Category: News

neighborhood
12/17

Me, My Family, and My Neighborhood

"Local” or “not local” is the wrong way to think about news and entertainment on the radio.When it comes to information, for example, there are two flavors – one kind is relevant to me, my family, or my neighborhood. The other kind is entertainment.Here is an overview of consumers' “circles of interest”:At the center is ME. Then my FAMILY. Then my NEIGHBORHOOD.Why not a circle for city (i.e., "local") news?Because the only city news that matters to me is the kind that affects me, my family, and my neighborhood (with the singular and important exception of local … [Read more...]

newstalk
12/16

Is News/Talk Really the Top Audio Format of 2013?

Nielsen just released a report trumpeting “News/Talk/Information” as the “Top Audio Format of 2013.”But what does that mean…really?First, recognize that the ranker is based on Persons 6+.Among 25-54’s, however, News/Talk/Info ranks 4th, clearly indicating that the driving force for the format’s dominance is persons over the age of 55, which should come as no surprise to anyone tracking News/Talk ratings over the years (not that 4th is shabby).Second, there is no indication that these numbers exclude Public Radio, so I will assume that the strength for News/Talk/Info also … [Read more...]

talk
11/16

News/Talking about the Wrong Things

Republican soul-searching followed the demographic slam to the gut from younger voters, African Americans, and Hispanics in the election earlier this month. And the reverberations from that punch have resonated through the ranks of News/Talk programmers and talent nationwide.While I can’t be specific about the research I have done in that area (it’s both extensive and proprietary), I can tell you this much:It should come as no great surprise.Interest in Talk per se – as expressed in the form of Conservative Political Talk – is only a small fraction of the overall interest in the … [Read more...]

Maybe News Doesn't Work on FM?
07/18

Maybe News doesn’t work on FM?

So another News option vanishes from the dial in NY and Chicago. Does this mean "News doesn't work on FM?"Of course not.It just means these stations in these specific formats executing what they did didn't work well enough in these markets at this time.Perhaps these markets are just too news-soaked to reward new entrants without enough meaningful and palpable differences, I don't know. Maybe the existing options were simply good enough. Maybe all the news bellies were already full.  Maybe news consumers who have not already chosen a radio news option have chosen other news … [Read more...]

fire
09/29

A Lesson for News/Talk Radio from Amazon’s Kindle Fire

Too many News/Talk broadcasters just don't get it. What can they learn from Amazon's new Kindle Fire?Quite a lot, I think.This is not a piece about Amazon vs. Apple.  Nor is it a piece about the merits and prospects for Kindle Fire.  Those are all discussed ad infinitum elsewhere.This is a piece about strategic thinking, specifically the strategic thinking that makes Kindle Fire different from the zillions of other tablet alternatives to Apple's groundbreaking iPad.Amazon's Jeff Bezos spelled it out, as reported by USA Today: One reason that some companies have not succeeded … [Read more...]

newsradio
08/15

Is PPM Unfair to News/Talk Radio?

Here's my understanding of how PPM works:In any given quarter-hour under diary methodology, you used to have to listen at least five continuous minutes for that listening to "count" you as a listener and to "count" your listening as an "occasion."Under PPM however, I'm told that those five minutes no longer need to be continuous.  That is, if I flip back to the station several times in a quarter-hour I count as a listener and my listening counts as one occasion as long as all those minutes and seconds add up to at least five minutes.This hurts the performance of … [Read more...]

Typewriter close up shot, concept of Online News
06/20

The Tiny Footprint of Local News Online

The audience for local news online is surprisingly small.From Lost Remote (one of my favorite blogs): A new report commissioned by the FCC discovered a “surprisingly small audience for local news traffic.” How small? Less than one in five news pageviews goes to local news sources — that’s a combination of newspaper sites, local TV sites and large independent news sites in a given market — and the average user spends just 0.45% of total internet time consuming local news.To make matters worse, local weather and traffic — staples of TV coverage — are becoming ubiquitous, built into … [Read more...]

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