New Listeners … or Used Listeners?

I was messaging with someone I have a lot of respect for when it comes to social media, and he brought up something I’ve been asked a few times recently.

Basically, should you … could you … be using Facebook to pick up new users for your media brand?


I’ve been a radio program director since the 80s.  For years, we’ve known that a small group of listeners did the bulk of listening to our stations … yup, the ol’ 80/20 rule.  In the same way that sales people like to sell to the clients they already have (’cause they’ve already shown they’re willing to buy from us), it’s great to be able to communicate directly with those heavy users.

Until now, we didn’t have a really efficient, easy, inexpensive way to talk to those folks.  Now they’re “liking” us on Facebook.  That’s what I think social media is great for when it comes to radio … talking to heavy listeners.

But what are you gonna tell ’em?  You want to focus on stuff about your brand.  Figure out what they love, and what they might give you extra listening occasions for.  New songs or special music features … extra chances to win, or knowing exactly when to listen (I mean EXACTLY) to win … or even opportunities to help control what happens when on your radio station.


Good radio brands that get strong ratings are focused, targeted, and consistent.  Used to be, we just had a transmitter.  Now, we have a transmitter, an online stream, a website, an email program, social media, and maybe even texting.  Are we focused, targeted and consistent across all those platforms?  Generally speaking ….. sorry, no.

If we were as consistent in all our new platforms as we are on the air, we would probably post less often in social media, but those posts would be better targeted.  People would interact with us more often as a result of them, and we would help build listening occasions as a result.  But that demands that we keep our messages consistent from hour to hour and day to day on each of those platforms.  It also demands that we are consistent from platform to platform.

You wouldn’t put a station logo on the banners that you hang at appearances that’s different from the one on your letterhead.  Why would you not use your social media to help your biggest fans access what they love about your brand?  Over … and over … and over again?


Getting back to the original question, that’s how you would scoop up some new listeners at the same time.  If you are doing such a brilliant job of brand management in social media that you’re keeping your big fans super-satisfied, you’ll probably attract some new listeners at the same time.

Focus.  Targeting.  Consistency.  Yeah, the same stuff that works on the air also works in other media too!  Who’d a-thunk it, huh?


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