iHeartRadio Chief Bob Pittman Talks Up Radio On Bloomberg TV
October 23, 2014 at 4:09 AM (PT)
IHEARTMEDIA Chairman/CEO BOB PITTMAN has been a booster of radio since his days as a wunderkind programmer from the SOUTH in the big city as PD at WNBC-A/NEW YORK back before he helped launch MTV, then headed to TIME WARNER and AOL. He spoke during a BLOOMBERG TELEVISION interview with STEPHANIE RUHLE at the ROBINHOOD INVESTORS CONFERENCE in NEW YORK on TUESDAY (OCTOBER 21).
“Radio is still a part of people’s lives as it's ever been,” said PITTMAN. “Back in 1970, 92% of the people listened to the radio. In 2013, 92% of the people listen to the radio. Big data is great because it tells us a lot about who those people are.”
PITTMAN goes on to explain that, “when someone listens to IHEARTRADIO digital, we can find out who they are … by behavior. When you can do that, you become much more efficient to advertisers. We can figure out what songs they like or don’t like sooner.”
Commenting on radio’s loss of revenue, PITTMAN said, “We’ve done a very poor job of explaining our media to buyers. We have to go way upstream and talk to the CMOs, the head of the agencies, those who are setting the strategy. We’re not pushing the benefits of radio enough so that people understand how we fit in.”
Asked about OMNICOM MEDIA GROUP’s decision to spend $200 million with iHEARTMEDIA, PITTMAN insists, “I came out of retirement to join this company because I think this industry under-monetizes what it has,” contrasting that with so-called “new media,” which does the opposite. “It’s all about improving that and moving quickly to do so.”