At smart Talk stations, “It’s a Solid Gold Weekend!”

Weekends can be prime time, a moneymaker and appointment listening.
OR an embarrassment for lame-o stations who mail-it-in with weekday re-runs naïvely offered as “Best of,” and unlistenable pay-for-play hours.

NOT that brokered shows can’t be listener and advertiser faves!
Properly coached, pay-for-play experts can become listener faves. Reviewing airchecks with weekend warriors is one of the things I do for client stations.

We polled ask-the-expert show topics, and there are several topics you’re remiss without, some of which do well as pay-for-play, if well-cast.
“Which of the following topics interest you?”

Read more: Help yourself to a copy of the most-requested back issue in the 20 years I’ve been writing my monthly newsletter, a special report.
Scroll-down and look for “Solid Gold Weekend” in the column to the right.
It’s a free download, no login, no password.

Another national talker goes new-platform.

Tom Leykis re-wrote the playbook for entrepreneurial broadcasters.
And he’s getting plenty of company on The New Platform.

052114After his Fox News divorce, Glenn Beck is bigger-than-ever, via his do-it-yourself Internet TV venture. Michael Smerconish walked-away-from 60+ AM/FM stations, some in big markets, for satellite radio.
Public Radio icon Ira Glass announced he’ll self-publish when his contract ends.
Local hosts are making similar moves.
Boston sports talker Glenn Ordway recently went-there. And WGN/Chicago’s Garry Meier migrated to Tribune’s Internet sibling.

Now MSNBC’s Ed Schultz swaps his 3-hour weekday SiriusXM + AM/FM slot to go on-demand.
Video: Why this trend continues
Click-to-listen: Live radio: “Mathematically, the only people listening right now are those who happen to be listening right now:”
After Ed and I talked about his move on TV, a viewer noted on my Facebook page:
“Ed is the reason I subscribe to Sirius/XM and for myself the best part of Ed’s 3 hr radio are the callers, I like hearing the same viewpoints and differing viewpoints…Ed’s callers have always been more coherent & more intelligent than Limbaugh’s EIB callers….and Ed respects the callers, not so much with the EIB guru.”
I replied:
“A lot of people said-what-you-said about why-they-subscribed-to-satellite-radio when Howard Stern migrated there. Darn flattering to the talent! In this case, acts like Ed that move to on-demand distribution are following YOU, by not-requiring-YOU to make a listening appointment. And by making the show available on your smartphone, they put it back-in-the-pocket, where radio used to be.”

Meanwhile, Kevin Spacey & company are filming a third season of “House of Cards” for Netflix.
Stay tuned…

Dodgers TV standoff = radio cume + TSL bonanza.

Fan recalls:
“I grew up at a time when you could listen to the game by radio, so I’m reliving those days.”
Read, from Southern California Public Radio

“Moms & Media 2014″

Read: Edison Research & Triton summarize useful data on this special media consumer.

How Talk Radio is Turning-off Heavy Listeners

Read survey: Talk Radio needs more variety, more callers, more local.
Say WHAT?Pottymouth cost Rush Limbaugh ad revenue and ratings.
His own company demoted him to a smaller signal in Los Angeles, lower-rated than several college stations, and eleven non-English-language stations. And all of Talk Radio has suffered collateral damage.
Hear: On The Ed Schultz Show, we discuss how other talkers are reinforcing the format’s unfortunate caricature.

Exclusive: 2 years after Fluke Flap, blacklisters are costing advertisers Talk Radio’s clout.
National opinion survey points to “one bad apple.”

RushLimbaughRush NYC affiliate is #22 in latest ratings. Four that beat it aren’t even English language stations.
A Classical music station is higher-rated.
In LA: #37, SanFran: #27, Chicago: #19, Dallas: #21

Those are total week rankers; Limbaugh’s hours do better.
But stations-he-left are ticking-up since.
Rush spin: Ratings don’t matter

Rush Limbaugh’s ratings — small-in-big-markets – remain bigger-in-small markets…
…where advertiser boycotts remain bothersome but less-costly.
As advertisers flee, political money flows
Ad boycotters are exercising THEIR Free Speech

Were you there?

