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CLIENT STORY

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VIRGIN RADIO

Overview

Virgin Radio is one of the largest radio brands in the UK with a broad selection of spin off sister stations coving all genres of music. They are a bold brand with big ideas and a network we've worked with over a number of years on various content projects for thier Pride spin off station. We've been fortunate that at least one of of the programmes we've made for them has been nominated in industry awards for the last 3 years.

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Objectives

We work with them each year on compelling content but we're going to highlight our recent documentary "Trans Truths". The objective from the client, Virgin Radio UK, was to create meaningful content that  would help change the narrative surrounding the trans community. The objective of the documentary was to bust the myths and misconceptions surrounding the trans community and give trans gender people a voice allowing them to give the truth about their lived experiences.

Approach

It was vital that the production shared lived experiences of people from the trans community and how negative misrepresentation has impacted their lives. We produced engaging and impactful content bringing in stories of people with first hand experiences to the soundtrack of powerful dance music, synonymous with the LGBTQ+ community and appealing to the Virgin Radio Pride target audience. Pulling the journey together was award winning radio & TV presenter Stephanie Hirst. She’s a huge advocate for the trans community, often sharing her journey in the public eye.  She was 100% engaged with the production from the beginning.

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CHALLENGES

1

Trans rights is a very polarising subject and we wanted to make sure we covered the subject with care and respect for the trans community.

2

With sensitive subject matter it was important to us that presenters, contributors and guests were given the space to express themselves freely in a safe environment. We needed to be careful with this subject matter.

3

Finding people that were willing to be involved was tough. Many people were passionate but didn't want to open themselves up to potential backlash for expressing their views.

PATH TO SUCCESS

01

We wanted powerful contributions so sort out important names from the community. From radio presenter Paris Munro, Cleo Madeleine from Gendered Intelligence, Virgin Radio Pride’s Shivani Dave and Grey Marlow from Queer Lit book shop in Manchester. They talked about the most common and harmful misconceptions they've encountered while exploring their gender identity making for a truly emotive listen.

02

Really getting to the heart of the issue was important so we created a live discussion with members of the public hosted by trans children’s charity Mermaids. We wanted to administer an environment for the listener that reflected what they might be thinking whilst listening, as opposed to just telling the audience about transgender people.

03

It garnered a lot of industry press and recognition and was nominated for 4 seperate awards, New York Festivals Best Documentary 2023, ARIAS  Best Documentary 2023, Audio Production Awards 2023 and Prolific North for Best Audio Production 2023.

PODCAST FEEDBACK

"Just hearing trans voices on the radio was monumental for me”
 
"I thought it was brilliant talking about a range of important topics instead of focusing on just one.”

"I think having Cis people there answering questions and highlighting misconceptions was really cool as I think it will have resonated more with non trans listeners”
 
"This has such an impact on me as a parent of a trans teenager. I shared it around one of the support groups I am in as it massively helped me unpack some of the struggles I have been having when understanding”
 
"In my work, I support a lot of trans children with their mental health and this was a very helpful resource to help me explain to other practitioners how we can do better!"

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