HOT 107 (CJNW-FM) Edmonton took the opportunity to make some good happen out of the “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” controversy this week, by playing the song non-stop to collect warm coats for those in need.
Following a Facebook poll that saw 7,000 HOT 107 followers vote 98 per cent in favour of adding the song to its Christmas playlist, the station decided to play the tune back-to-back on Wednesday morning until 107 coats had been collected for local charities The Mustard Seed, Lurana Shelter and the Youth Emergency Shelter.
“The idea was a team effort,” Chris Myers, PD for Harvard Broadcasting’s Edmonton stations, told Broadcast Dialogue. “After the news came out that CBC had decided to re-add the song to its playlists, our morning show did a poll on whether we should add it to our Christmas playlist, and the response was overwhelming. It was [morning show co-host] Lisa Evans, who decided to turn it into a positive story.”
While Myers said some of the staff thought it would take as long as 12 hours of playing the tune non-stop to reach their goal of 107 coats, that number was collected in under two hours. The station ended up playing the song back-to-back for four hours, starting at 6 a.m. Wednesday morning.
HOT 107 ultimately decided to extend the coat drive until 5 p.m. Friday. Promotions director Lacey Slater estimates 350 to 400 coats have come in, in addition to mittens, hats and scarves.
“We kind of lost track they were coming in so fast,” said Slater. “We can hardly keep up with the response.”
Subscribe Now – Free!
Broadcast Dialogue has been required reading in the Canadian broadcast media for 25 years. When you subscribe, you join a community of connected professionals from media and broadcast related sectors from across the country.
The Weekly Briefing from Broadcast Dialogue is delivered exclusively to subscribers by email every Thursday. It’s your link to critical industry news, timely people moves, and excellent career advancement opportunities.
Let’s get started right now.