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Questions for Radio….

1. What business are you in (answer thoughtfully)?

2. What do advertisers buy from you – really? Why choose you over other ways to reach their consumers?

3. Why do listeners tune you in? How much of the reason is related to your simplicity and ubiquity (both of which will be challenged in the years to come), and how much of it is related to your unique and compelling content?

4. How important is unique content to your continued success? Are you poised to be more or less unique in the future?

5. Why does radio – which helps clients market their wares – invest such a small proportion of its revenue in marketing its own stations? And why have many stations and groups cut their marketing expenditures to favor immediate cash flow, despite the obvious linkage between today’s marketing and tomorrow’s cash flow?

6. Why are local jocks often replaced by voice-tracked cyber-jocks who are only cheaper and not “better” than the jocks they replace? What does this signal to your audience?

7. Why does radio so abhor risks that it punishes those who take them when they fail? After all, those who fear to fail rarely achieve success.

8. Why is radio virtually alone among major industries in that it lacks high ranking executives with the term “marketing” in their title? An entire industry in the marketing business, but no executive in charge of “marketing”?

9. When was the last time you attended an industry event which had nothing to do with radio and everything to do with advertising or trends or digital media?

10. Why does radio cut its research budget to favor its short term cash flow without making the connection between R&D expenditures and its very future? Do you think Starbucks eliminated its R&D? Do you think GM did, despite their woes? Would Apple ever do this?

11. Why does radio continue to run freebie spots for HD radio when the listeners have already voted their lack of interest, thus assuring that we are spamming their ears with an irrelevant turn-off message? What does the lack of success of these spots say about the effectiveness of radio – and is that fair?

I’m just warming up.

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