Channel Four was set up in 1982 with a public service remit for social groups not previously represented on TV. It is required by law to cater for tastes, interests and audiences not served by other UK television channels. Channel Four was always the more edgy of the stations; the one that showed the things other channels wouldn’t touch. This made it popular with younger viewers, and more than thirty years later, Channel Four is still the channel that reaches the younger audience.
The Channel Four Sales House incorporates the channels you would usually associate with Channel Four: E4, More Four, Film Four and Four Music. It also includes several you might not associate with Channel Four at first glance: Box TV, Kerrang, Heat, Magic, Kiss, Smash Hits, Dave, Eden, Alibi, Yesterday, Gold, Home, Really, Drama, Good Food, Watch, PBS America, BT Sport and ESPN.
These channels are the top group of channels for reaching the 16–24 age group; so if that’s who you’re trying to reach, this is where you should be advertising. In fact, E4 alone delivers more people in this age bracket than Channel Five. Channel Four Sales House also has the highest monthly reach for adults in the upper middle class, middle class and lower middle class brackets. Statistics reveal that in the past few years there has been a steady increase in the number of people who fall in these categories, generally referred to collectively as ABC1. Therefore it can be said that Channel Four Sales House reaches more of the population; certainly more of the population who would be inclined to buy products after seeing advertisements.
TV advertising on Channel 4 with an ad campaign placed with Channel Four Sales House can build brand awareness and coverage within the 16–34 age bracket faster than with other stations. The costs needn’t be prohibitive either. One spot per day for a month on UKTV is just £4,500 and on Home it’s £1,500. It should be mentioned though that a good quality ad campaign will feature slots on more than just one channel, with slots across different parts of the day.
As well as these channels, Channel Four also has its on demand service, 4oD. This has the highest monthly reach across all platforms that offer TV video on demand—it even reaches more people than cinema advertising these days. The good thing about advertising on 4oD is that when people get to the ad break, they are not able to skip forward and miss your ad.
The Broadcasters Audience Research Board provides weekly UK audience figures. It measures audiences seeing an advertisement on a purely quantitative basis: how many people it was shown to. Channel Four Sales House has other qualitative measures too, setting out to answer key questions posed about audiences, advertising effectiveness and incremental reach. There is also the UK Tribes initiative, which segments the 16–24 audience, identifying subcultures of young people and using this to help advertisers target young people more effectively.
When Channel Four was first set up it was seen as something of a groundbreaking initiative; it was cutting edge and edgy at the same time. It seems that thirty years later, Channel Four continues to be groundbreaking, not only in its programming but in its research and advertising targeting capabilities.
In short, if you want to advertise your product to people aged from 16-34, Channel Four is the place you need to be.
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