Thursday, January 3, 2008

A Common Sense Approach for HD

-4.7° - overcast at 8:13am; its cold!

Consultant Fred Jacobs - with help from David Martin - stirred up the HD Radio marketing issue just before the holidays - after the HD Radio Alliance issued some new creative for their stations to begin airing this past Monday.

Apparently while these commercials play up HD; they "play down" traditional AM/FM Radio. Not good. I have yet to hear the spots - as within hours of Fred's assessment of the new spots (two thumbs down) - the HD Radio Alliance elected to password protect the spots so they couldn't be heard (which defies all logic...).

UPDATE: The password protection is gone this morning. Here.

This morning Fred calls for some action that's long overdue:

"My takeaway on this situation is that it's time for a larger industry dialogue about HD Radio. An assessment needs to be done to honestly determine what's working, what's failing, and where to go from here. There are too many passionate broadcasters who are upset, frustrated, and disillusioned by what has transpired. On the other hand, I get the feeling that Peter Ferrara of the Alliance also cares very much about this initiative and making it work."

Read Fred's piece
here. The issue here is not whether HD Radio is a flawed technology or not - there have been some very strong opinions out there - many of which seem to come around anytime there's a discussion of any sort about HD.

The real meat is that HD is something many broadcasters have invested in - is a technology that offers many new consumer choices - and with the right consumer acceptance offers additional revenue opportunities and new positions for programming and on-air talent.

Given all the media choices these days it isn't going to be easy; but there's a vast brain trust in our industry willing and wanting to make it work.

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