“No such thing as the ‘Radio Business'”

Much of the problem of radio today stems from a fundamental misunderstanding of what "radio" means in the era of Twitter and Facebook and consumer empowerment.

Tom Asacker has one answer, which he'll amplify within the next week or so on this blog in a special interview:

…Take the struggling business of broadcast radio. If you think about it, there is really no such thing as the “radio business.” There’s the marketing/advertising/media/content/ platform/talent/listener/community” business. But most radio business owners are blind to this holistic view⎯that today’s radio brand involves what today’s customers are, especially how they derive value through their association with the brand. And so they’ve been late in employing new ideas and technologies to co-create value with their customers.  They didn’t see that brand marketers and content producers were looking for compelling value in the connection to the radio brand’s audience, as well as the audience’s affinity to the radio brand; listeners wanted compelling value in the audio interface, the content, the brand association, and the marketers’ advertising; talent desired compelling value in the brand association, as well as their relationship with management; and the community wanted compelling value in identifying with the radio brand, as well as in the brand-enabled connections and activities.

And, concludes Tom:

Are you strategically creating value for the marketplace ecosystem, or are you broadcasting messages and defending the status quo. Get your head out of the past and into the present.

The co-creation of value is a novel notion to broadcasters who have always viewed value creation as a one-way street.  Entertainment goes to listeners, ears go to radio, advertisers go to ears.  Just creation, no co-creation.

But now consumers are creators of content, not simply consumers of it.  Now consumers – through their blogs and Facebooks and Twitters – are media outlets, not simply media consumers.  Content that is not co-created is destined to be drowned out in an ocean of content more personal, more personalizable, more "valuable" in one way or another, than the canned stuff we cost-cut our way to.

The challenge is not simply to "share" your station on social media, but rather to invite your audience in to create with you.

And the same goes for your advertisers.

"Value" is in the mind of the beholder.

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