Tag: public radio


Whatever Happened to Radio Bumper Stickers?

Once a radio industry - and radio station fan - mainstay, it's hard for me to find a radio station bumper sticker on the road nowadays. "People won't put bumper stickers on their cars anymore," some say. That's nonsense. People won't put just any bumper sticker on their cars. Just as people won't put just any vanity slogan on their license plate or just any branded frame around it. People brand themselves and their cars with symbols that give their lives meaning and tell their story to those who watch from afar. This is the story of who I am and what I love. Why would a radio station, … [Read more...]


Radio: What Happened to BIG?

A few weeks ago I was very pleased and flattered to be part of the opening presentation at the Public Radio Program Directors Conference in Portland. The PRPD is always one of my favorite events because every single person in the room is on a content- and service-based mission to make their communities and the lives of folks in them better. They are passionate about what they're doing. As one of the speakers said, "nobody here is getting rich doing this." The theme of all the opening presentations was the same: What's enduring about Public Radio, even in the face of dramatic … [Read more...]


Why Nothing Changes in Talk Radio

Today, I'm taking a back seat to the inimitable Darryl Parks, a legend in the world of commercial radio spoken word. Darryl has an extraordinarily blunt and insightful perspective on what ails Talk Radio, and you can read it here. A few highlights: I guess I hit close to home with my prior blog post on the Ratings Disaster that is today’s talk radio. The June PPM’s suck for talk radio. Hell. The diary markets coming in are bringing little joy. And many in the talk radio industry just sit back and continue on autopilot with the same hard line conservative narrative hour after hour, ignoring … [Read more...]


How to Measure NPR’s Success in a Digital Age

Is NPR’s performance on the digital front a sign that radio’s digital evolution has stalled? Or, worse, that it’s just a big hairy mistake? So says would-be town crier Richard Harker. Harker’s basic point is right on: Broadcasters should direct some of their innovative attention towards content on traditional radio channels and not only experiment with all things digital. I agree! But saying innovative effort should be spread around is different from saying initiatives on the digital front are a waste. Yet that’s what Harker seems to say with the example of NPR, where he steps into … [Read more...]


Radio’s REAL Problem on the New Auto Dashboard

Yesterday I wrote that some auto industry analysts believe radio needs to be easy to find and use on the new auto dashboard because ease of discovery and use will trump any discussion of how good or bad the actual content is. In other words, consumers are not likely to seek out great content they care about unless it's first easy to find and use. While it's certainly true that making anything easier to find and use promotes both discovery and use, is that even within radio's power in the new dash (unless we pay for that prime access)? In the auto context, radio is only a distribution … [Read more...]


Radio’s Missing Marketing Funnel

One of the great things about non-commercial radio is that it’s supported largely by fans – the very “public” embodied in the term “public service.” And this is as true of NPR-type stations as it is for non-commercial Christian stations. And these stations have something else in common besides their business model: They both tend to lack a marketing funnel. What is a marketing funnel? It’s the process whereby consumers move from awareness and sampling of your station at the wide top to fan-ship and, in the case of public and non-commercial stations, financial support at the narrow … [Read more...]

hands exhibiting the cloud computing symbol

Local Public Radio: What To Do…

...in a world where the networks you pay for content circumvent you by distributing much of that same content online? This is a complicated question, but it's one that branding authority Tom Asacker tackles with me in this highlight from our conversation at the recent Public Radio Program Director's conference in Las Vegas. Is it as simple as "more local news" because newspapers are folding (pun intended) all over America? Oh no it isn't.  Not nearly. Watch (or click on the post title if there's no video image): [iframe … [Read more...]

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