(AFP) – Air Zen, a positive news radio station, which wants to “help the French to live better”, will start its programs next Tuesday, during the nationwide deployment of digital terrestrial radio, DAB +, the equivalent TNT radio.
It is part, with BFM Radio (radio version of BFMTV) and Skyrock Klassics, of the newcomers of the digital radio landscape. These three stations will not have an FM frequency (the band is completely saturated) unlike the 22 other older radios (like Europe 1, France Inter, RMC, etc.). The latter will also benefit from the deployment throughout France of this new technology which can be listened to online.
DAB + passes over the airwaves like FM but offers better sound, with continuity of reception, especially when on the move.
At Air Zen, the slogan could be summed up as follows: “boost the morale of the French”, with solution journalism and programs devoted to well-being.
“Studies show that more and more French people are in a depressive state, difficult on the psychological level. We wanted to propose a 100% positive project”, explains, in an interview with AFP, Anne-Marie de Roofer, president and founder of Air Zen radio.
The Air Zen management team is part of the Mediameeting group, an audio media operator founded in January 2004, which produces radio stations and podcasts for companies and communities.
A little more than two thirds of the programs will be “talk” programs, 30% will be devoted to music, from the 60s to the present day.
– Little advertising, subscriptions –
“We will deal with general information with solution journalism. A subject will be dealt with, for example on the climate, mobility, because we will have identified solutions,” continues Ms. de Couvreur. On the other hand, “Afghanistan where unfortunately we have no solutions to propose, we will not talk about it”.
Among the appointments of the week, a program on yoga presented by the Canadian singer Natasha St-Pier, every Friday from 7 to 8 p.m.
Air Zen’s business model is original, leaving little room for advertising: a maximum of four minutes per hour, compared to 14 on average for private radio stations.
To compensate for the lack of income, Air Zen will offer its listeners to subscribe “for an amount less than 5 euros per month”. They will have access to ad-free content and a range of additional products (exclusive premium content, webinars and podcasts).
This model called + freemium + which combines a free offer with paid supplements (such as Canal + for example) has never been used in France by a radio, according to the CSA, audiovisual policeman. This type of “business model” is however dominant in the online games market.
At a time when audiences are eroding, Air Zen intends to find a place in the radio landscape. “We hope to achieve 1% national audience in two years,” said Ms. de Couvreur.
According to her, listeners will be more women, as well as “active, in the broadest sense of the term, and seniors”.