The Marketplace Is Forcing Radio To Reinvent

Traditional radio was clearly slow to get off the starting blocks to the new media ecosystem. Despite the lethargic start, the medium has managed to be much stronger than its PR would suggest. Radio has retained more of its traditional audience than any other legacy medium. And has a larger following than most social networks.

Traditional AM/FM terrestrial radio still retains its undiminished appeal with listeners ­– 91% of Americans ages 12 and older had listened to this form of radio each week, according to a 2015 study by Nielsen Media Research. Print and TV would kill for these numbers.

The challenge before you the radio operator is how to harness the power of this audience in a hyper-digital marketplace?

Listeners are driving changes to the Radio landscape through streaming, binge listening, time-shifting, social sharing, and creating and sharing their own content packages. In addition, advances in technology, content production, and the conversational economy have transformed the process of the listener and consumer choice.

The question is what have you done to keep up with these challenges?  If you would like to know how smart marketers are beginning to address the problem then you are in the right place.  To learn how radio operators can take full advantage of it join me on my webinar to find howit is being done right now.

You will learn how you can engage the connected consumer and maintain proprietary control of the results, unlike raw social networks can provide. Real-time market intelligence is the key to success in the midst of today’s media transformation. Now, you will be in control.

Let me tell you how you can do this in my webinar for Radio…

The answer is simple; know your listeners better than anyone else does. And doing it in a way that let’s them know that you do. That is the key to engagement and relationship. Radio is still the most intimate medium on the planet.

There is an approach to audience Intel that is more powerful that traditional focus groups, call-out, and surveys.

No new bright shiny object is more powerful than relationship and deep understanding. I want to show you the way to know your listeners and users better than any social media network can offer. It’s more powerful that traditional focus groups, call-out research, and digital surveys put together.

Don’t guess what to do next for your listeners…know that you know what to do next, all the time because your audience can tell you in real-time.

Let me show you how.

We have known about radio’s audience strength for decades. Radio has retained between 91 and 96% of its weekly audience over the past 30+ years. No other traditional medium has been able to match that performance. But radio’s problem is more about perception than reality. Radio has an earned media problem.

Unfortunately, most discussions about the state of media havesidestepped radio’s resilience, forecasted its demise, or ignored the medium altogether. When there is no perception of buzz about your product or favorable buzz, you have an Earned media issue. The lack of buzz around radio’s image has allowed its huge audience to be ignored by advertisers. The lack of Earned media drove revenue away from radio, not a lack of listeners.

Knowing your audience’s behavior and perceptions in real-time will help you bring that buzz back to your stations.

He who has the best “intel” still wins.

The problem radio has is its misuse of the third category of media I have been talking about, Earned media. Radio has allowed its historically strong connection to its audience (over 90% audience retention) to lull it to sleep regarding Earned media. You should learn from this mistake.

Ultimately these three types of media, Paid, Owned, and Earned media (POEM) work best together. Radio did not get that early on in this transformation to the digital world. Making the hard choices of what to include and what not to include is crucial – especially when budgets are tight. The good news is if you simply start by categorizing your media and identifying the right roles based on your objectives, then you are on the right path.

How do you know what is best for your audience?

Here are some high-level takeaways you should consider when developing your 2017 and 2018 interactive media strategy:

Conducting perceptual studies once or twice a year is just not enough to keep up with the lightening fast changes that go on in the hearts and minds of your listeners on a daily basis. A periodic temperature check was ok during the 1990’s but today 24 hours is like a lifetime for your audience. You need to be in touch all the time and in ways, public trends do not reveal. That’s how you stay ahead of the curve and your competition both on and off the dial.

Your brand’s identity should become your digital solar system well beyond you transmitter. The question is, how?

Create a solar system of owned media around a top set of avatars or P1 listeners and users is your first move.Owned media are thechannels you control even beyond your transmitter site. Your brand’s identity should become this solar system and not just your transmitter’s broadcast. There is fully-owned media (like your transmitter and website) and partially-owned media (like a Facebook fan page or Twitter account). Owned media creates brand portability but that is only part of the story now.

Yes, I know you have already accepted that its time for radio to extend its brand presence beyond its transmitter to online streaming, social networks, apps, and your website. But those areprimarilyone-way conversations.

The only two-way conversation you are having now is through social media. It’s not bad but you have zero proprietary control over the content flow.

A superior business intelligence strategy that you can afford is your key.

Radio must use social networks for entertainment and engagement but not for intelligence.Fortunately, there is a way to benefit from the advantages of social networksbut without giving up all control and having all of your mistakes bouncing around in viral perpetuity. This is why a superior business intelligence strategy is so important.

Budgets are being cut more and more each year while demanding more. And yet here is no margin for error when deciding what your audience wants to hear and what resources you really need to satisfy them. The ability to communicate directly with your audience, on continuous bases, will help solve this problem and avoid countless mistakes in positioning, content generation, promotions, talent and more. Unfortunately, the only reliable ways your audience can give you feedback are through infrequent perceptual studies, focus groups and call-out research.

Your audience’s behavior is much too fluid for periodic check-ups

For most stations, these research tools, with the exception of music call-out, are deployed for a few weeks a couple times a year. This is not nearly enough to keep up with the consistent state of change taking place with your audience’s opinions and behavior.

You don’t have a way for your audience to talk to you where you are in control of the conversation, but you should. Social media does not give you that control; it’s just the opposite.

Today our audience demands a two-way conversation so let’s give it to them. Once radio’s audience is able to talk back to their favorite stationin real-time and at digital speed, both publically and privately,you will know what you need to knowfor spot-on programming decisions, promotions, and messaging. That is how you re-create that Earned media buzz.

Let me show you a smart way to get this done.

Let me show you a smart way to get this done.

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