Solutions To Radio’s 12 Biggest Challenges

  1. Too Many Commercials – Scheduling spots in stop sets exclusively by length.       Roving stop sets. Making local commercials so compelling that they repel the usual tune out. The type of commercial that Millennials love that radio does not presently do.  Just as running many :10 and :15s can make listeners feel the stop sets are even longer than they are, there is now a way to make them seem shorter.
  2. What To Do with 70 Million Baby Boomers – New evidence that making formatic changes that Millennials like also pleases baby boomers but customizing content and presentation for Boomers risks turning off 95 million Millennials.
  3. Music Radio TSL Losses – Prevent music radio listening declines due to streaming music services such as Pandora, Spotify and YouTube, the biggest source of new music for young people by changing the way playlists are put together.
  4. Eliminating the 3 Biggest Listener Objections To Radio – Too many lousy commercials, outdated morning shows and playing the same repetitive music. Focus on three new features to replace traffic, time checks and weather.  Three features that are not available on smartphones and entice eager new advertisers.
  5. Music That Is Too Repetitive – Two new strategies. One adds more new music without watering down the hits.  The better approach is to rip up the traditional playlist and present shorter cuts of songs that are now played all the way through. Research shows music listeners do not listen to any song all the way through.
  6. How To Get Listeners To Listen Longer – TSL has been down every year since the early 90’s. Ironically, long music sweeps are considered a turn off when money demo listeners are studied. Changing the formatic elements to create more interruptions not less to feed short attention spans.
  7. Selling Against Competitors Who Cut Their Rates – Most of the major groups have given in on rates making it hard for independent competitors to hold the line. Why you should never sell digital and terrestrial radio on the same sales call – ever. How the biggest radio revenue producers protect their rates, increase their billing and breed loyalty in their increasingly crucial top spending advertisers.
  8. Turn-Ons & Turn-Offs. Change the way you speak to audiences, dangerous sweepers, surprising words that turn off young audiences when used on the air, etc. For example: avoid words with “est” on the end. Hear about how male audiences now care more about whether they are fun to be with and how that should trigger changes in how radio relates to all audiences.
  9. How To Attract Millennials To Radio – Demographers have discovered 5 things that Millennials crave. Do these 5 things every hour of every day and radio becomes more relevant to the 95 million members of this age group. If you do nothing else, take notes on how the make your stations sound more authentic in their eyes – one of the 5 important things to do.
  10. What To Do About the Digital Dashboard – What folks are missing is that the only thing that has changed is more competitors for fewer pre-sets. Consider ways to win a place on the pre-sets rather than take on the issue of digital dashboards.
  11. The Decline of News & Talk – Two staple radio formats are seeing audiences erode or attracting unsellable aging demographics. It’s not likely owners will be launching new news stations and less likely that traditional radio talk formats will be successfully launched on the old model. But don’t miss this glimmer of hope – a spoken word format that young money demos actually want. Young audiences love storytelling as much as Boomers loved political talk.  Time to transition.
  12. The Demise of AM Radio – By the time the FCC gets around to helping AM owners it will be too late. Is it even possible for anyone under 60 to locate or listen to an AM station?  I’ll answer that.  No.  But AM could do to FM what radio did to it.

All 12 are on the agenda at my upcoming Media Solutions Conference in Philadelphia in 6 weeks

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