Are your station’s promos THIS “typical?”

Real estate agents themselves see-the-humor in this caricature in the AT&T Wireless commercial.
ATTrealtorsThe ad demonstrates a common marketing mistake agents make:
It’s look-alike.
Ever seen an agent who DOESN’T have his/her picture on business cards…heck, ANY marketing?
And typically, it’s that self-assured pose that the actors in this funny spot strike.
Is your station’s imaging as-typical?
Page 3 in my August newsletter addresses the TWO THINGS a station’s on-air imaging needs to accomplish…and warns-against a real common mistake News/Talk/Sports stations make this time of year.

Got Local?

“I’d be confused if I didn’t live here. That’s good.”
That’s Leighton Broadcasting Operations Manager Matt Senne, during an aircheck review session we did with a host who had made a local reference on-air.
Have you ever noticed this? You finally HEAR a successful legacy station, in another market, a station you’ve heard-ABOUT for years…and it sounds…odd? It’s because they’re talking-to-THERE, not where-you-are.

“Pittsburgh news, Pittsburgh talk, with people here IN Pittsburgh.”
That’s a promo liner on KDKA, which used to have Rush Limbaugh, before Clear Channel snatched-him-back to launch its own FM talker several years back…a station whose Share KDKA (AM) now more-than-doubles.
If you can say it, spray it.

Take your audience to the movies.

Before debt-hobbled mega-owners deleted local mojo from the expense budget, radio stations used to DO things that engaged listeners in person.
Before too much of Talk Radio succumbed to caricature monologue, it used to provoke thoughtful dialogue.

Read: Here’s an easy, quick opportunity to rekindle that touch-N-feel, and HEAR the people your advertisers want to meet.

The audience expects to be part of the show.

Social Media set an expectation.
People now expect to interact with their media.
Just look at that-thing-in-your-pocket-we-used-to-call “a phone.”
And the way we graze — and create — all the video content which now = “TV.”

Thus the value of high call count to Talk Radio, and the way music stations need what’s-between-the-songs to be special.
Yet-further evidence that people expect to contribute:
This item — SOLD OUT by 715AM ET — on deal-of-the-day site woot.com:


woot-sellout
And ABOUT “selfies.”

Talk Radio Stunt-of-the-Month?

Or rookie blooper?
JoeWalshAttention is currency, so jumping-in-front-of-the-parade is de rigeur if you’re yet-another radio righty working the same talking points du jour that the other soreheads are reciting.

But how do you make-the-same-old-same-old your-very-own?

Conspiracy theorists won’t buy, even for a minute, that this wasn’t a set-up…

“‘Found out if I said Redskins, or Cracker, or Redneck Bible Thumper, I could stay on. But if I said N***** or S****, they cut me off. ‘Radio station sent me home. ‘Don’t know what’s going to happen next. We’ll find out Friday at 5.”

That’s ex-U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh, now hosting on WIND/Chicago. It’s a Tweet that followed — you guessed it — management clipping Walsh’s microphone, after he reacted to the latest chapter in the unremitting controversy surrounding the name of DC’s NFL team. In this case it was the trademark revocation that had Washington-area garage silk-screeners working overtime.

After-which — of course — came The Meeting.
Then — yep, The Announcement — written in promo copy style, from the GM:

“Yesterday AM 560 The Answer’s Joe Walsh conducted a segment of his show regarding the recent controversy about the name of the Washington Redskins. During the segment Joe intended to cite several common racial slurs as examples. He did not in any way use them in a defamatory or derogatory manner, simply as examples. However, we did not allow them to go on the air. AM 560 The Answer has a policy of not using certain words on the air that are highly inflammatory and offensive even in the context of a discussion of why those words are offensive. We will continue that policy. Joe Walsh will be back on air tonight at 5PM.”

During his one-and-done term in Congress, Walsh (R-IL) was already in shock jock mode, with a blooper reel of sound bites, sometimes shrieked.
Example: When asked whether a woman should be allowed to have an abortion if her “life is at issue:”

“There is no such exception. With modern technology and science, you can’t find one instance.”

WHO KNOWS if this was a stunt, or a radio rookie blooper?
OR…possibly…nimble management turning-lemons-into-lemonade?
Walsh, his boss, and any others there in-the-loop, all-of-whom P.T. Barnum would congratulate in either case.

Talkers/NY 2014

bizarreEveryone-who’s-anyone in Talk Radio was there.
If you couldn’t be, see my real-time Tweets @HollandCooke

And read my notes — from Talkers/NY and a great New Jersey Broadcasters’ Association convention — in a sure-to-be-meaty July HC newsletter.

And just this once, a freebie…
Download my June newsletter, distributed at Talkers/NY.

“One of the great voices of American broadcasting”

“It was wholesome, peppy, a little showbiz, with a timbre and cadences that were instantly recognizable and universally understood. His voice meant that you were in the hands of a rock-and-roll professional of the old school.”
The New Yorker
CaseyKasemThe father of hit radio countdowns died on Father’s Day, after a sad family soap opera tortured his final frail days. Casey Kasem was 82.
He was an interesting guy, away-from the countdown. A prominent California Republican who championed the anti-Arab defamation cause.
When I chatted-him-up in the Westwood One suite at a radio convention in the early 90s, I asked about the buzz that he was being nudged to run for Lt. Governor. “I think I’ll just keep doing what I’m doing,” he grinned.
When we hear those great AT40 re-runs on SiriusXM, we’re hearing a lost art, from a-time-when those AM stations — then Top 40, now Talk — sounded…happy.