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WBZ/Boston (and other CBS O&Os?) to Rebrand Newscasts?


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On 7/26/2022 at 9:43 PM, newscopter7 said:

CBS oughta check in with the brain trust at Macy’s about how well standardization works. 

 

Yup. People love having some kind of local connection. Lazarus here used to have 10 or 12 stores in the area. Once they took the Lazarus names off the buildings and put Macy's on them, they've dwindled to three stores, soon to be two.

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On 7/10/2022 at 12:33 PM, GodfreyGR said:

Probably. I wish CCO hadn't ditched the "weather watcher whistle" for the CBS 5-note tone.

 

I still argue the "If it isn't broken..." argument. WCCO desperately needs a graphics refresh like all the CBS O&O's; but they have done a good job going with what they know works in the market- a set that has aged shockingly well for being 10-years old (minor updates, of course), iconic branding, and recognizable air staff. On the other side of town, KARE11 used to be #1 with that same formula, and now they're just happy to be in the Top 5 (as of Nov 2021).

I'm on the fence when it comes to CBS experimenting with that Now newscast concept on its Independent, CW, and My-Network-TV stations.

I came across an interesting video on YouTube of what could be described as a mock CBS O&O intro.

I doubt we'd be seeing this show up on CBS O&O stations.  I'll admit that it looks great and could easily pass for CBS O&O graphics and opening package.  We'll have to wait and see what CBS rolls out to its stations in the Fall.

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3 hours ago, DirtyHarry said:

Yup. People love having some kind of local connection. Lazarus here used to have 10 or 12 stores in the area. Once they took the Lazarus names off the buildings and put Macy's on them, they've dwindled to three stores, soon to be two.

I completely agree, and I would certainly hang on to local identities at the top-rated stations if I were running the joint. That said, Wendy McMahon isn’t exactly a stranger to this industry. I imagine that if CBS really is going full-Macy’s, she and the rest of the management team have taken all of this into account.

 

Local stations in Canada used to identify with channel numbers like their American counterparts. However, as the national networks in that country expanded their footprint, the local stations began identifying by their network, rather than “Channel X.” Even though leading stations like CFCF, CHAN, and CFTO dumped their longtime monikers, they still lead their respective markets, and they also contribute to the success of their networks’ national news operations.
 

If I had to guess, CBS concluded that at worst, standardizing their stations’ brands won’t change their current ratings positions. Granted, these moves would not be “innovations” or ratings game-changers by any means. KYW, WFOR, and WBBM aren’t going to shoot to first place because of a brand change, and it’s unlikely that KDKA, WCCO, and WJZ will drop to last. However, standardizing station identities could give a relatively weak national news brand (CBS News) a much-needed boost. And besides, with the growth of streaming, people don’t tune in to “Channel X” anymore. They tune to the network.

 

Will it work? Dumping established identities risks throwing away a station’s legacy, and established local stations usually help boost the national network (see WRAL.) However, if people are tuning into WJZ/KDKA/etc and turning off when the Evening News comes on, that doesn’t really help CBS. I highly doubt it will change anything at all on the local level, but there’s a chance it will improve the reputation and ratings of their national morning and evening news programs. Time will tell.

Edited by nycnewsjunkie
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That's not a "mock", it's an actual graphics package offered up by our very own @cxd7346. It is NOT the new O&O graphics.

 

While the package is well done, this thread is not the appropriate place to talk about it.

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  • 4 weeks later...
18 minutes ago, Georgie56 said:

Looks like we have our smoking gun, folks.

 

KCNC is rebranding as “CBS Colorado News”.

Kudos to everyone who called this even before the new websites rolled out.

 

Hopefully CBS’s rededication to investing in its O&Os goes beyond this name change and translates to better local journalism.

Edited by nycnewsjunkie
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There's a negative halo from network newscasts for some portion of the audience (this goes back decades...the whole 'network news doesn't represent my views' thing isn't new among some portion of the audience, just magnified these days). Beyond that the channel number / call letters are a bit of a firewall that also makes it feel more authentically local.

 

Eliminating the local station number / call letters, and using the exact network news name (CBS News) makes it all feel even less local, trusted for that segment of viewers. 

 

See in Pittsburgh how KDKA lags WTAE at 6pm but has a massive lead at 11. Some of the core KDKA viewers don't care much for the national CBS News outlet, preferring World News Tonight.  

 

I doubt this change would have passed the common sense test of Les Moonves. 

 

The press release for KCNC isn't even consistent. It calls it 'CBS News Colorado' upfront, then all the newscast titles are 'CBS Colorado News at XXX.' 

 

The former is much more network newscast tied with 'CBS News' as the exact phrase, the latter maintains some more local identity (keeping the 'CBS News' phrase out of the mix). 

Edited by sfomspphl
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18 minutes ago, sfomspphl said:

There's a negative halo from network newscasts for some portion of the audience (this goes back decades...the whole 'network news doesn't represent my views' thing isn't new among some portion of the audience, just magnified these days). Beyond that the channel number / call letters are a bit of a firewall that also makes it feel more authentically local.

 

Eliminating the local station number / call letters, and using the exact network news name (CBS News) makes it all feel even less local, trusted for that segment of viewers. 

 

See in Pittsburgh how KDKA lags WTAE at 6pm but has a massive lead at 11. Some of the core KDKA viewers don't care much for the national CBS News outlet, preferring World News Tonight.  

 

I doubt this change would have passed the common sense test of Les Moonves. 

