Radio Times 600

The Best Ever - Radio Times

Publishing Excellence Awards
Best Use of Video sponsored by PubMatic

Radio Times is not traditionally known for video. Radio Times is perfectly set up to produce written content, however it is not set up to produce ambitious video series. However, their needs to be a pivot towards video, as research shows that 72% of their audience watch video about TV / Film daily, excluding actual TV shows or films. This current space is being filled by individuals across a range of platforms such as TikTok and YouTube, and its vital that Radio Times claims this as another avenue to deliver their expert guidance on entertainment.

Recognising this, the team took on an incredibly ambitious project to create a brand new series dual published in video and as a podcast with high end production values to address these business challenges.

The process for creating “The Best Ever” started 9 months before launch and ended with the team creating thirteen 25-minute TV quality episodes in a debate format to illicit maximum engagement. To ensure they stayed on mission, the team workshopped the set design, content, branding, marketing, and distribution for six months before shooting. The process was intense, but worthwhile, as they created a show that was scalable, can pivot across the full range of entertainment genres, and provide star power with expert knowledge.

Each episode Morgan Jeffrey, Digital Editor of Radio Times hosts a debate featuring 3 guests. These was always a ‘star’ - an actor, writer, director or producer well known to the segment of the audience they were targeting. They were then accompanied by an expert in the field, such as an author, and a member of the Radio Times editorial team. Each episode tackled a different debate such as “The Best Ever TV Finale”, “The Best Ever Video Game” or “The Best Ever Bond Movie”.

The quality of the product is excellent, shot in 4K using 5 cameras in a custom built set in which they would film 3 episodes per day to maximise ROI.

Additionally, they produced 12 vertical social clips for each episode, specifically designed for mobile viewing and optimised for TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube Shorts and X. These clips serve as engaging teasers, drawing in viewers and directing them to the full-length content, thus expanding reach and fostering greater audience engagement.

In total, reach exceeded 12,800,000 and views exceeded 7,000,000. There were more than 37,000 social engagements, and the total deal value including The Best Ever of over £200k.

In addition to the above, all marketing channels performed above their usual benchmarks in terms of engagement rate, with some more than 50% ahead.

The team are delighted with the success of the project, and they have created something of immense quality. The attention to detail to create the best product possible was admirable, and the audience has responded to it fulfilling the original mission. Not only that, but talent is now approaching the team to be a part of season 2 which is very exciting.

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