How Industries can Survive Change

This article from the New York Times uses Radio as an example of a good industry "pivot" in times of industrial change:

Radio is an even better example. In its 1940s heyday, it was the center of national entertainment. Then, in the 1950s, television began stealing radio’s biggest stars, like Jack Benny and Abbott and Costello. National advertisers — radio’s revenue base — followed the talent. “Radio, actually shockingly, was pronounced dead in 1953,” says Susan J. Douglas, chair of the communication studies department at the University of Michigan.  But the industry revitalized itself by tapping into new markets. First it stumbled upon the youth music market, congregating around the car radio. Then radio innovators found other neglected markets, including underground music movements, longer-form news and talk radio. Along the way, radio’s business model changed; the medium cultivated new niche advertisers, rather than national advertisers, to pay for its new niche programming.

What's the lesson of this revitalization recipe for radio today?

It's the most familiar old story in marketing:  Give folks what they can't get elsewhere.  And give them what they can't get anywhere near as well in any other way.

Our solution goes well beyond extending our brands into new media.  Our solution relates to the fundamental value propositions of our brands – why they matter – if they matter – no matter what medium or distribution channel they live in.

If we create content that matters we will always have an audience.

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