UKTV G2 – Dave! The new school of branding 

20 September 2007 tbs.pm/69

To follow up on my colleague Andrew Bowden earlier post about UKTV G2 being rebranded as Dave, this is not the first time I’ve come across this particular branding phenomenon.

Like a lot of strange ideas, this one comes to us from North America. The first station to use this kind of ‘name’ branding was an American internet radio station, Jack FM. The name was then picked up by a Canadian broadcaster, Rogers Communications, and was then used on several canadian radion stations. There was an earlier ‘name’ station format, Bob FM, however, this is a more classic hits style format, than Jack FM is, and originally, Bob stood for Best of the best, rather than being a name per se.

None the less, Jack FM, Bob FM and later Dave FM became quite popular formats in Canada.

Meanwhile, in 2003, a US cable network, which had been formerly known as The Nashville Network, and had since been rebranded as The New TNN: The National Network, was again looking to redefine its image, and they settled on a ‘name’ too. Spike TV was due to be re-born on June 16th 2003. However due to an infamous lawsuit from movie director Spike Lee, the name change didn’t actually happen until August 11 2003.

Another channel that launched with a ‘name’ identity was BEN, in 2003. BEN actually stands for Bright Entertainment Network.

In the shopping section of the Sky digital EPG is a Max TV. Max is also a name, as well as being a shortening of maximum.

So this idea of using a name as a brand is hardly new, although with the recent failure of New York’s Jack FM 101.1 and the subsequent return to the oldies of WCBS FM 101.1, could this be an idea already on its way out? We shall see, but I have to say, I don’t like the idea of calling a TV channel Dave.

A Transdiffusion Presentation

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