ATV in the Midlands provide a friendly service. The link between viewer and viewed is important. This two-way communication fosters a special kind of friendship between the home audience and the TV personality. Never before has the screen star been such a welcome guest in so many homes!
There is such a diversity of tastes and interests that one TV channel cannot guarantee to please all the people all the time. But it can — indeed it must — plan such a range of output that its fare will appeal to the majority and still provide a comprehensive service to meet special demands and preferences.
ATV in the Midlands are well aware of these responsibilities. Audience research has proved conclusively the measure of our success in fulfilling them.
Yet audience research is not the only source of assessment. Letters from viewers pour into our Birmingham offices each week.
A local programme has attracted as many as 36,000 letters. “Lunch Box” has had an average monthly mail of 20,000 letters from midday viewers.
We welcome them all as evidence of public interest. All are studied. Many add helpful suggestions to their encouragement. Most letters express appreciation: naturally we find these heartening. But we welcome all suggestions, especially those which are constructive.
The personal link with viewers is invaluable.
Audiences come to see shows produced at the Alpha Television Studios, and ATV personalities go out to “meet the people”. Such favourites as Noele Gordon, Jean Morton, Pat Cox, Pat Astley and Caroline Lloyd are family friends in thousands of Midland homes.
Invitations pour in asking them to attend social functions and to make “personal appearances”. They accept as many as they can. If they accepted them all they would have no time to appear on TV!
Their engagement lists are heavily booked for a year ahead with attendances at garden fetes, parties and social events of all kinds.