Interview with Federico Silvestri
General Manager 24 ORE System, Director of Radio 24 Division, Chief Executive Officer of 24 ORE Cultura (company that manages MUDEC and produces exhibitions for both Mudec and other museums such as Palazzo Reale) and 24 ORE Eventi.
Silvestri, 24 Ore System: “Companies should continue to communicate, not only to support the media that are at the forefront of this battle, but also in their interest, in order not to deplete the effects of the investments that have been made to date”
What is happening in this very hard phase for people and for the planet, and therefore also for publishers, consultants, brands? Federico Silvestri, General Manager of 24 ORE System, the concessionaire of the confindustria publishing group, analyzes the moment as follows: “There are forward-looking players in our industry who are continuing to work and are already planning the future to come.
And that’s what we’re trying to do too. We must all make a great effort to reinterpret and relaunch our challenges, it is the only key that will allow us to ride the change and recovery that will come “. From philosophy to practice, Silvestri has no doubts about the attitudes that it would be logical to follow: “Companies should continue to invest, not only to support the media that are at the forefront of this battle, but also in their interest, in order not to deplete investments which have so far been made. ” The reason is simple, according to the manager. “They have painstakingly built a heritage of notoriety and credibility, of valority, which must be kept alive with proper maintenance if you do not want to disperse a part of what has been created in these years. I understand – continues Silvestri – that we decide to stay in the countryside with a different pressure, but it makes no sense to disappear from the scene: continuity serves the entire system “.
There are many spenders who have turned off the taps. For Silvestri it is not entirely logical. “It is clear to everyone how in many cases the purchase impulse, in this dramatic phase, cannot be translated into practice. But there are many products – I think of cars for example – that presuppose a long and complex decision-making process in consumers, in which many aspects come into play and also much more time to decide. It makes sense to interact with them, reassure them, support them even in this dark phase, because the moment of recovery will come ”.
It is a very difficult context for everyone. “Some sectors are more affected than others, someone remains active, but some of the spenders who remain silent in communication are among those that generally rank among the high spenders and are driving forces for the entire advertising sector. Some brands – the manager summarizes – are not giving continuity to planning activities.
Others are in stalemate: even if they want to communicate, they are thinking about the contents, because the traditional one they have available, perhaps, is not adequate at the moment. Rethinking communication formats at a time like this is obviously not simple and the reaction cannot be timely. The situation is so critical: March has been fully hit by the crisis and in April it will be even more difficult. If there is no different evidence, even May will be equally complicated “.
Commercial policies appropriate at the moment. In support of small and medium-sized enterprises
What to do? “In this context, our trade policies do not want to have any dumping effect. But we try to build for the customers adequate communication tools at the moment, contemplating more accessible conditions. Because the difficulty is for everyone. And if on the one hand we ask companies not to disengage from communication, on the other hand we must be able to understand that the moment is difficult for them too and offer more encouraging options. We are developing, in particular, many offers profiled for small and medium enterprises, to allow maximum access not only to big spenders, but also to the fabric of companies in a world that is particularly dear to us and that we feel we represent, which we want to protect and accompany ”.
Silvestri has a large number of assignments and, therefore, constantly evolving problems to face. It is a complicated period, but in which the group feels they have an essential role to play. “The audience that recognizes us a fundamental role of reference in this phase has widened considerably. Moreover – continues the manager – when people are afraid and anxious about the future and need to understand what is really happening, they choose with good reason. We are all targeted by a stream of conflicting news, by many fake news, looming and cumbersome, dangerous if the topics they touch are health and health, the progress of contagion, the complex economic implications of this crisis. So many are looking for us as authoritative and verified banks ”.
A growing audience, looking for a solid anchorage
The offer system of the Sole 24 Ore is catalyzing a universe of users much greater than usual. “We note this – says the manager – from the newspaper’s dissemination data, but obviously and above all, from those that refer to digital use. In the first week after the government Dpcm, we grew by 100% compared to the previous one, in the second week – when the stock exchanges collapsed – we were first for the progress of the audience (+ 200%), and there is a remarkable development both free and pay consumption. We are also growing because our brands and platforms are an essential anchor for interpreting laws and decrees that follow one another. “
However, for Radio24, as for the other broadcasters in our scenario, listening to mobility guaranteed by the ‘drive time’, in the morning and in the afternoon, is missing. “Actually – replies the manager who is also Director of the Radio 24 Division – also on the consumption of radio, we have interesting results”. Silvestri Invites to “register with some reservations” the indication of common sense that has come from many of the managers of the media centers in this section.
Radio 24 is also doing public service
“If I cannot have data already processed and produced as confirmation, I can however testify to the remarkable surge in the ‘interactions’ that we are recording for Radio 24 every day, at all hours. Our feeling is that the habits of I listen. It is true, the numbers of certain time slots have perhaps dropped, certain peaks have flattened, especially the morning drive time; but we are experiencing a more intense and more dilated attention to our programming.
And the ‘involved’ feedback of our listeners suggests that there is a spread of consumption time throughout the day, but that there is also a multiplication of the devices used for listening. We, moreover, have many loyalty and identity appointments in schedule. Right now people are getting used to consuming the radio also on their mobile phones, tablets, PCs, smart speakers as well as the classic home appliance. Moreover, Radio24 is making public service, shifting the focus on the pandemic, trying to cover everything that happens minute by minute, involving the experts and also opening the debate to the spectators “.
Events and Culture. Digital continues
Silvestri is also CEO of 24 ORE Cultura, the company that manages MUDEC and produces exhibitions for both Mudec and other museums such as Palazzo Reale, and 24 ORE Eventi. “We have had to suspend a series of scheduled appointments in these months, but we are trying to convert at least part of our proposal. Events is a business that thrives on physicality, direct experience, meeting, but it is not unrealistic to set up alternative programming on digital platforms, with the maximum possible interaction. Using new technologies, we are developing a production line and digital and virtual formats that will become a stable aspect of our proposal even later, on the way out.
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