a content prodducer, the Hit List/TV is a logical step for her career and so offers some wisdom and experience to the mix.

Timmy & Renee play well off each other. Good natured jibes, passionate music fans & advocates, urinating on the other’s plants – it’s all part of the schtick that has seen the Hit List gain an increasing number of fans over the past year, and see an explosion of followers to Hit List TV when it airs. The co-hosts dynamic is central to shows and how they connect – to see Timmy & Renee act differently on TV to how they behave on radio would be counter-productive to both shows.

The use of social media is key to their success. No longer can radio hosts (or TV hosts!) sit back and only screen calls for their show. The audience is hyper-connected via Twitter and Facebook, and know their questions and statements connect directly with the stars (no tired/disinterested producer to get past here). The contact is encouraged and has blossomed a special following of live tweeters when Hit List TV airs on the weekends, with viewers tweeting thoughts about the show allowing the hosts (and producers) to not what worked and what didn’t. That kind of information, usually the domain of the telephone feedback groups, is vital to how the show(s) ebb and flow, and it means the listeners/viewers can hear and see their input matters.

The shows are unique in their common content, delivered via different platforms. The cost savings are obvious for SCM – the same hosts, delivering similar content, to the majority of their market using most of their broadcast mediums. It’s a model that has proven to be successful and will surely be one called on as the success of the proposed Austereo buyout comes under scruitiny when all of a sudden SCM has a much larger market to deliver to.

This kind of hybrid radio/TV is a smart move by SCM, and slickly delivered packages from Timmy & Renee only prove that as broadcast empires rise and expand the delivery of quality content will be paramount to your cross-media success. If you can make that content work on more than one medium – that’s gonna be even better on your bottom line.

(Extracts taken from tweeterview with Renne Peterson (HitListTwit) & SteveMolk on 22/02/2011. View the full conversation here.)


The Hit List – Weeknights 7pm to 10pm, SCM radio network.
Hit List TV – Sat/Sun from 10am, SCM TV network.