Millennials Freak at Mobile, Video Ads

If this isn’t a once in a lifetime opportunity for radio, I don’t know what is.

According to Deloitte’s “Digital Democracy Survey”, 80% of young TV online and mobile TV viewers will skip commercials.

Over 70% of Millennials and those under 15 (Gen Z) say such ads are “irrelevant”.

45% use ad blocking software with 89% saying it is their intent to block all advertising.

46% say they focus more on ads that they can skip.

99% of Millennials and Gen Z multitask while watching video.

If the radio industry wasn’t so driven by two big companies flirting with bankruptcy and desperate to sell anything, they would call this an opportunity for radio, too.

Independent local stations – the ones planning on staying in business and making a profit – can come up with a strategy to make radio advertising more appealing to a very large generation of potential listeners.

Be more authentic in spots.

Use more voices – we now even know the optimum number of voices to create the most effective ads.

Test the spots before running so the client doesn’t waste their money (obviously, a debt-ridden consolidator isn’t worried about advertisers wasting their money or doing more effective ads).

You bet advertisers will pay more for this.

What I’m saying is that the glass is more than half full for radio if stations focus on results and that includes understanding how Millennials and Gen Z think.

You are aware that I am doing a conference for local radio in about a week and a half.

I have consulted an expert in Millennials to drill down on these powerful keys.

And independent stations who have mastered – yes, mastered – getting premium rates from advertisers while making them more effective to in-demo audiences.

I can make you this promise.

Invest a day in this conference and you will have so much focused information on what is currently trending among audiences and advertisers.

It will be the best and most useful day you’ve spent gathering intelligence on how to compete in the second wave of consolidation.

View the Full Program here.

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Dickey’s Resignation from the Cumulus Board

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            Entercom Planning 2 Major Surprises

            iHeart's Soaring Stock

            iHeart Major Market Fail

            iHeart's Plan to Dupe Lenders

            The Cumulus Cuts, Staff Reductions

            iHeart Takes 1st Step Toward Bankruptcy Filing

            The Katz Rep Firm Scandal

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2017 Philly Radio Conference (April 5) Registration

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The Epidemic of Shorter, Cheaper Spots

This one is on iHeart.

They can’t get their rate so they are selling as much as they can for as little as they have to take.

Market after market competing managers are telling me that this is killing them. It drives the price of radio down and it makes it harder to make your numbers.

And if anyone cares – good broadcasters usually do --- a lot of crappy, cheap, short ads are being aired making the on-air clutter problem even worse.

In other words, listeners have had it with commercials and radio adds more of them. And when you run a lot of shorter ads, it seems like even more.

This is a big deal especially for independent operators who can’t afford to sell inventory the way iHeart is doing.

Scorched earth selling.

So, if you’ve been following my narratives about the radio conference I’m doing in Philly in about a week and a half, you’ll understand why I’ve consulted independent stations that are succeeding at fighting rate cutters.

I’m going to be honest (as opposed to the opposite, right), even shrewd operators are getting dinged by predatory sales practices of desperate consolidators like iHeart.

But they are getting dinged less.

And they are increasing the spends of their best advertisers and cutting down on churn.

So if you’re at the table when we get to this number one revenue issue confronting radio right now, you’ll learn …

  • How to get your best advertisers to spend more with you even if they have to take it from your competitor.
  • The exact pitch that makes you their lead and biggest buy.
  • Why and how independent stations employing the approach you will learn are even getting premium rates.
  • The package to put in front of advertisers and we’ll name names of resources you can go to for helping your best advertisers spend with you first with the biggest buy.

I’m not a big fan of what consolidation has done to the radio industry and I want to offer solutions that can help independent operators succeed even when their competitors are hurting the industry.

I can’t force you to be there, but I can invite you with this promise – it will be the best and most useful day you’ve spent gathering intelligence on how to compete in the second wave of consolidation.

View the Full Program here.

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Entercom Planning 2 Major Surprises

Subscribers get INSTANT ACCESS here.

Become a NEW SUBSCRIBER and begin with Entercom Planning 2 Major Surprises here.

A new subscription also unlocks these full articles …

            iHeart's Soaring Stock

            iHeart Major Market Fail

            iHeart's Plan to Dupe Lenders

            The Cumulus Cuts, Staff Reductions

            iHeart Takes 1st Step Toward Bankruptcy Filing

            The Katz Rep Firm Scandal

And includes access to every article for the past year plus 3,622 in our archive like these (scroll through/latest first). Everything.

For 27 cents a day, join the thousands of members who read Inside Music Media -- insightful, deadly honest and informative.

Inside Music Media contains no advertising. Accepts no corporate money or consideration. And is beholden only to subscribers who appreciate it so much that they pay for it. Thank you.

2017 Philly Radio Conference (April 5) Registration

Contact Jerry

Report News in our Witness Protection Program

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Radio’s 2 Biggest Problems

One of them is not radio’s fault, really.

The other absolutely IS radio’s doing.

Consolidation ruined the business.

When I first said this as publisher of Inside Radio in 1996, I got more crap from people who were loving the potential of gobbling up competitors, running an entire market and dominating ad rates.

Did they get fooled.

But all of that eventually faded when they saw that the venture capital that put these monopolies together started firing them or making them take on more jobs than any human could do.

