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Has Channel 4 forgotten what it was set up to do?

C4 threatens big job cuts as ad revenue plummets

Channel 4 has said it’s planning big job cuts as what’s now called “linear” TV revenue plummets – down 14% it says.

Boss Alex Mahon says it need to accelerate plans to become a “genuinely digital-first public service broadcaster” after the worst slump in traditional TV advertising since the financial crisis in 2008.

So another streamer then, which is ITV boss Carolyn McCall’s current mantra too. To be fair ITVX seems to be doing pretty well.

As for C4? Its two most successful programmes are Gogglebox (people watching TV from a sofa) and the Great British Bake-off, which it poached from the BBC. Hardly the groundbreaking stuff the channel was set up to provide. It has access to Walter Presents dramas but many of them are tucked away on streaming service All4, which few people currently watch. Surely it should give them an airing on the main channel first?

One thing C4 has achieved is plaudits for its in-house agency 4Creative, winner of numerous gongs including 2023 brand of the year in Campaign.

But recently much of its work, while undeniably “creative,” must leave audiences mystified. Like this for its Climate Change season.

Better, original main channel programmes and more directed marketing might help to alleviate some of the pain.

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