 

The press release for KCNC isn't even consistent. It calls it 'CBS News Colorado' upfront, then all the newscast titles are 'CBS Colorado News at XXX.' 

 

The former is much more network newscast tied with 'CBS News' as the exact phrase, the latter maintains some more local identity (keeping the 'CBS News' phrase out of the mix). 

Thing is, given the damage David Friend, Peter Dunn, and the old management team at the CBS stations did, and the fact that there is a clear push toward unifying linear and streaming brands, it has to happen. There are also reasons why it can work at CBS, but not at the other networks. I’ll link to a post from @Samantha, who explained it best:

As for your point about local brands being more trustworthy than the network’s brand, I totally get it. If you asked me a few months ago, I would’ve agreed with your point and would’ve questioned why dumping local identities was even up for discussion (in fact, I did). Thing is, that trust deficit is a huge problem for the network, especially given its eternal ratings woes. In fact, it’s all the more reason for CBS to do what it’s doing.
 

Having trustworthy local news brands is great, but it means little if it doesn’t translate to success on the national level. By integrating the local stations with CBS News, the national news operation can benefit from the trust people already have in their local stations. It might sound like CBS News is trying to force its way into CBS-owned stations; in reality, it is the stations and their local news operations that are adding value to CBS News. The local station might feel less “local,” but over time, the national operation will feel much less alien to viewers.

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Didn't know where else to put this, but while browsing through some Detroit Now News clips (just for the hell of it), it appears that the local segments are now being done in-house instead of being outsourced from KTVT.

 

Shaina Humphries (as seen in the screenshot) was one of the recent hires for the upcoming CBS News Detroit.

Screenshot (32).png

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16 hours ago, nycnewsjunkie said:

Thing is, given the damage David Friend, Peter Dunn, and the old management team at the CBS stations did, and the fact that there is a clear push toward unifying linear and streaming brands, it has to happen. There are also reasons why it can work at CBS, but not at the other networks. I’ll link to a post from @Samantha, who explained it best:

As for your point about local brands being more trustworthy than the network’s brand, I totally get it. If you asked me a few months ago, I would’ve agreed with your point and would’ve questioned why dumping local identities was even up for discussion (in fact, I did). Thing is, that trust deficit is a huge problem for the network, especially given its eternal ratings woes. In fact, it’s all the more reason for CBS to do what it’s doing.
 

Having trustworthy local news brands is great, but it means little if it doesn’t translate to success on the national level. By integrating the local stations with CBS News, the national news operation can benefit from the trust people already have in their local stations. It might sound like CBS News is trying to force its way into CBS-owned stations; in reality, it is the stations and their local news operations that are adding value to CBS News. The local station might feel less “local,” but over time, the national operation will feel much less alien to viewers.

 

 

Ironically the CBS Evening News is going back to a more traditional and familiar broadcast presentation for older (core) viewers. 

 

These changes at the local level scream bland rerun local cable news like Spectrum or CLTV. Disconnected from the more familiar personality driven, urgency filled traditional affiliate news of yore. And “community journalism” sounds like marketing to what other journalists want as opposed to what viewers care about. 

 

If they want to shake things up and be different take a look at KUSI.

 

Manages to bring out the personalities of the talent, leverages Zoom/Skype heavily to expand the guest / story profile, adds a healthy dose of positive local events, interviews lots of politicians on things neighbors are talking about, is willing to prosecute a local issue for weeks or months. 

 

Difference is it understands its viewers and what they see / live with day to day vs what a journalist thinks they should see.

 

Sure the national political slant is off putting and some “experts” are borderline. 

 

But it’s a genuinely different approach to news vs the old days (despite the old set) that works on a shoestring and you don’t see it much elsewhere.

 

I was at first turned off by it but the upbeat personalities and stories really drew us in. 

 

Maybe you need Steve Cohen himself to pull it off and the San Diego sun attracts personable talent but it’s a genuinely differentiated product.

 

 

 

 

Edited by sfomspphl
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4 hours ago, DetroitTVNews said:

As of today, WWJ-TV has rebranded from CBS 62 to CBS Detroit, and First Forecast is now NEXT Weather.

I knew eventually WWJ would pick up the 'NEXT Weather' and return to the 'CBS Detroit' brand for the first time in 20 years. 

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5 hours ago, abric said:

I knew eventually WWJ would pick up the 'NEXT Weather' and return to the 'CBS Detroit' brand for the first time in 20 years. 

Actually its been the first time since January 2008, when they changed the brand from "CBS Detroit" to "WWJ-TV". Almost 15 years.

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9 hours ago, newsteam13 said:

 

RIP Eyewitness News (even CBS3 Eyewitness News) - the format which the founding station KYW gave birth to. 

Technically the first EWN station was what is now WKYC and they dropped it in 1965 when the FCC ordered the asset swap reversal between NBC and Westinghouse.

 

I know common interpretation has KYW “moving” back to Philadelphia but that was borne out of Westinghouse wanting to erase any connection to NBC ownership of 3 and 1060 as soon as possible. By stark contrast, NBC tried to play off the “KY” name with WKYC and acknowledged Westinghouse’s prior ownership in Cleveland.

Edited by Myron Falwell
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On 9/2/2022 at 3:49 PM, TheRolyPoly said:

 

It's still Eyewitness News on air... for now.

I mean, doesn’t CBS own the rights to the name? I would think they would still want to use it. But on the flip side, they also technically own the rights to Westinghouse, which they gladly license out. 

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