Sales: Turn Digital Disappointment Into Direct Retail Success

Forecast: Digital will become the #1 advertising platform by 2017, after elections and Olympics pump-up TV in 2016.
Magna Global projects that digital will grab 38% of all ad dollars in 2017, $72 billion (topping TV’s $70.5B, excluding retransmission revenue), dwarfing radio.
Has new media been over-estimated?
After bad experiences with E-commerce, some consumers have become wary.
Read: How local advertisers can exploit E-backlash.


Everybody-who’s-anybody in Talk Radio was there…
…at Talkers magazine’s annual conference in New York.
OK, ALMOST everybody.
If you couldn’t be, scroll Tweets at #TalkersNY2015, and read my notes in what’ll be a meaty July HC newsletter.

Applause to Robin Quivers, named Talkers magazine’s “Woman of the Year.”

CSPANVideo:The Big Picture: The Future of Talk Radio

WHY Rush Limbaugh is in ratings trouble?

At this point, no minds are being changed.
So “horizontal maintenance” is the ball game.

Consultant-to-English translation: Get people-who-already-listen to listen same-time-of-day more-days-per-week.
Make each day different-enough-than-yesterday to cause loyals to think they’d miss something by not-tuning-in.
Click-to-listen: Does this Limbaugh show open sound you’d be missing something if you missed a day?

Edison Research: “2015 Moms & Media”

Not a misprint: She spends $1.2 trillion retail.
And how-she-consumes-media is changing, rapidly, even year-to-year.

Read: My summary, what it means to radio.
Download: the whole thing.

YES-YOU-CAN sell The Rush Limbaugh Show.

Since his Sandra Fluke faux pas, a relentless boycott effort has scared-off big national advertisers, seemingly for keeps.
Motel 6 isn’t leaving-the-light-on for Rush.

Many of these dollars fled to Sports Talk radio, regarded as “safe.”
Lots of radio money was going digital anyway, and Limbaugh’s gaffe likely accelerated that trend.
RushLimbaughAnd you’ve seen the ratings.
Limbaugh’s early success MADE stations. Hour-by-hour numbers made his hours look like Mt. Everest.
Now, most major market affiliates are cellar-dwellers.
Still – and I speak from experience at client stations — this show can be a local money-maker.
try_this_bubbleBrainstorm: WHO is listening?
WHAT are their needs and concerns? F’rinstance…
Sell elder care to 60-somethings with 90 year-old parents.
Read: 5 more ideas
(including one you’re not expecting to hear from a consultant)
“Many thanks from all of us on the Rush Limbaugh team for the wonderful article.”
Julie Talbott, President, Premiere Radio Networks

2 Questions Every Radio Station MUST Ask

Who do you think you’re talking to?
Yes-this-will seem like something-a-consultant-would-suggest.
But DON’T believe me. Try it.
As a group, profile your target listener, the shoppers your advertisers want to see pull-into the parking lot.
Who are your heavy listeners?

What age range? Does your format skew male or female?
Where do they live (most important Zip Codes)?
Where do they work? Accordingly: How much time do they spend in-car?
Do they own? Rent? One car? Two? New? Used?
Children at home? How many? How old?
Hobbies/activities? Cable? Satellite? Cord-cutters? Netflix?
What technology is part of their daily routine? Smartphones? Likely. iPad?
Flesh ’em out. Heck, NAME them.
Post photos, like the shot below, around the station.
Then, make them the prism for everything you do.
On-air topics, newscast story choice and copy style, commercial copy…everything talks to THEM.
We do this my client stations, and it sure does make a difference.

What is in the box?
Meet Ted, target listener of the Sports Talk stations I work with.
He’s just home from buying what’s in that box.
Sales meeting topic: Which advertisers want to meet this guy?
Pitch them.

Viva Las Vegas…

conference_notes_bubble…where it was THREE conventions in one week! The NAB Show, RAIN Summit West, and NMX.

Why are these people smiling?
Crystals APPLAUSE to 2-of-10 NAB Crystal Awards winners who are my clients. Accepting from NAB President/CEO Gordon Smith and Lincoln Financial’s Don Benson are (L) Neuhoff Media CEO Beth Neuhoff and (R) Delmarva Broadcasting/Milford Ops Manager Steve Monz. Congrats also to my alma mater WTOP/Washington, and all other winners.

Wheeler“I am used to people complaining about government inefficiencies. It is a new experience, however, to hear complaints to maintain the inefficiencies.”

In his SRO FCC Keynote, Chairman Tom Wheeler told us that policing radio pirates would not be a casualty of impending Commission cutbacks. “New realities demanding a re-assessment of how we do business. We’re trying to bring simple business management concepts to the FCC.” Wheeler itemized the overhead involved in keeping a Field Office open, quipping “and we don’t want our people in the office anyway!” He says the FCC will be beefing-up its Miami office, and that wherever they are, “every single FCC field employee will be a double-E engineer.”
READ: his prepared remarks.

READ: My RAIN Summit West notes in Talkers magazine.
That’s the short version. More-more-more in a meaty May HC newsletter.

PMS-TomHere’s Perry Michael Simon from, and trailblazing podcaster Tom Leykis, who had the RAIN Summit West audience HOWLING when he quoted his 1990s boss Mel Karmazin: “You can’t monetize the Internet.”

Tom told us that he recently sold-out a LA comedy club “at $75 a head, THREE TIMES the usual ticket price, to watch 15 of my callers perform.”

GordonSmith“Radio has more listeners now than ever before.”
NAB CEO/President Gordon Smith welcomed the April convention’s biggest crowd since 9/11. 100,000+ attendees came here from 159 countries.
READ: Smith’s keynote

HN-HHRadio people were lurking in the high-mojo crowd at NMX.
L-R: CBS News VP/Radio Harvey Nagler, Las Vegas radio/TV personality Heidi Harris, HC.

READ: Valuable tips radio broadcasters and podcasters are swapping here.
This session alone paid for the trip: My notes from the “Small & Medium Market Idea Exchange