Make These Digital New Year's Resolutions For Your Radio Station
January 5, 2016
I love this time of year. It's a time to step out of the day-to-day grind and take a look at the big picture; to think about how far you've come in the past year and about where you'd like to be a year from now.
So what would you like to see your radio station accomplish in the upcoming year?
Let me suggest five digital goals for your station:
1. Implement a consistent content creation plan.
Still trying to figure out how to tie all of your different digital tools together into one overarching gameplan? A Content Marketing strategy integrates all of the different pieces, from social media to blogging to email marketing, together into a coherent plan of action. (This short video will show you how.)
To take advantage of Content Marketing, your station needs to be creating original online content - blogposts, podcasts, videos, etc. - on a regular basis. This is a daunting task, but you don't need a big staff or a large budget to make it happen. The key to creating content is to start with modest goals - one blogpost a week to start - and then slowly build up. You build habits by starting small and raising the bar as you go.
2. Set up a dedicated time each week to review and discuss your web strategy.
What you put on the web to engage your audience deserves as much thought as what you put on your airwaves. This year, set up a weekly meeting to review, discuss, and plan your digital strategy. Make sure you have all the appropriate staff members in the room - your webmaster, your content creators, etc. During the first half of the meeting, go over "old business": review metrics and analytics from the previous week so you can see what's working on your website and what can be improved. Spend the second half of the meeting on "new business:" planning out the content that you will post on your website in the week ahead.
3. Use your airwaves to drive traffic to your website.
We're constantly telling advertisers about the promotional power of radio, yet so few stations use their own airwaves to drive people to their website. It's time to practice what you preach.
Set up easy-to-remember vanity URLs for key pages on your website and promote them over the air. Use sweepers to drive people to your /concerts, /contests, or /playlist pages. Have your on-air personalities direct audience members to specific pages as well.
4. Conduct a website usability test.
What do people actually do when they visit your website? This year, let's find out.
A Website Usability Test is a simple test to figure out what tasks people have a difficult time performing when they come to your website. It will let you know if they're getting hung up when they try to learn more about the morning show, enter a contest, or stream the station.
The test is simple to conduct: One at a time, sit three different people in front of a browser. Ask them to perform basic tasks on your website while thinking out loud. Watch to see what gives them difficulty. You'll quickly discover a number of small changes that you can implement which will make your site easier to use.
5. Convert more of your website visitors.
Driving people back to your station's website is only the first step. Once they're there, you want them to accomplish a goal. Your site can have multiple goals, such as getting people to sign up for the email list, stream the station, or enter a contest. If you haven't already done so, draw up a list of goals for your website. What do you want people to do when they come there?
Every time somebody completes one of these goals, it is called a conversion. You determine your conversion rate by dividing the number of conversions by the number of visitors. For example, if ten thousand people visit your website this month, and one hundred of them enter a contest, you have a 1% conversion rate. The higher your conversion rates, the better.
This year, experiment with ways to improve your conversion rates. What happens to the conversion rate if you move the streaming button from your sidebar into the website header? What happens if you shorten the website registration form? What happens if you move the 'Advertise' link from the footer of your website to the main menu? Experiment and track the results to increase your conversion rate.
Good luck and have a great 2016!