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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Be Broadcast’s Mission Control Unveils Starmer’s Dominance in January’s Political Arena

Mission Control’s meticulous evaluation positions Keir Starmer as January’s predominant personality in UK broadcast media, eclipsing Rishi Sunak across a sweeping analysis of over 41,000 conversations. Starmer’s January commencement speech, delineating his aspirations and blueprint, was met with extensive commendation, overshadowing Sunak’s efforts to redirect attention by suggesting forthcoming general election timelines.

Sunak’s approaches, particularly concerning the ‘stopping the boats’ initiative and the Rwanda referendum, encountered significant obstacles and internal disapproval, detrimentally impacting his depiction in the media. Despite Sunak’s more extensive media footprint, Starmer’s calculated retorts and concentration on national concerns like the ban on ‘Zombie Knives’ have substantially amplified his interaction and prominence, according to Be Broadcast’s Mission Control’s scrutiny.

A thorough investigation by Be Broadcast’s Mission Control, the analytical branch of Be Broadcast, has designated Keir Starmer as the principal figure in January’s broadcast media, overshadowing Rishi Sunak following an extensive review of over 41,000 dialogues within the UK.

At the onset of January, Starmer’s proclamation, articulating his targets and vision, was universally lauded, fostering a positive perception of his leadership. This accolade was momentarily contested when Sunak intimated a potential general election in the latter part of 2024, endeavouring to divert the media’s gaze from Starmer’s favourable reception.

However, Sunak’s bid to redirect media focus was unsuccessful. Starmer’s retort, lambasting Sunak for ‘squatting’ in power, not only recaptured the media limelight but also underscored the adverse repercussions of Sunak’s strategy.

The report additionally outlines Sunak’s predicaments, especially the Rwanda referendum and strategy, election tactics, and the UK’s engagement in airstrikes in Yemen, as key points of contention.

Particularly, Sunak’s January was overshadowed by his chief policy of ‘stopping the boats’ and the Rwanda referendum, which dominated his media narrative. Criticism from his own party members, notably from Sir Simon Clarke, led to a largely negative portrayal in the media.

‘Stopping the boats’ remained the focal point of Sunak’s policy discourse in media discussions, with scant attention to other policy areas.

Simultaneously, Starmer endeavoured to steer the conversation towards national issues, such as his initiative to outlaw ‘Zombie Knives’. However, this focus was also overshadowed by Sir Simon Clarke’s political manoeuvres, underscoring the significant influence of internal party dynamics on public policy dialogue.

Principal Insights from the Mission Control Analysis:

  • Starmer’s Broadcast Share of Voice: Keir Starmer witnessed a 46% boost in his broadcast share of voice from December to January, signifying a marked increase in interaction and visibility. Nonetheless, he continues to lag behind Rishi Sunak’s overall share of voice, illustrating Sunak’s broader media reach.
  • Media Correction Implications for Sunak: A media correction pertaining to Rishi Sunak’s assertions about resolving the migration backlog, extensively scrutinised by various channels, led to a one-point reduction for Sunak. This correction accentuates the emphasis on the precision and dependability of public pronouncements by political figures.
  • Personality as a Central Issue: The analysis spotlights the leaders’ personalities as a significant point of debate, mirroring a wider discourse on leadership styles and public charisma in the current political milieu.

A significant segment of the political dialogue transpired on UK regional radio channels. Remarkably, neither Starmer nor Sunak have actively engaged in these discussions, forgoing an opportunity to directly interact with the audience.

The leading media entities propelling the discussions about the political leaders were identified as GB News, Times Radio, LBC London, and TalkTV. These outlets played a vital role in sculpting the media narrative and shaping public perceptions of both leaders.

Throughout the month, Sunak was portrayed as prudent and tactical, concentrating on managing his party’s complexities and national policy debates. Conversely, Starmer was depicted as analytical and reactive, particularly towards Sunak’s leadership and decisions, signifying a lively strategic interplay between the opposition and the government.

The media frequently highlighted both leaders’ apparent lack of charm, often comparing them unfavourably to the charismatic nature of past Prime Ministers like Boris Johnson.

In December, multiple media corrections, mainly concerning taxation policy, stressed the importance of accuracy in political declarations. Notably, Sunak faced corrections regarding claims about resolving the immigration backlog, emphasizing the significance of credibility in policy achievements.

Sunak’s media image frequently associated him negatively with former Conservative Prime Ministers, while Starmer was more often linked positively or neutrally with his Shadow Cabinet.

As the election draws near, the absence of explicit policies from either side has resulted in limited policy-centric media coverage. Instead, the discourse has predominantly revolved around the leaders’ personalities, leading to a character-driven political analysis due to the lack of comprehensive policy debates.

Josh Wheeler, Founder of Be Broadcast, remarked on the analysis: “Broadcast media provides a distinctive avenue to influence voters’ hearts and minds. While Starmer took the lead in January, it’s essential for both leaders to perfect their approach to engaging with the public. This analysis not only underscores Starmer’s efficacy in January but also underlines the strategic adjustments both parties need to make to more effectively connect with the electorate.”

This in-depth analysis from Be Broadcast’s Mission Control highlights the dynamic interplay between political strategies and media narratives, offering critical insights into the changing political landscape as the UK edges closer to a pivotal electoral juncture.

What Is Mission Control?

Be Broadcast’s Mission Control, equips brands with pivotal insights into broadcast news, enabling better media engagement and strategic brand growth.

By monitoring broadcaster reactions and discussions about brands, it allows for timely and informed responses to developing crises. Mission Control offers comprehensive monitoring of competitor brands and the media environment, helping to craft data-driven strategies for success.

This instrument not only tracks 223 UK broadcast channels continuously but also translates broadcast data into practical insights, acting as a strategic guide for brand achievement.

In this series, Mission Control assesses how Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer fare each month in the lead-up to the General Election.


  • Proactive Peak Initiative (1 Point): Allocated for instances where the individual assumes a leading role in a situation, demonstrating proactive and influential engagement.
  • Positive Reactive Response (1 Point): Bestowed for effective and positive reactions to external events or circumstances, showcasing adaptability and resilience.
  • Volume of Engagement (1 Point): Granted for the aggregate number of mentions or engagements, reflecting the individual’s prominence in the discourse.
  • Dominance in Share of Voice (1 Point): Recognised for attaining a substantial part of the overall conversation, indicating a strong presence and influence.
  • Increment in Share of Voice (1 Point): Conferred for achieving a 10% rise in share of voice compared to the previous month, denoting growing influence and enhanced engagement in the media sphere.
  • Positive Sentiment Balance (Up to 2 Points): Up to two points can be awarded for accumulating five positive percentage points, indicative of a positive reception.
  • Personality Impact (1 Point): Given for instances where the individual’s personal characteristics or personality significantly shape the narrative or public perception.
  • Accuracy and Media Corrections (Deduct up to 1 Point): Points are deducted for instances where media corrections are issued, reflecting on the accuracy and reliability of the individual’s statements or actions.


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