LasVegasSign98,000+ came to the National Association of Broadcasters’ NAB Show.

conference_notes_bubbleIf you couldn’t make it, here are my notes. See also @HollandCooke on Twitter.

And scroll down to jump to reports I filed for Talkers magazine, from the NAB Show and a real worthwhile RAIN Summit West. And I’ll give you the entire download in a meaty May issue of my monthly newsletter (and you sure WON’T want to miss what-I’m-already-working-on for June).

Radio’s value is “in our super-brands, our content, our personalities.”
Cox Media Group Director, Digital Audience – Radio Tim Clark, at RAIN Summit West. Also appearing there…
67% of Americans have a Social Media profile.”
TomWebsterTom Webster/Edison Research: Social Media song-sharers demonstrate “addict-level” behavior.
“It is now SO easy to create content that we’re ALL ‘content creators.’”
“It’s not enough to provide sharing tools if you want people to tell your story.” CURATE content, like a museum. Enable listeners to tell their — and your — stories, on your platform.
Success template: Do contests that listeners enter by using advertiser’s product.

Rush Limbaugh’s podcast paywall is “an outdated concept.”
Chris Peterson, Director of Operations, The Blaze

What makes a good podcast?
RAIN Summit “The Podcast Phenomenon: Capturing Listeners with Compelling Content” panelists:

  • “Have a great host!”
  • “The story is the star.”
  • Use data suggests length “around 30 minutes” seems to be habit-forming.
  • Production values, i.e., mic technique.
  • “Chatty, shooting-the-breeze informality” CAN work. But avoid rambling or users will “skip.”
MORE: My RAIN Summit West notes, in Talkers magazine.

Ben-Downs“I have now lived long enough to hear that question at the NAB convention.”
Texas station owner Ben Downs, a panelist in the NAB Show “Radio Renaissance” session, when an attendee asked about accepting advertising for marijuana in states where it’s been legalized. “This conversation is making me hungry,” he deadpanned.

EricaFarber“Radio is the original social and interactive medium.”
RAB CEO Erica Farber cited Radio Sales dilemmas:
>> “We’re afraid to ask for The Big Ask;”
>> Rep turnover;
>> “We keep selling to the same advertisers.”

Obamacare advertising dollars?
Stay tuned…

To-date, Affordable Care Act-related radio ad revenue has been what Eastman Radio President Tucker Flood called “Like-it/Don’t-like-it” messages (how-to-sign-up, and why-it’s-bad, respectively), from Exchanges, Political Action Committees, unions/trade groups, and foundations.

He told Radio Show attendees that longer-term revenue will come from private-sector insurers and their brokers and retailers and healthcare providers and pharmaceutical companies, all of which are still getting-a-handle-on what’s selling to this windfall of new customers. And Open enrollment returns in October.

Flood predicts that this category will surpass automotive, long a radio staple.

pogueHe’s witty, but he’s not kidding!
At NAB Show’s Radio Luncheon, Yahoo! Tech’s David Pogue outlined Five Lessons For Radio, WELL-worth brainstorming over conference room pizza. Read ‘em here.

And finally…
Read: all my RAIN Summit & NAB Show reports for Talkers magazine.

ANOTHER Mike…behind-the-mic?

MikeRogersAfter the recent cancellation of its Mike Huckabee Show, Cumulus announces it’s signed U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI), to do a talk show when his term ends later this year.
Meanwhile Cumulus is rumored to be attempting to buy CBS Radio, an acquisition which — at present ownership limits — would force the sale of big stations in big markets, unless those limits are relaxed.
Is it appropriate for a sitting member of Congress to be under contract with a regulated industry like broadcasting?
Click to listen: as we discuss on The Ed Schultz Show.Click below to comment.