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HLN Brand Repositioning


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As I've said before (including previously in this thread), I don't think the solution for HLN is as simple as saying "just throw CNNI on HLN." Aside from contract issues with the cable carriers, putting CNNI side-by-side with CNN US would be a lot of overlap. Yes, CNNI has some really bright spots (Hala Gorani's show, the Atlanta news blocks overnight and early evening), but there's also a lot of CNN US on CNNI now. CNNI simulcasts an hour of New Day, Wolf, AC360, and Don Lemon. There's "The State of America" with Kate Baldouan, which is produced exclusively for CNNI but otherwise would fit right in with CNN US' endless roster of talking heads. Then there's also the problem of how CNNI routinely dumps out everything for a CNN US simulcast whenever there's anything mildly big going on involving the US.

 

Putting CNNI content onto CNN US would make a lot more sense. They've made Hala Gorani into the biggest star on there not named Christiane Amanpour, and I'm still shocked they haven't given her more exposure to US audiences. Also, they need to go back to simulcasting CNNI overnight fulltime, especially the edition of Newsroom from LA which is also better suited to CNN US than it is to CNNI.

 

After seeing them attempt multiple different strategies for HLN, I think what they have now is probably about right — an also-ran domestic news channel on a shoestring budget, forgettable talent, and not much to offer beyond a niche in the morning.

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That may be nice in theory but even if they did that, I'd bet the pressures of the spotlight of being on CNN would slowly change the show into what we have now on CNN. The format of New Day right now

I've said it once and I'll say it a thousand times over, the only thing saving HLN is Morning Express with Robin Meade. Her show needs to be moved over directly to CNN and New Day needs to be cancelle

Just like their ✨b r i l l i a n t✨branding of their LTE network as "5G E"...(I'm not going to hold my breath, lest it be a full time Adult Swim channel...but I digress.)

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I wonder if HLN would work a revived CourtTV

They actually tried that a decade ago with Vinnie Poltain, Nancy Grace, et. al.

 

The problem was, Nancy’s rather unhealthy obsession/persecution of “Tot Mom” - on a daily basis for well over a year - resulted in Nancy becoming an absolute tone-deaf laughingstock when the verdict didn’t go her way. Then they followed that up with the George Zimmerman saturation coverage, which annihilated any semblance of credibility HLN had when the verdict again didn’t go their way.

 

In that sense, you couldn’t blame the higher-ups for wanting to try something different. Problem was, their Plan B - “social media news” - should have been laughed out of the CNN board rooms the second it was pitched.

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Should never have re-branded the original court tv

Court TV was more of a niche format than the original Headline News was.

 

There was a reason why that channel drifted to low-brow reality junk and is only relevant for one weekend in March.

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My guess is that it's taking the shitty reality TV bullet for the team so it doesn't junk up TBS or TNT or Cartoon Network (not that they haven't tried). Though they do at least seem to be trying harder with it now.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Not sure if this was mentioned previously, but I was watching Morning Express this morning and the bug was rotating with this:

 

IMG_20180403_084652.jpg

 

There was also an ID card that went to commerical break where "Headline News" emerged from the logo in the middle of the screen. This is the first time they've called themselves this in years isn't it?

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Not sure if this was mentioned previously, but I was watching Morning Express this morning and the bug was rotating with this:

 

IMG_20180403_084652.jpg

 

There was also an ID card that went to commerical break where "Headline News" emerged from the logo in the middle of the screen. This is the first time they've called themselves this in years isn't it?

Aside from using the name in copyright notices for trademark maintenance purposes, it's the first time in nearly a decade.

 

Either CNN wants to rebuild actual rolling news blocks on the network, or this is further evidence that they just have absolutely no clue what to do with the channel. I'm betting on the latter.

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Not sure if this was mentioned previously, but I was watching Morning Express this morning and the bug was rotating with this:

 

IMG_20180403_084652.jpg

 

There was also an ID card that went to commercial break where "Headline News" emerged from the logo in the middle of the screen. This is the first time they've called themselves this in years isn't it?

 

This has been done for weeks now as they're trying to bring that name back, though I know its still not the same.

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Yeah, I kinda wish that if they did try to reposition HLN as an actual news network, they bring back the color-coded Watches they used from 1999 until the 2001 revamp-- it was a pretty cool gimmick that reinforced that Headline News didn't stop, they just rotated anchors and personnel. Sadly not much footage of this era is around, here's what I could dig up:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=id=bc-9V8S8dSE

 

 

 

 

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Is the channel even financially sustainable?

