July 27, 2015But, Is That Radio?
A few managers and programmers continue to deny that Pandora and its peers are competitors for radio. We’re wondering how many quarter hours they need to lose to these new sources before they begin treating them as competition.
Not that many years ago in our work with television stations we’d encounter station managers who didn’t believe that streaming-only startups like Netflix were really TV. Far enough back, you can rest assured that there were TV executives who didn’t consider cable channels to be competition either.
A scan of major Emmy nominations over the last 30 years tells a different tale. In 1985 all of the major Emmy nominations were from shows on broadcast networks. By 1995, pay cable, like HBO, and basic cable had gotten in on the action, respectively capturing 20% and 13% of the nominations. Ten years ago the percentages of major nominations for pay and basic cable shows were up to 26% and 15% respectively. In the recently-announced 2015 Emmy nominations, the networks drop to 31%, pay cable drops to 21%, basic cable shows jump to 26% and streamers like Netflix and Amazon enter with 12% of the nominations.
The tremendous distribution advantage of broadcast networks has been disrupted and the pay cable operators are already offering Internet streaming options. In the manner that our parents and grandparents adapted to the idea of paying for cable reception and eventually paying a premium for channels like HBO, Baby Boomers, Gen Xers and Millennials are quickly adapting to the idea of paying a la carte for TV delivered on the Internet. It’s all TV; how it gets to your screen is irrelevant.
What drives this isn’t the technology, it’s the desire among consumers to access the content available from these sources. How many of the thousands currently getting the free trial of the new Apple Music service will convert to paying for it on October 1 remains to be seen. But, there are certainly many different tentacles of the service that will appeal to different segments of consumers.
Broadcast radio can’t compete with all these different facets, but needs to make the most of what it does bring to the table:
- Tremendous ease of use
- Huge proliferation of devices
- Solid, reliable wireless delivery for nearly all consumers
- Easy to avoid using up cellphone data plans
- No subscription fees
- Likelihood of enhanced local relevance compared to other providers
- Expertly-curated music playlists
- A tradition of hosts ranging from relatable to funny to outrageous
We can’t match the lower commercial inventory right now. We can’t match the opportunity for personal customization. We can’t match the immense variety. But we offer so many positives; it’s up to us to make the most of each one of them to compete with these new competitors. Instead of being just one among a growing number of sources to get music or spoken-word programming, we can work to offer great entertainment and a genuine experience of community to our listeners.
July 20, 2015What's the Best Contest Entry Method?
Thirty or more years ago, radio stations asked listeners to do all sorts of things to enter contests – and, if the prizes were sufficiently enticing, enough people participated that radio stations never thought twice about promo copy that went something like, ...
July 13, 2015Everyone Knows It's Whimsy
How do music radio stations and morning shows fare against Social Media when it comes to importance in daily lives of consumers? When we asked over 2100 respondents across all PPM markets in the most recent NuVoodoo Ratings Prospect Study, the results were drawn across ...
July 6, 2015Dating for Data
We’ve noted in the past that one of the great things about those who are most likely to end up in PPM panels is that they’re the kind of people who over-index on the belief that contests add to their enjoyment of a station. If you’re the kind of ...
June 29, 2015How Do You Choose the Music?
Many PD’s spend hours every day generating the music logs for their stations, working to make every quarter hour as good as it possibly can be, given the competing interests of rotations, vertical and horizontal replays, artist separation, sound coding and the ...
June 22, 2015Are You Doing Everything You Can?
Imagine you’ve just enjoyed a pleasant meal at a new restaurant. On your way out, you’d expect the hostess to say something like, “Thanks for joining us tonight, we hope you enjoyed your meal.” If she instead said something like, ...
June 15, 2015Here Comes Instagram!
We’ve been watching Instagram steadily climb the ladder of relevance and popularity among radio listeners, especially that small subset predisposed to accept a PPM or a diary. While the digerati have been crowing about SnapChatand Vine and other portals gathering ...
June 8, 2015Which Songs Fit on Your Station?
Some researchers will try to convince you that you can get a useful reaction from respondents concerning which songs fit on your station. At NuVoodoo we believe that's wrong thinking. The people who participate in any type of consumer research are called respondents ...
June 1, 2015AMT'ville Horror
Any PD who’s worked long enough in a library-based format has a few horror stories connected with an auditorium music test or AMT. Maybe it’s the group of respondents walking across the hotel parking lot chatting happily, having carpooled to the test ...
May 25, 2015Relics of the Phone Age
During the latter half of the 20th Century the residential landline telephone became the gold standard for conducting quantitative consumer market research. The home phone was very nearly ubiquitous in the US and many consumers were willing to cooperate with ...