Will Our Vision in 2015 be 20/15?
January 5, 2015
Here’s hoping our collective vision for radio will be 20/15 this year â€“ you know, those people who see a little bit better than most of us.Â For many of us, each working day brings with it the challenges of getting through what’s most urgent, even though those things may not be the most important things we’re doing.Â So, as the rosy glow of the holidays wears off â€“ or perhaps the relief of the kids being back to school sets in â€“ what are the most important things you’ll be working on as you start the New Year?Â
We’re seeing more streams of broadcast stations show up in the ratings.Â Many of those are the stations that spend additional time or resources optimizing their streams.Â How often is your stream monitored?Â If your stream runs a different log than what’s broadcast, are you running the same small group of PSA’s over and over?Â Are the rejoins working correctly?Â Is the stream a good listening experience?Â
Anyone who has spent time watching Hulu knows the irritation of the same small group of commercials popping up every break.Â And anyone who’s watched the new CBS News streaming TV channel, CBSN, has seen how poorly a major network handles minimal commercial insertions and interruptions (Can you believe the “We’ll be right back” graphic?).Â
Perhaps demand will catch up soon with inventory in all these instances.Â But while we wait, isn’t there something better to be done with those moments?Â Instead of blocks of PSA’s and commercials for the station’s sales effort, is there useful content that can be built and shared across a cluster or format group within a company?Â While the results on stations experimenting with playing highly-edited versions of songshaven’t been encouraging, wouldn’t clips of songs be better than endless PSA’s covering spot breaks on the stream?Â
If nothing else, the CBSN experiment serves as acceptance that it’s consumers who will decide what is and what isnot TV.Â In this case, it’s all TV: Broadcast, Cable, Streaming.Â And, in the same breath, Pandora (along with other streaming audio sources) is radio.Â When recruiting a music test, if you’re not allowing in cumers of your station who say Pandora is their preference, you’re making a mistake.Â
Management guru, Peter Drucker is quoted as saying, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.”Â If you don’t know the preferences of those also using Pandora, how can you possibly hope to win more of their TSL?Â Anyone who’s been watching midday ratings for stations targeting younger women has seen the impact of Pandora.Â If we’re not actively seeking out how much listening we’re losing to this new competitor, how can we possibly succeed in our battle with it?Â
Here’s to a bright year in 2015!Â May we all find time for what’s important â€“ and not just the nagging annoyances that pop up as urgent.