 

If it isn't, wouldn't it make sense to simply shut it down and roll any elements worth keeping (specific anchors and shows) into the main channel?

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Is the channel even financially sustainable?

 

If it isn't, wouldn't it make sense to simply shut it down and roll any elements worth keeping (specific anchors and shows) into the main channel?

 

Here's the way I see it, there's obviously a reason why national news channels are still around even though we're in a digital age where I can get my news anytime even right now.

 

CNN as of the last few years (particularly under Jeff Zucker, former turmultuous NBC head) has become something akin to MSNBC on steroids while MSNBC has started floating back toward the middle in some of its daytime parts (something CNN would have done). They have found their niche in talking about President Trump around 97% of a broadcast day and not steering clear of the narrative. Trump could take a dump and cue the "This is CNN. BREAKING NEWS." bumper for a panel commentary about it and how the smell is destroying the ozone layer.

 

Like CNN and to a lesser extent MSNBC, you have FOX News who downplays themselves as not part of the fake news media, religiously, 24/7, and knows with a drop of a hat they can get the President to come on for an exclusive interview. However, like CNN and MSNBC, Fox has the narrative of being pro-gun, pro-life, pro-Republican and does not steer clear of the narrative. Take the previous example of President Trump taking a dump. FOX News will make everyone believe that this is what everyone should be doing, the President's dump is a magical turd that will unclog the aging sewer infrastructure and won't contribute to the national debt. However, if Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi even try to sit down on a toilet, you can expect the national debt to rise another $20 trillion and the Democrats to shut down the government.

 

So here's my point, CNN has found their niche as being largely anti-Trump, FOX has found their niche as being largely pro-Trump, MSNBC tries to take a left-leaning middle road (except in the case of Rachel Maddow and some of their nighttime left-extremists).

 

Then you have HLN. It's not a business channel like CNBC or FOX Business who have that niche. It's not a news channel or a political commentary outlet. HLN has taken the largest hit from the internet and smartphones. Let's go back a few years with Headline Prime for example. Let's run a showbiz talk show, Nancy Grace, and conservative nutjob Glenn Beck and see if it sticks. It didn't. Step forward a few years and HLN decides to overhaul to be a hyper-social social media-focused news network. It flopped.

 

So then, they went back to basics. All the experiments failed, but what did work for them was the rolling news coverage. Think about Morning Express and Weekend Express. You can tape two hours of non-time sensitive news and replay it for six hours. It was the Headline News mantra, the format that started it all. Despite blowing up the channel and doing strange things with the primetime lineup and the 100 hours of Forensic Files, the morning and weekend news block programming is the one thing that remained the same.

 

So now we're in 2018. Clearly CNN isn't selling separate advertising for HLN anymore, it's likely a package deal for both networks (more bang for your buck really, two channels and twice the ad time). HLN is now more than ever fighting to stay relevant. After years of failed trysts under the HLN name (News and Views, anyone), they decide to rotate the old Headline News name back into play, the last time really anything for the network actually worked.

 

Say what you want about the Erica Hill, Ashleigh Banfield, Michaela, Carol Costello and S.E. Cupp ventures, but the format of the shows is practically refreshing all things considered this is the same network that would run 100 hours of Forensic Files in a row, need I say more?

 

So now let's focus on traditional news programs to fill the void of the daily national news that isn't being covered while CNN critiques what the President ate for breakfast. Let's focus on the true crime stuff that arguably did well for the network when Nancy Grace was there and the coverage of court trials like Casey Anthony and all that. Let's find a way to reinvent the rotating news wheel format. What you get is what HLN is trying to do now, go back to basics but be just different enough to remain relevant in this day and age. There is no on-screen ticker, there is no weather and stock boxes, and the reason for that is because there is no need for it anymore. Those watching Morning Express or what have you are also looking at their phones for the weather, at their phones for the stock quotes. The need for HLN isn't there, but the novelty of it is still very much a need.

 

Look at the UK and Canada with their 24 hour news channels. CP24 in Toronto reminds me of the 2003-2004 HLN with the information overload on the screen. It's not necessary or even needed anymore in this day in age, but it's a novelty and people love novelties. It's the same when Nickelodeon decided to do a 90s Nick block and the internet and millennials exploded. It's a novelty, and that right there goes back to my original point of finding a niche. The other cable news nets have one, HLN doesn't. What HLN does have though is a novelty quality and as long as the novelty is there and the nostalgic feeling you get when you watch is there, then there's your niche.

