Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Wednesday Blogs

54° - clear at 7:39am

Good Morning from Okemos

Robert Feder.
His retirement is radio's loss. Feder - well known columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times who's written with passion for the medium and his market has announced that he'll be accepting a buy-out package and leaving in the coming weeks. If you followed Chicago radio, you read Feder.

Sean Ross of Edison Media writes more about Feder

Weekly Update. Longtime friend and consultant Dave Lange now posting a weekly review of radio news with "The Radio Week That Was". Check it out on Dave's blog here.

More Voices.
Audience Development Group's Kevin Robinson and Tim Moore are both offering their take on the business - each with a weekly email. Just started receiving this week. Subscriptions are free here.

Around The Dial:
WZLX/Boston offering listeners a chance at cash with "Dilating For Dollars". Staffer Heather from the station's morning show is expecting.

The listener who comes closest to the date and time of birth wins. See more

Congrats to
WLAV. The Grand Rapids classic rock station wins two Marconi awards at last week's NAB. Very awesome!

Will have more tonight. Have a great day.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sunday Morning Odds & Sods

63° - overcast at 12:54pm

Happy Sunday from Michigan.

I be back. Lots of catching up to do over the past week; work and other projects just taking priority, but I do appreciate the visits to this blog.

Listening. This morning to Bob Stroud on Chicago's WDRV. Featured artist is Jim Croce who passed away 35 years ago. Later: Steve Palec on Milwaukee's WKLH. As I tuned in, Steve was featuring U2 with some great sound bites. BTW...kudos to WKLH on their new website. Very nice!

NAB. Looks like one of the best radio shows (and that includes the R&R Convention as well as the Jacobs Media Summit) in years - wish I had been there.

I'm still making my way through all the press reports - but there's a couple of things that caught my eye.

In a session devoted to content - talent coach Steve Reynolds repeated a thought I've passed along many times on this blog before: "...Consumers are drawn to two things: truth and humanity. You can't BS consumers."

Indeed. (Dave Lange just convered this topic on his blog over the past month - and this past week offered part 4 of his series on authenticity

Discussions on content appeared to have revolved around asking listeners what they want. Nothing new there; but sometimes just a reminder.

Along with traditional research, programmers in PPM markets now have a great tool to provide them with audience behavior; and knowledge gained through PPM will trickle down to the diary markets.

On the topic of: "PPM Prep School" attendees were given a PPM Tip Sheet that included:
  • Teach and encourage airstaff the "Art of the Tease," the benefits of forward momentum, and appointment setting to garner another occasion of listening and its value.
  • Keep an event log of you and your competitors' inordinate programming events (pro sports games/broadcasts, special weekends, dates of your marketing).
  • PPM is a new world that measures actual exposure vs. recall so content is king.
  • More listeners listen to more stations than we ever thought before (from 2-3 with the diary to 5-6 with the meter).
  • Minimizing the reasons to tune out will be the new mantra.
R&R offers great coverage of what went down in Austin here. Be sure to read thoughts on talent coaching and development...good stuff. Let's rock.

Recruiting Air Talent. Consultant Jaye Albright tips us to one station's efforts to recruit with online video:

I'm unclear as to where the station posted this to attract prospective applicants, but its a great piece that tells a lot about the station, the co-host you might be working with - and the market. Nice!

Catching up with Rick:
Every Sunday, Chicago's Rick Kaempfer posts some great interviews on his Chicago Rado Spotlight blog. This week he catches up with former WKQX AM Drive talent Alan Cox. Read here.

Last week Rick spent time with consultant Kevin Robinson. I've been fortunate to speak with Kevin in the back and I just admire his resume. A must-read here.

Have a great Sunday.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Fall Book Promos: President or VP?

70° - overcast at 9:09am

Good Morning and Happy Friday from Michigan.

Fall book begins in less than a week.
Starting to see some promotional activity around the country....I'm certain more stations will roll out there first phase plans early next week. Here's what I've seen so far:

WGRF is giving its listeners an opportunity to become the "President of 97 Rock". The station used imagination and resources to put together a great prize package that looks like a modest cash outlay. See here.

WAXQ/New York is offering listeners a chance to become the "VP of Rock" a twist of the Workforce Payroll promo. Also adds a CGM element to the mix as listeners get to make their favorite classic rock song part of the contest. See the web execution here.

Very cool in Detroit:
WCSX is giving its younger listeners a chance to go to the "School of Rock" with a song-of-the-day promotion. Plus win an autographed guitar. Another high-impact/low-cost promo! More here.

KGB/San Diego and its Dave, Shelly and Chainsaw morning show (one of the best, IMHO) is offering listeners $1000 a day in September. Here.

With AC/DC hitting the road
to support their new release, there's opportunities for lots of station
promos and tie-ins this fall. Have seen a few already around the country. WBLM/Portland is one of 'em - offering listeners a chance to attend a "secret dress rehearsal show". Here.
AC/DC tour dates

More promos as I see 'em!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Wednesday Blogs

40° - clear at 7:18am

Good Morning from Mid-Michigan.
Autumn appears to have arrived early; its a bit chilly.

Just a few things from my blogosphere......

