That’s a problem because everything we do in radio – build cume, expand quarter hour listening, focus on P1s – is based on the simple idea that if a station plays the most popular songs, the audience will keep listening.
In fact, programmers believe if you stop djs and air personalities from talking, ratings will go up (and because of PPM methodology, it is true).
But listeners love really good radio personalities.
We even have this notion that if we run 8 minutes of commercials twice an hour it’s okay because the audience will check back in.
That’s like tempting them to seek another hit of dopamine at one of their many other digital choices.
2017 is the year of radio revenue challenges – make no mistake about it – and we’re focused like a laser on it.
But let’s not lose sight of how the audience has already changed and radio has not.
This is why we do a refresh every year on topics that are trending for radio stations.
And shorter attention spans that are killing our chances for success with this 18-34 demographic that advertisers desire.
- They don’t listen to songs all the way through even the ones that they like. That’s the Pandora/Spotify influence. It’s pure adrenaline that listeners seek when they are listening to music. Even playing the hits is no longer enough, but there is an alternative made for radio but time is short.
- There are ways to make it more difficult for 18-34’s to tune out the music they like. One way is how we present it and that will be front and center at my Philly conference in about a week.
- Another way is to let them tune out and keep trying to draw them back but that can prove to be difficult and costly because some kind of a bribe may be necessary. Still, it’s one of your options.
- One area we will explore is “music discovery”. 18-34’s are really into that – again, a byproduct of streaming music services and music on-demand that they grew up with. You are going to learn a way to feed 18-34’s the music discovery they want without losing the hit appeal of your station.
There is no problem the radio industry cannot confront and turn into an advantage.
But great ideas like these are useless without a game plan forward and you’ll get that in Philly next week.
Invest one day – Wednesday April 5 – and you will come away with focused ideas and strategies on revenue recovery, making 18-34’s stay tuned and the following subjects. It’s tax-deductible, check with your accountant: