Heading Down the Holiday Stretch

Christmas is still two and a half weeks away, but holiday time is crunch time for lots of radio stations.

For those playing Christmas music, it’s the big opportunity of the year to maximize ratings, and attempt to drag some new fans into the post-holiday time when things return to normal.

For stations not playing all-Christmas music, there’s the challenge to create as many friggin’ listening opportunities that you can between now and Christmas … and get all your fans back ASAP on 12/26.

So, here are some quick thoughts for those in both categories about what you can do down the holiday homestretch using your digital tools and your on-air product … to actually maximize your numbers.

FOR ALL-CHRISTMAS MUSIC STATIONS

Doing a special December contest?  Post exact times to win in your social media.

Make sure your online event guide is up-to-date with holiday events your target audience wants to see.

Use your social media and your website to highlight any special programming you’re doing … like any commercial-free periods, any special syndicated or packaged shows, or short-form concepts you may be running on the air.  Be detailed and offer audio examples … don’t just copy the script for your recorded promo.

What are you doing on 12/26?  You’ll probably be running promos for that.  Make sure that your holiday fans can go to your website and hear samples of what you play during the rest of the year … don’t count on them already knowing.

Run a contest to get people listening the week between Christmas and New Years, and promote exact times to listen using your Facebook page or Twitter feed.

FOR THOSE NOT PLAYING ALL-CHRISTMAS MUSIC

What are you doing to get listeners back in to your brand who may be distracted by Christmas music?  Be exact about when and what to listen for using your brand’s Facebook page.  Be laser-focused on this.

Focus your social media on getting your big fans in for special features or programming you usually do … or special things that happen during any talk shows or high-profile personality shows you might do.

Make sure your online event guide doesn’t ignore holiday events just because you may not be playing all-Christmas music.

Some stations run a Christmas music channel on their website that’s commercial-free or specializes in one type of music (country holiday tunes, R&B Christmas songs, etc.).  Make sure you promote this on your air and regularly post links to it in your social media!

If you are playing some Christmas music … or doing special programming on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day … tell people about it on your website and in your social media.  Give them samples to hear, too!

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