The Death of Radio?
I don't think so. Our industry receives so much bad press in spite of its domination.

Consultant Fred Jacobs
offers up a great post this morning on his blog....the realities both good and not-so.

A highlight:

"...terrestrial radio is already a great distribution outlet that reaches well more than 90% of Americans each week. As an advertising vehicle and a way to drive web traffic, its long-term viability has been proven."


"Radio still has some monster brands, but you'd never know it by the way they are often hidden from listeners and from advertisers. Only in radio do the highest rated stations so often get overlooked when it's time to dole out those precious marketing dollars. In radio, you don't get medical care until you get sick."

Ouch. And how true in too many cases. Catch Fred's piece

Dave Lange on Authenticity - Part 3.
Dave continues his great series on being authentic. And in this installment takes a look at what's going on in Chicago - with a station often highlighted on this blog:

"While there are many stations that stand out with high Authentic scores one great example to listen to is The Drive in Chicago. The main claim for the station is basic and simple - The Sound Track of Our Lives. Notice that they use 'our' not 'your' - which would assume that somehow they knew Your life."

"The presentation is also low key. There isn't a big voice booming announcer making sweeping big balls statements. The avoid the laser shot gimmicks in the production and often rely on classic song hooks to showcase the 'soundtrack.'"

"And when you look at the results the Drive has pushed past the legendary Loop complete with Brandmeier. They have also run past WXRT which likely had the 'authentic' Q-score before the Drive signed on."

Dave's piece is a must-read (here); and also serves as another acknowledgment of the great strategy and execution by Greg Solk and Patty Martin at Bonneville/Chicago. Who owns the "authentic" score in your market?

Make it a great day.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Monday Monday

54° - partly cloudy at 7:15am

Hello from Okemos.

The weekend spent on the forthcoming internet station. I'm confident that online beta testing will begin by the end of month, perhaps sooner. Still have some key library categories to fill. Stay tuned!

Bob & Tom.
Radio on TV. In Friday's FMQB, the dynamic duo out of Indianapolis discuss their new deal with WGN America. Read here.

Fall book begins in ten days
. Along with the next PPM cycle. Its never too late to prep. Jaye Albright offers some tips for program directors here.

Meanwhile, author/agent of change Seth Godin writes about "Fixing The One Big Thing". Very relevant to radio on the air and off. Read

Radio Stories. Rick Kaempfer chatted with WBBM-FM/Chicago's Eddie Volkman. Read here. I grew up watching Eddie's dad on Chicago television.

Live Tracks. Doing a "live cuts" weekend? These have been out for several years - but found them on Ebay and got them cheap for the internet project: SNL25/Saturday Night Live: The Musical Performances Volumes 1 & 2.

Some great stuff, though much of it out of the traditional classic rock format.

Volume 1 features Elvis Costello's 1977 performance of "Radio Radio", including the false start of what he was scheduled to sing that night.

The day job awaits. More later.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Local Hero

67° - drizzle at 7:09am

Good Morning from Michigan.

This is simply a great promotion - from
WPYX in Albany. Has localism, heart, community and listener participation. And can be done with any similar jobs in your community.

With the anniversary of 9/11 coming up, this is very timely. But it really can be done anytime of the year.

Check out WPYX's web execution

A great job WPYX!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Catching Up...

66° - light rain at 11:45pm

Back after a busy couple of days - between kids beginning the school year and busy schedules with the jobs. The research work has really picked up as of late in the past several weeks.

Again to Chicago's WDRV...for pulling off the next-to-impossible now with two pre-currency PPMs in a row. I wish I could share - If what I've seen is any indication of the future, the Drive is going to rock the Windy City.

Special kudos to WDRV PD Patty Martin who simply pilots a great radio station; if you've read this blog for any length of time, you know its been one of my favorites for years now.

So Long:
To Don LaFontaine. A man who motivated millions - most never knew his name. The movies will never be the same.

Google's new web browser. Lightning fast. Tried it last night. Still in beta; test with caution - there's still a few issues to be worked out.

Changing radio station behavior.
On Tuesday, Dave Martin wrote a great piece that began:

"One of my goals in 2008 is to meet the person that first decided it was a good idea to ask users to do something and then, when they do it more than
expected, you tell them that they've broken "the rules"
and that they're wrong. Bad user!"

"One call per month. One winner per household every thirty days. One "major prize" winner per household per year."

"What is happening here is the reverse of any effective heavy user program. The heavy user is being punished rather than rewarded for expressing your brand as a preference. We catch them behaving exactly as instructed and then we tell them that they're wrong. "How dare you show up again at another of our on location broadcasts!"

Dave's entire piece here. How do you reward heavy listeners? Share.

Around the dial:

Today is Zeptember 3rd. Celebrating Zeptember...WZLX/Boston, WCSX/Detroit and WLAV/Grand Rapids....very cool! WCSX devoting their HD-2 channel fulltime to Zeppelin through September 7th. A full rundown of special WCSX "Zeptember" programming here.

WDRV/Chicago kicked off A to Z yesterday (Tuesday) afternoon at 3. A feature that still brings high TSL everywhere I've done it!

Thanks for stopping by.