 

It's the old adage of "Don't try to be something that you aren't." HLN finally realizes this after many failed attempts and is trying to bank off the novelty of the channel while just being different enough to hope to make a difference.

 

Will the old Headline News as we know it return? Absolutely not. But if the name is coming back, it's a step in the right direction for the channel.

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If CNN Headline News (yes, I'm using that name) comes back to the pre-2005 format, I'll be watching again.

 

For now, I got CBSN (on my Roku) and Newsy (on Cox Cable 276) to fill me up with the latest news.

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If CNN Headline News (yes, I'm using that name) comes back to the pre-2005 format, I'll be watching again.

 

For now, I got CBSN (on my Roku) and Newsy (on Cox Cable 276) to fill me up with the latest news.

OrthenetworkcouldcomebacktoitsverybeginingasCNN2whereeveryanchorwastalkingspeedyquicklikethis. Iwouldreallyliketoseetheanchorstalkingnonstopuntiltheyrunoutofbreath.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Here's the way I see it, there's obviously a reason why national news channels are still around even though we're in a digital age where I can get my news anytime even right now.

 

CNN as of the last few years (particularly under Jeff Zucker, former turmultuous NBC head) has become something akin to MSNBC on steroids while MSNBC has started floating back toward the middle in some of its daytime parts (something CNN would have done). They have found their niche in talking about President Trump around 97% of a broadcast day and not steering clear of the narrative. Trump could take a dump and cue the "This is CNN. BREAKING NEWS." bumper for a panel commentary about it and how the smell is destroying the ozone layer.

 

Like CNN and to a lesser extent MSNBC, you have FOX News who downplays themselves as not part of the fake news media, religiously, 24/7, and knows with a drop of a hat they can get the President to come on for an exclusive interview. However, like CNN and MSNBC, Fox has the narrative of being pro-gun, pro-life, pro-Republican and does not steer clear of the narrative. Take the previous example of President Trump taking a dump. FOX News will make everyone believe that this is what everyone should be doing, the President's dump is a magical turd that will unclog the aging sewer infrastructure and won't contribute to the national debt. However, if Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi even try to sit down on a toilet, you can expect the national debt to rise another $20 trillion and the Democrats to shut down the government.

 

So here's my point, CNN has found their niche as being largely anti-Trump, FOX has found their niche as being largely pro-Trump, MSNBC tries to take a left-leaning middle road (except in the case of Rachel Maddow and some of their nighttime left-extremists).

 

Then you have HLN. It's not a business channel like CNBC or FOX Business who have that niche. It's not a news channel or a political commentary outlet. HLN has taken the largest hit from the internet and smartphones. Let's go back a few years with Headline Prime for example. Let's run a showbiz talk show, Nancy Grace, and conservative nutjob Glenn Beck and see if it sticks. It didn't. Step forward a few years and HLN decides to overhaul to be a hyper-social social media-focused news network. It flopped.

 

So then, they went back to basics. All the experiments failed, but what did work for them was the rolling news coverage. Think about Morning Express and Weekend Express. You can tape two hours of non-time sensitive news and replay it for six hours. It was the Headline News mantra, the format that started it all. Despite blowing up the channel and doing strange things with the primetime lineup and the 100 hours of Forensic Files, the morning and weekend news block programming is the one thing that remained the same.

 

So now we're in 2018. Clearly CNN isn't selling separate advertising for HLN anymore, it's likely a package deal for both networks (more bang for your buck really, two channels and twice the ad time). HLN is now more than ever fighting to stay relevant. After years of failed trysts under the HLN name (News and Views, anyone), they decide to rotate the old Headline News name back into play, the last time really anything for the network actually worked.

 

Say what you want about the Erica Hill, Ashleigh Banfield, Michaela, Carol Costello and S.E. Cupp ventures, but the format of the shows is practically refreshing all things considered this is the same network that would run 100 hours of Forensic Files in a row, need I say more?

 

So now let's focus on traditional news programs to fill the void of the daily national news that isn't being covered while CNN critiques what the President ate for breakfast. Let's focus on the true crime stuff that arguably did well for the network when Nancy Grace was there and the coverage of court trials like Casey Anthony and all that. Let's find a way to reinvent the rotating news wheel format. What you get is what HLN is trying to do now, go back to basics but be just different enough to remain relevant in this day and age. There is no on-screen ticker, there is no weather and stock boxes, and the reason for that is because there is no need for it anymore. Those watching Morning Express or what have you are also looking at their phones for the weather, at their phones for the stock quotes. The need for HLN isn't there, but the novelty of it is still very much a need.

