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Why doesn’t your station ever “alert” the audience?

Here’s an email I got today from a local TV station, where I signed up for urgent updates some time ago:

VIDEO ALERT: Mickelson Talks About Winning 2nd Masters One week after winning the PGA’s most prestigious tournament, San Diego’s own Phil Mickelson talks to reporters at the La Jolla Country Club. Watch it LIVE at 10:30 a.m. on

First, you should know that I get very few updates from these guys, and when I get one it’s almost always important (the above is video from a local country club for one of the most significant tournaments in golf).

Second, I should tell you that this email came only TEN MINUTES before the time of the LIVE event.

Third, it should be obvious that this email directs the recipient to something VERY SPECIFIC on the station’s website with a direct link.

Why do I bother telling you all this?


1. Your station probably sends a mailing out when it suits you, not ten minutes prior to the tune-in event. This is the difference between a dull-witted “blast” and a member invitation.

2. Your station probably sends a mass of fairly generic information with few or no specific things to tune in for (the ideal would be one per). That is, there may be no SPECIFIC tune-in event to justify the mailing.

3. Your station probably sends to recipients who are targets of your database (as opposed to the lucky souls who are members of your community). That is, the message is more for your benefit than theirs.

4. Your station probably sends out thinly veiled client promotions disguised as “content.” I have never received anything more than what I’ve asked for from the TV station above.

5. Your station has probably never invited listeners to sign up for emergency bulletins – weather, traffic, news, you name it. As I’ve noted before, if there’s a fire in my neighborhood (always a concern here in Southern California) there is not one local radio station that can be counted on to email me about it when it happens.

Sound like your station?

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