The benefit of Satellite Radio

Said the CFO for Beasely Broadcast Group:

“The benefit of Satellite Radio is choice, but [with HD Radio] we’re going to be able to do that for free.”

This is a myth.

Who says the benefit of Satellite Radio is “choice?”

If listeners wanted a lot more choice we as broadcasters would rush to provide it. If you view any survey on the topic which features a broad and representative base of radio listeners they’ll tell you the same thing: the level of satisfaction with the diversity of offerings on radio is fairly high. For proof of this, look no further than the fact that the average radio listener tunes in only about three stations during a typical week. And I’m told the average Satellite listener tunes in only about one channel more than that.

If people wanted that much choice you’d think they would sample more of the menu, wouldn’t you?

But no. People want what they want. They want what they’re comfortable and familiar with. The adventurous audiophiles are the exceptions, not the rule. And woe to any broadcaster who builds a business model around them. After all, these are the Satellite early adopters. They are spoken for.

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