Loose Women open to more than 'fluff'

After ten years on air, ITV's lunchtime chat show Loose Women has become more than just a platform for celebrities to plug books, films and exercise DVDs to bored housewives.

ITV's Loose Women
ITV's Loose Women

The formula of four interchangeable women confessing, giggling and gossiping about the day's big issues now attracts 1.5 million viewers. 'It is popular with housewives, students, pensioners, young mums and men at home during the day,' reports executive producer Karl Newton.

This means it is open to all types of PR pitches. 'Each story is judged on its own interest and topicality, so there is nothing we will not cover,' says Newton. The show aims to provide 'a woman's view on hot topics of the day', so as long as you can demonstrate that your story, product or celebrity will be of interest to a broadly female audience, it has a chance of being featured.

While Loose Women is not as hard-hitting as other current affairs shows, do not make the mistake of thinking the tone has to be pure fluff. Charity campaigns can gain valuable coverage on the programme, as PR agency IncrediBull found out when promoting The Children's Society's Hundreds and Thousands of Childhood Memories campaign.

PR group director Lishai Oz says she was delighted with the coverage: 'I could think of no better platform than four women laughing about childhood moments, sharing sombre stories, all the while conveying the charity's aims.'

Stories about men, including men's media and male viewpoints on the fairer sex, are also welcomed. Shine Communications managed to get men's mag Nuts' Women I Secretly Adore survey on the agenda - Loose Women presenter Jackie Brambles was number two on the list. 'It was outside Nuts' safety zone and showcased the men's mag as a fun brand in front of a different audience,' explains account executive David Slade.

That said, there is always space for celebrity interviews, but again they do not have to be female. The PR Office successfully pitched a string of popular British and Irish faces to the show. Comedians Alan Carr, Ricky Gervais and Dara O'Briain appeared on Loose Women at the end of last year. 'The format gives our clients an opportunity to experience a light-hearted interview,' says head of lifestyle and entertainment Katie Phillips.

And beyond the well-known faces there are unusual, humorous and often naughty products featured.

PR and management consultancy Media Bitch used the show's open-minded agenda to promote a vibrating sex toy in the shape of a rubber duck. 'Loose Women covers a variety of topics openly and we thought the product would make the team giggle,' says MD Nina Saini. 'Although they did keep calling it by the wrong name.'

When: Daily on ITV1, 12.30-1.30pm
Viewers: 1.5 million

Series editor: Emily Humphries
Executive producer: Karl Newton
Forward planner: Ben Fergie
Celebrity producer: Jared Mather
Email: firstname.lastname@itv.com


- What does Loose Women have to offer?

The team discusses topical news, personal issues, music and showbiz stories. There are always plenty of outspoken opinions, lively debates and laughs.

- Celebrity involvement?

Top celebrities join in the fun each day to face a few pertinent questions and liven things up with their own opinions.

- What sets Loose Women apart?

It is a woman's view of the world and the presenters discuss their personal lives as well as issues that affect everyone. There are not any other chat shows on at the same time as us.

- What contact do you have with PROs?

We work with PR professionals on future guests, surveys, advance reviews of DVDs, films and books. Series editor Emily Humphries makes the final decision about what makes it on to the show. Editorial feature pitches should be sent to forward planner Ben Fergie and celebrity guests go to celebrity producer Jared Mather.

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