 

Look at the UK and Canada with their 24 hour news channels. CP24 in Toronto reminds me of the 2003-2004 HLN with the information overload on the screen. It's not necessary or even needed anymore in this day in age, but it's a novelty and people love novelties. It's the same when Nickelodeon decided to do a 90s Nick block and the internet and millennials exploded. It's a novelty, and that right there goes back to my original point of finding a niche. The other cable news nets have one, HLN doesn't. What HLN does have though is a novelty quality and as long as the novelty is there and the nostalgic feeling you get when you watch is there, then there's your niche.

 

It's the old adage of "Don't try to be something that you aren't." HLN finally realizes this after many failed attempts and is trying to bank off the novelty of the channel while just being different enough to hope to make a difference.

 

Will the old Headline News as we know it return? Absolutely not. But if the name is coming back, it's a step in the right direction for the channel.

If that was the case, that the Morning/Weekend Express jukebox format is enough to distinguish the network outside of everything else, then why not go the All News Channel route and just do that format around the clock? Jukeboxed newscasts in a non-linear format that’s updated only when necessary. Simple, cheap, and as far away from the current dumpster fire CNN is now.

 

Evergreen news content at least has more value than moldy oldie reruns of Forensics Files, and CNN has to know this. But their recalcitrance to do anything but the bare minimum affirms the belief that they don’t want to bother with a superfluous cable channel space that has guaranteed universal coverage and that no cable provider will threaten to drop.

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  • 5 months later...
So SE Cupp was moved to weekends on CNN and apparently no one noticed.

 

Meanwhile, HLN replaced her show with ... even more Forensic Files, because of course they did.

 

They just don’t want to try anymore lol

 

Hey, I don't mind it. I LOVE Forensic Files. Make it the Forensic Files network for all I care, apparently those reruns are the only thing keeping HLN above water, says a lot that those reruns are the only things making a blip in the ratings. Peter Thomas' soothing voice puts me to sleep at night, almost to the point that I can't fall asleep unless I hear "Sentenced to life in prison... with... no possibility of parole..."

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So SE Cupp was moved to weekends on CNN and apparently no one noticed.

 

Meanwhile, HLN replaced her show with ... even more Forensic Files, because of course they did.

They just don’t want to try anymore lol

 

I hope they extend Michaela by 1 hour and just replay the final hour like they do on MXP, cheap and easy way of filling that hour. Headline News just hired a reporter from Miami and she is expected to fil in on the weekends, I hope it leads to additional news programming on the weekends.

 

When you say "they don't want to try anymore" I have to disagree, HLN has great leadership with great ideas. Brian Bell (VP of Operations) and Stephanie Todd (VP of Programming) both based in Atlanta are trying, its the people above them such as Jeff Zucker and Ken Jautz who won't let HLN complete, hell even start its plan to become relevant again. I hope the leaders at WarnerMedia just turn owner back over to Turner so something successful can actually be done.

 

S.E Cupp moving to CNN was the plan all along, and how she moved to CNN didn't seem to help her likability at the organization, it screwed over HLN and apparently, they had little notice.

 

Headline News needs to focus on the experience of its anchors and the fact that they aren't based in NYC, they need to solely report on headlines and in-depth local stories and not constant arguing. If people knew a channel like that existed HLN would be competitive, they need to go on a marketing spree and finalize there lineup and plans and be allowed to execute them. I want Headline News to succeed.

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Until Zucker and Jautz get the heave-ho, HLN will be the stillborn news network that is totally underutilized and never given any tools to be remotely successful, forever overshadowed by the three-ring circus that they turned CNN into.

 

That’s the problem. It doesn’t matter who wants to give some sort of an effort when Zucker doesn’t want it to happen. That is dysfunction at its finest. At some point, those few talented people left over there will give up and flee Zucker’s ineptitude for greener pastures... and there will be nothing left but Forensic Files reruns.

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  • 4 weeks later...
Across America with Carol Costello: GONE

Crime and Justice with Ashleigh Banfield: GONE

MichaeLA: GONE

https://www.mediaite.com/tv/exclusive-hln-axing-most-live-shows-including-carol-costello-and-ashleigh-banfield/amp/?__twitter_impression=true

"Taped programming"? Because we really need more Forensic Files on HLN, don't we (!)

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Why don't they just drop the 'HLN' brand and make CNN Business?

 

Because that's not the point. HLN at its last revamp was supposed to be the non-political news channel. The problem is that seemingly all news has become political in this environment.

 

I wonder if the new CNN Business, as tech-focused as it is, is even a good fit for linear TV, quite honestly.

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