Ignore 75 Million Baby Boomers For 95 Million Millennials?

The last Baby Boomer turned 50 two months ago.

There are 75 million Baby Boomers still available to listen to the radio and they have money to spend on products advertisers sell.

So do you get younger and blow off the things Boomers love about radio for the very different things that appeal to 95 million Millennials, the largest generation ever born?

There is a way to engage younger audiences and simultaneously serve older audiences who have been the staple of the radio industry.

Ironically, radio’s big mistake is to program to Baby Boomers at the expense of Millennials.

When creating content in the digital age, it is always preferable to create content for the changemakers who are in fact the younger audience – in this case, Millennials.

That’s what Steve Jobs did.

He designed his popular Apple products for very young consumers but every one of their devices turned out to also be a hit and a financial success with older consumers.

The secret: Aim young first, but do the right things – that’s so very important. Older generations adopt later.

I’ve isolated 7 strategies that can easily be implemented by any radio station, any format in any market and I’m going to get into this at my Philly conference 1 week from now.

The problem well-meaning radio stations have been having with maintaining their money demos and acquiring new listeners is that they are afraid to alienate older listeners.

As you will see, these concepts – the ones Millennials value most – will never alienate Baby Boomers although oddly enough some of the things Baby Boomers still want from radio will drive Millennials away.

One of the 7 requirements to meet the needs of the next generation is to be authentic. Almost nothing a radio station says or does is authentic. Radio is full of hype, commercials, promos, and noise.

That can be fixed.

The other 6 things that younger demos now require are just as important and we’ll go through them one by one. This is so vital that I use all 7 in the work I do.

This is going to be a fruitful dialog because without spending a single dime, smart radio stations can fine tune their strategy for not only satisfying their loyal core older listeners but for the first time have a chance to win the hearts of younger ones.

No one can make me believe that radio cannot span wider generational needs and interests because the research you’ll learn proves otherwise.

Here are the other important issues at the March 18th meeting:

  1. Attracting More Website Visits. WTOP in DC does 2 million every month and 31.8 million page views. So we’re bringing PD Laurie Cantillo in to sit with us and discuss. We can question here together.
  2. Solutions to Commercial Clutter. Look, running 8-minutes of unlistenable commercials every hour is a suicide wish.  I know, they pay the bills. I’m going to present you with 11 ways to make this problem get better.
  3. How Much Radio, How Much Digital. I can tell you right now I am going to show you the digital initiatives that have no payoff. But you’ll be impressed by the few that do and you’re going to want to jump on them. One costs under $1,000 and is pretty impressive.
  4. Listen Longer Strategies. Radio TSL has been dropping every year since the early 1990s. This calls for disrupting the way we build our hot clocks. I’m going to show you how to throw that hourly clock out and replace it with something better.
  5. Eliminating 2015’s 3 Biggest Listener Objections. Outdated morning shows, too many commercials and repetitious music. Do even one thing on these three listener objections and you’re ahead of the market.
  6. Effective Ways To Compete With On-Demand Content. I am going to play dirty with Millennials developing content they cannot possibly resist about employment, college loans, themselves. We can do this – as you will see.
  7. What Millennials Want From Radio. This list has seven things on it and I can tell you I live by this list every day whether I am talking to Millennials or not.
  8. Selling Against Programmatic Buying. This is essentially bidding down rates so its time to have an action plan to combat it. How to walk from a deal that media buyers ruined by bidding down the rate on a competitor. The secret to getting longer term contracts. A few very smart stations are way ahead of the industry on this.
  9. Start Your Own Short-Form Video Business. Digital shouldn’t be an add-on to what you do on the air. Do the best on-air radio you can possibly do and a separate stream of revenue from the hottest digital project ever. Let me play some short-form videos for you that are being done by young people who are making more money than most stations do from all their digital initiatives.
  10. Beyond Clicks – Listener Engagement. Social media is changing rapidly from mass audience to small groups of participants. Radio must rethink using social media to promote what’s on the air.   It’s a waste. Let’s talk about what your listeners who “like” you really want.  Which social media site is ascending at the pace of YouTube?
  11. Telling Stories – the New Spoken Word Radio. You don’t have to run a talk station to cash in on storytelling.  And it is highly saleable.
  12. Why You Should Take a Pass On Podcasting. Podcasting is another form of talk radio. It may appeal to Gen Xers and Baby Boomers but it sure hasn’t made any real money. Ask me about storytelling and how it could find its way onto your station – even a music station. Especially, a music station.
  13. 8 Millennial Mistakes You Don’t Want To Make. There are 95 million Millennials out there – the largest generation ever, even larger than the Baby Boom generation. Here are the 7 things Millennials want most from radio.

This is a collaborative environment in an atmosphere of approval and acceptance. We work together, learn together and explore.

I’ll play video, give you resources, come up with a plan of attack to get out ahead of the most critical issues affecting the radio industry in the year ahead.

March 18th – a day of information and inspiration where we work together. I’m putting lots of time aside for your questions.

This event will not be available by stream or video – only live and in-person.

Less than 2 weeks until conference day.

Independent broadcasters and digital entrepreneurs are invited to the 6th annual Media Solutions Seminar at the Hub Conference Center March 18th in Philadelphia, walking distance from Amtrak’s 30th Street Station and 20 minutes from Philadelphia International Airport.

Buffet breakfast, lunch and all breaks prepared by James Beard award-winning chef Jean-Marie Lacroix, former executive chef at The Four Seasons included.

Reserve a seat.

Inquire about group rates here.

Look through the online program brochure here.

Here’s the Agenda:

Wednesday, March 18, 2015


8:00 am         Registration / Complimentary Breakfast

9:00 am         Solutions to Commercial Clutter
                      How Much Radio / How Much Digital?
                      Listen Longer Strategies
                      Eliminating Radio’s 3 Biggest Objections

10:30 am       Break

10:45 am      Ways To Compete with Online Content
                     What Millennials Want From Radio
                      8 Millennial Mistakes You Don’t Want To Make

12 Noon        Complimentary Lunch

1:00 pm        How To Attract Millions To Your Website (Laurie Cantillo interview)

2:15 pm         Break

2:30 pm         Selling Against Competitors Who Drop Rates
                      Innovative Sources of New Radio Revenue
                      Telling Stories – the New Spoken Word
                      Why You Should Pass On Podcasting

3:30 pm        Audience Q & A

4:00 pm       Conference Concludes

This one-day seminar is not available on tape, digitally or by stream.

Reserve a seat.

Inquire about group rates here.