And it wasn’t just once – it kept happening and still does today.

Just yesterday, I got a tip on Entercom and how they are cutting CBS expenses even now without FCC approval to merge.  Just a small detail when CBS execs understand a wink and a nod.

The other problem that is directly on radio is a blatant disregard for an entire generation of listeners and what a lousy time to assume that all teens growing up would be radio listeners.

So we lost Millennials and judging from my mail and my contacts in this business, the word Millennial is not one radio people even like to say even though they constitute the 18-34 year old demographic.

You might say Napster killed music, but it didn’t.

Apple killed music when Steve Jobs talked the labels obsessed with music piracy into letting him sell tunes for 99 cents.

Let the cherry picking begin.

You might say digital devices killed radio but radio killed radio by refusing to change, ignoring vastly different needs of an 86 million generation – something it continues to do right up to this moment.

So venture capital continues to play monopoly with a handful of groups.

Only the strong will survive unless …

Unless, the local, independent radio operators re-engage this Millennial audience because without them there is no growth ahead for radio.

  1. We will need to focus on making radio the next social medium because radio personalities used to have a direct pipeline into the heads of listeners and it can be that way again when it comes to music, all things local and advocacy.  Social media is not Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or SnapChat.  It’s radio. 
  2. We will need to stop stealing from advertisers.  Okay, get mad at me if you want but it’s true.  Radio consolidators are so desperate that they have accepted a new standard – shorter spots, cheaper prices.  Now that’s a loser if I ever heard it. Instead radio needs to help its best advertisers get palpable results.  Test copy, produce better commercials, meet joint goals.  Not just run one cheap ad after another.  That’s not a business, it’s a fire sale.  So when I tell you Jerry Lee knows more about making advertiser ad campaigns wildly successful at higher prices, I’m not kidding.  That’s why I am having him lay it all out at my conference in two weeks – the one you need to attend if you care about not going down with venture capital backed companies on the verge of bankruptcy.  You think bankruptcy doesn’t hurt you?
  3. Once and for all, get over digital.  Do radio.  Great radio.  Give listeners what they want and advertisers something they can’t get from a programmatic buy at low, low prices.  And when you want to do digital right, make it short form video, the fastest path to a never-ending money stream.  Get the right topics, the right people, the right angle and the right monetization – and we’re going to have a conversation about this.

To make miraculous things happen for the rest of this year, become expert at the things that matter most to listeners and advertisers by taking a seat at the table at my radio conference in less than two weeks.

Conference details here.

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iHeart’s Soaring Stock

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Become a NEW SUBSCRIBER and begin with iHeart's Soaring Stock here.

A new subscription also unlocks these full articles …

            iHeart Major Market Fail

            iHeart's Plan to Dupe Lenders

            The Cumulus Cuts, Staff Reductions

            iHeart Takes 1st Step Toward Bankruptcy Filing

            The Katz Rep Firm Scandal

            Lenders Going After iHeart's Pittman

            The Emmis Layoffs

And includes access to every article for the past year plus 3,619 in our archive like these (scroll through/latest first). Everything.

For 27 cents a day, join the thousands of members who read Inside Music Media -- insightful, deadly honest and informative.

Inside Music Media contains no advertising. Accepts no corporate money or consideration. And is beholden only to subscribers who appreciate it so much that they pay for it. Thank you.

The program for my 2017 Radio Conference in 2 weeks is now set. Here is the final and complete program agenda with times, details and presentations here.

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Changing How Radio Engages Listeners

When young in-demo audiences under 40 turn on a radio, they hear aliens.

Radio doesn’t sound like them and doesn’t have what they want from a radio station today.

Here are some of the things listeners want from radio …

  1. Talk one-to-one not to everybody at once.
  2. Listeners do not appreciate when radio stations try to relate to them. At my conference last year, Dan Mason, Jr. presented his research that showed listeners are turned off by stations that try too hard to relate. In other words, be authentic, not patronizing.
  3. Listeners still feel radio personalities talk down to them.
  4. They don’t like when women are put into subservient roles or put in positions that are second to males – a role that used to be accepted.
  5. They hate hype and yet radio stations are veritable hype machines with sweepers, promos and jocks who sound like they are bragging. Most stations would tell you their station never hypes but listeners would disagree.
  6. Radio will have to come up with another way to schedule commercials. If stations keep running short cheaper spots that ad agencies prefer, listeners will tune out and stay away.
  7. Read their lips – they don’t listen to songs all the way through even ones they love. Ironically, radio is based on the theory that if we play the most popular songs, the audience will stay listening. Any realist knows this is not the case so a different approach is now required.
  8. Listeners want the station to stand for something. Quick: what does your station stand for in one or two words. Let your audience answer and don’t be surprised if they can’t. And if you think they will regurgitate your on-air branding, they won’t. A radio station that engages audiences must be described by them in one or two meaningful words.
  9. They want stations to help them with life – get a job, meet people, follow their dreams, pay their college loans down. No station you know of does this.
  10. They want stations to advocate for them and fight for what’s fair. Stations advocate for listeners? What am I smoking?

I have described a station that today’s audiences want and today’s radio is not giving them.

To find out how to start the process of changing the way we engage audiences, reserve a seat and join the discussion at my upcoming radio conference two weeks from today where we will share ideas and strategies. Details here.

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