This week radio consultant Larry Gifford answers three new questions about radio: How do you accomplish aggressive show goals when you’re already short of time? How long’s a DJ demo? Do I have a blind spot?
Okay folks we all know networking is key in getting your next gig and advancing your radio career. However, there are right ways to network and wrong ways to network. This is an example of a wrong way. The conversation is real. The names and pictures have been changed to protect them from ridicule. Look at the time stamps.
This guy waited 90 minutes before assuming “Jane” was blowing him off. Poor form. Be patient. People are busy. The only person who considers you top priority is you. Sometimes it takes me a week to get back to someone. I wish it didn’t, but it’s reality.
Jane eventually did offer Dick some good advice.
The other day I was flipping through the dial and every one of the ten stations I flipped to was in commercial at the same time. Yesterday, I was air-checking a new morning show and between the commercials, traffic, weather, and canned commentaries I listened for 30 minutes without so much as a “good morning” from the new personality.
Tragic. Opportunity missed. Quarter-hours lost. Radio listener’s discouraged.
I listen to quite a bit of radio. I love radio. I should say I WANT to love radio, but I am increasingly dissatisfied with the return on my investment of time. Gang, we got a spot problem. There’s way too much clutter. We’re strangling content to squeeze blood from a turnip. Enough already.
I know I’m not the first to bring it up. I just watched a talk Jerry Del Colliano gave at Talkers 2014 and he brought it up too.
It was also a discussion in the #SRCHAT (Sports Radio Chat) on Twitter last night too.
A2: re: breaks per hour. Listening to a national show this morning and it felt like they were constantly going to break. No content. #srchat
— Owen Murphy (@SportRadioCoach) September 10, 2014
A2) too many breaks and not enough content kills all. Even Rush. Content is king #srchat
— Matt Perrault (@sportstalkmatt) September 10, 2014
— Brent Dougherty (@brentdougherty) September 10, 2014
That last one caught the attention of many on the chat. We are willingly sacrificing what’s best for the listening experience to accommodate a revenue model that was introduced in 1921.
Let that sink in.
The same year radio began to sell spots; World War I ended, Warren G. Harding was inaugurated as President, and KDKA created the first radio news room and broadcast the first ever baseball game on the radio.
Radio commericals have had a good run. But, the time has come to rethink the way we monetize our content. We don’t need to eliminate them altogether, but we need to value our platforms at a much higher rate, creatively collaborate on projects with advertisers and be willing to say “no” a whole lot more often to spots that don’t match our brand or meet our production quality standards.
(Insert a spit take from GMs and GSMs across the country)
The more we load up our hours with limitless units of :05s, :10s, :15s, :30s and still even :60s, the faster we’re pushing the next generation of radio listeners to competing audio content providers.
Think about this. The #1 thing in every research project radio has EVER conducted (hyperbole intended), commercials are what listeners react the most negatively too. And you know what we say? “Oh, they always say that. Just ignore it.”
I’m afraid we can’t ignore it anymore.
It’s going to take creativity, guts, leadership, ideation and innovation. Raise your hand if you have an idea. The solution isn’t going to likely arrive from the corner office. I’m looking at the board ops, producers, talent, reporters, street-teamers, and sales assistants. We need to start asking different people how we can solve this problem. So, I’m asking. Do YOU have any ideas?
- Co-branding opportunities / strategic partnerships (studio, phone lines, text, street team, events, etc.) I know this is happening in some stations already but usually it’s undervalued and tragically it’s often flighted-in instead of signing an annual.
- Multiplatform solutions or coordinated Brand Takeovers (audio, video, text, web, stream, podcast, app)
- XAPP Media – interactive online/mobile spots
- Creating exclusive online stations for partners co-branded with radio station featuring exclusive promotions/access/messaging for partners. (Listen to the Jones Honda Hits Music Channel on thisradiostation.com for your chance to win a trip to the Honda 500)
- Invest in great copy writers.
Add your ideas in the comments below or email me at email@example.com
This week radio programming consultant and talent coach Larry Gifford answers three questions about radio: How do I not sound stupid while networking? Should I worry about listeners complaining about line-up changes? Why don’t more sports stations talk WWE and UFC?
The Weekly Radio Stuff “Radio News Quiz.” Each week in the Radio Stuff podcast I offer up 10 questions about this week in radio news. You can listen to the quiz and answers here or read them below and click on links to stories to reveal the answers. Good Luck!
LET THE QUIZ BEGIN!
1. What superstar singer decided to release his first new song in a longtime on RADIO first this week? (A: Click here)
2. At one point, he was the most listened to morning man in the U-S, this week his Spanish language show on SiriusXM was canceled. Who is he? (A: Click here)
3. The Mike Calta Show debuted this week on 102.5 The Bone in Tampa. What controversial host did he replace? (A: Click here)
4. KIIS 106.5, the home of Australia’s Kyle & Jackie O, removed WHAT from the station website this week, but may face legal challenges anyway? (A: Click here)
5. For 32 years, he’s been David Letterman’s band leader. At the end of this year Letterman is retiring, but this man promises to keep doing his radio show “Day in Rock.” Who is he? (A: Click here)
6. Over Labor Day weekend, Radio Station WDRC-FM in Hartford gave away hundreds of dollars away in a unique promotion. No one knew that a radio station was involved, until it was over. What did they do? (A: Click here)
7, What lightning rod ESPN TV host left his ESPN Radio Show in New York to join SiriusXM’s Mad Dog Radio this week? (A: Click here)
8. Which interview conducted by Nick Grimshaw on BBC Radio 1 this week went viral? (A: Click here)
9. What former Playboy centerfold, who just married Donnie Wahlberg last weekend, now has her own show on SiriusXM titled “Dirty, Sexy, Funny?” (A: Click here)
10. For several minutes Scottish radio host Robin Galloway thought he was off air, he couldn’t hear his co-host and his producer feared for his job. What happened? (A: Click here)
How many did you get correct?
1-3 – A participation certificate
4-6 – A gold star!
7-8 – You’re pretty smart
9-10 – Way to go! (virtual pat on the back)