Once known as the rock station, Triple M is stretching so far it risks diluting its brand to nothing.
First it was the rebrand of heritage gold format stations, now Triple M wants to be the brand for country music.
As of February, Triple M Country is now available in the main metro markets across Australia along with the other Triple M rock formats.
Southern Cross Austrero (SCA), owner of Triple M, is selling this as another step forward with further diversification for the Triple M brand.
SCA chief creative officer Guy Dobson says that “the launch of the Triple M Country signals the continued growth and diversification of the Triple M brand across Australia”.
“This is the next brand extension for Triple M – offering even more solutions for our clients and an even broader audience reach.” Dobson added.
While brand diversification can help drive brand growth, any potential new audience gain needs to be carefully weighed up against the potential brand confusion and damage it could cause.
New rock vs classic rock formats make sense for the brand as it helps keep fans who grew up with Triple M in the 80s engaged with the brand. There is also some music cross over between the stations anyway.
However, country music just doesn’t make sense for a brand that’s built its reputation as the Aussie rock station. It’s also hard to imagine country music fans would feel Triple M has any credibility to deliver them a country music station. Likewise, most Triple M fans wouldn’t like to think of their brand as ‘country’.
Industry insiders are again scratching their heads and wondering what the Triple M brand stands for now. Listeners are likely to be confused as well.
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Michael is Managing Partner and Strategy Director at Truly Deeply, a brand agency with 25 years’ experience working with brands to position them for growth. His deep expertise is in unlocking the strategic power of your brand to create a differentiated, compelling and authentic brand proposition that will engage all your audiences. Michael has extensive experience working across Australia and the Middle East working with leading Australian and International organisations across just about every sector.