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TrafficONE – Splits

Commercial break “splits” are when one programming stream is being delivered to two transmitters and each transmitter has its own daily advertising schedule. I haven’t seen many instances of this in the States, but it is becoming quite common now in the UK and Scandinavia where Music 1 / Traffecta is doing a rather interesting thing named “break balancing”.

Traffecta has the ability to ‘balance’ the content length of the commercial breaks on two or more transmitters so they will not necessarily have to always be a set-time. Everyone is familiar with satellite network commercial breaks. Most often, they are two minutes in length and the affiliate stations have to fill to the full 2:00 lest they rejoin the network to silence or into the middle of an in-progress network commercial. With break balancing, one station is set to be the ‘master’ and the commercial breaks it runs are matched in length on the others.

Example: A Pop station in Liverpool has two transmitters.  Transmitter A covers the north side of the metro, Transmitter B has the south side. The station formats three two-minute commercial breaks an hour, each set for a maximum of two minutes content.

If any spot break on Transmitter A is not sold-out, the Traffecta that schedules Transmitter B will adjust to match that Transmitter A content. So, if the 2:10pm break on Trans/A has just ninety seconds sold, then Traffecta at Trans/B will allow only ninety seconds of spots into its 2:10pm break.  Both transmitters flip back to music and entertainment at exactly the same time, with the spot breaks on the ‘slave’ station(s) always matching the commercial content of the ‘master’ station.

Talk with Steve or Neil at one of the M1 offices if you’d like to know more about this function.

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