“IS Donald Trump the best thing that ever happened to Talk Radio?”

“From a purely business standpoint – getting ratings, giving us material to use, creating interest, keeping people tuned to their radios and TVs – he’s the best thing that’s happened in years. I don’t remember anything like it.”
Talkers magazine publisher Michael Harrison, whom I interviewed on RT America.
See our interview, segment 2 on my new show “The Big Picture.”

our wide-ranging conversation about trends in radio/TV/Internet broadcasting in Michael’s podcast “Up Close and Far Out.”

What this means to Talk Radio? BONANZA,as I detail in the November issue of my monthly newsletter.


“Best Radio Show ever…”

…in the estimation of one station owner I work for, and he’s a tough grader!
Couldn’t be there?
Read my notes:
Tuesday at RAIN Summit Austin
Wednesday Radio Show sessions
Thursday Radio Show sessions
My September newsletter
NAB has archived select sessions

Listeners are “throwing darts” at your work.

Think of it this way.
Only we-inside-the-box hear our work in its entirety, unlike the mentally-busy in-car listener — or, worse, the podcast consumer whose attention span is near-zero.
Think of them as “throwing darts.” At any given moment, they tune-into you.
Is your work instantly understandable/engaging? Bulls-eye!
Otherwise, they’ll throw another dart, by channel-surfing away.

Make every…single…moment…deliver.

  • As listeners’ post-vacation lives settle back into routine — and with holiday shopping yonder – it’s real important to be unambiguous and relevant.
  • And boil it down, so when they toss that dart, they instantly “get it.” Deliver at-the-speed-of-life.
  • Thanks to Donald Trump, there’s NO shortage of material.
  • Clients who know me as a call count hawk can finish the following sentence: Dialogue makes you sound popular (which advertisers notice); monologue can make you sound lonely.
  • “YOU” and “YOUR” are magic words.
In my experience, THE – repeat, THE – most-productive aircheck review technique is “addition by subtraction.”
  1. Save what-aired as “Before.”
  2. Save again as “After” and cut-out everything that slowed-down what-you’re-delivering-the-listener.
  3. Save all those cuts as “Styrofoam.”
You’ve scripted-after-the-fact; using the talent’s own work to demonstrate how-it-can-sound-better.

Obviously, this:

  • is LOTS easier now than when I did it with grease pencil and razor blade; and
  • is NOT a do-it-yourself project. Talent won’t cut-out enough Styrofoam.
PDs who bother to coach: This process WILL be worth your time.
Tip: Use an aircheck 2 weeks old, so talent hears their work with fresh ears. Talent with PDs who don’t bother: I can help.


As Elvis sang in “Viva Las Vegas,” We had a swingin’ time.
APPLAUSE to Cumulus/Westwood One VP/Social Lori Lewis, Conference Chair, for a real worthwhile agenda.
Read: my notes, in Talkers.

DON’T Tweet like Trump.

I’m cautioning a local politician who apes The Donald’s Twitter style not to.
And – because radio talent is, effectively, “running for election” non-stop – you shouldn’t either.

4 reasons why:

  • Relentless negativity gets old quickly. We all know, and seek to avoid, someone whose glass is ALWAYS half-empty. Don’t be her.
  • Bellicose braggadocio gets old even quicker. And “I,” “I,” “I,” “me,” “me,” “me” validates two unfortunate caricatures (politicians and radio people).
  • The politician I’m warning is a grandmother; and might reckon that crabby demographic cohorts are heavy voters, which they are. But on Twitter, 70-somethings are WAY-outnumbered by younger users. Millennials are repelled by acrimony and seek consensus.
  • Once it’s out there, you can’t take it back…even if you delete-the-Tweet. For several years, The Library of Congress has archived all Tweets. And those who don’t wish you well may have saved what you uttered…something politicians learn the hard way when their words show up on opponents’ campaign commercials. And we’ve all read radio trade press reports of DJs and talkers who’ve been fired for Social Media faux pas.
Surprised that a consultant would recommend-against a success template like The Donald? He’s him, you’re not. Ditto much-imitated Rush Limbaugh. To quote Oscar Wilde: “Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.”

Entercom/CBS merger WILL change your game.

You have options.
That was my session at the TalkersNY2017 conference.
As listeners’ media consumption continues to change — and radio braces for the next round of Consolidation — I recommend how you can exploit The New Normal. And this can of beer is a clue…
That’s the trailer. Here’s the movie…

To see my presentation, send Email — even a blank one will do — to talkers2017@hollandcooke.com.
Moments later, the robot will reply.

2017 NAB Show

What a week in fabulous Las Vegas!
And it was ALL business…honest…
My convention notes from Talkers magazine:

And in Thursday’s column I promised these interview tips from Jarle Leirpoll’s session “Smartphone Video: Do It Properly Or Not At All:”