For the first time, a radio station targeting the more than 650,000 Filipino expatriates and families in the UAE went live at 5am on Monday.
Named as Tag 91.1, a member of the Arabian Radio Network, the radio station that carries the tagline, “Mahal Ko, Music Ko” (I love my music), is broadcasting 24 hours daily to play the biggest original Filipino hits and airs news in Tagalog.
Matthew Johnson, head of marketing, told Khaleej Times that the radio station is the product of two long years of research directed at closing the gap that leaves the growing Filipino population without any broadcast channel for a long time. “This is the first radio station to target Filipinos ever launched in the Arab world.”
“We found out in our research that Filipinos are a distinct audience so adept with technology so we came up with a digital platform that brings the broadcast to them with dedicated iPhone, Android, Nokia and Blackberry apps, and a built-in player on all Samsung Smart TVs,” Johnson said.
Tag 91.1, he said, is the only radio station in the UAE that starts as early as 5am and ends its broadcast late at 2am with an initial three shows, and the fourth show to start next week. “We are targeting the age group of 25 to 34 years old. Over the last five years ARN has broadcast dedicated Filipino programming from midnight until 6am on Dubai Eye 103.8. With over 25,000 Facebook friends, ARN is responding to the huge demand from the Filipino community. This time by setting up a Filipino radio channel”
Operated by an all-Filipino broadcasters, Tag 91.1 has already signed 11 long term ads sponsorship. Its website, www.tag91.1.ae was launched on Sunday.
Johnson said that the most crucial for Tag 91.1 is for listeners to see the station is a very sleek and professional channel. “We sent Roy Lampera, our programme director, to Manila to recruit the best presenters in the top two radio stations there to make sure Tag 91.1 will have the world’s best Filipino presenters, best marketing and best program director to ensure its commercial success.