Ideas and Interruptions
March 1, 2013
By John Frost
Goodratings Strategic Service
It's pretty simple when you get right down to it. People tune to your radio station for very specific things. For successful stations that's a short list. For not yet successful stations that list is fairly Hodge-podge.
As my friend Mark Ramsey likes to say, people tune to your station for one one four reasons:
- Strategic marketing: this communicates what your station stands for; the kind of music you play, significant morning show, or values position.
- Tactical marketing: incentive to listen to the station such as a promotion or a unique event or opportunity (the radio equivalent of couponing)
- Habit: based upon past experiences and the expectation that they'll hear again what they liked before. (That reinforces the point about successful stations having a short list).
A program director and I were kicking around some things recently when it dawned on me that our random brainstorming could really be categorized in one of two ways---ideas or interruptions.
A great idea is something that captures the listener's imagination and helps convey the purpose, vision, or benefits of your station. An interruption simply gets in the way of why your listeners tune to your radio station in the first place (see point #4: habit).
Great ideas help propel your station forward. Interruptions, however, are like barnacles on a ship; the more of them your listeners encounter the longer it takes you to reach your destination.