Welcome!

I’m a former major-market radio programmer who’s been working in digital media for the last couple of years.

Because I have a unique perspective and experience, and I still love radio, I’m available to work with stations on using their digital tools in meaningful ways … to get more listening occasions, more web hits, more revenue … and to turn our biggest fans into customers for life.

Call me or shoot me an email to learn more about how I can help you turn your station into a successful, responsive, engaging 21st century radio brand!  Or, start poking around the website to pick up some free handy tips.

UPDATE 10/22/12:  I’m working on a substantial non-radio project and will be taking some time off from updating this site.  However, use the search box below in the right-hand column to search for what you’re concerned about.

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Think Quality, Your Brand, and Apple Digital Radio

Ready for some ideas on how to build your brand? Here’s this week’s Chris Miller Digital newsletter, featuring:


QUALITY OVER QUANTITY, JUST LIKE ON THE AIR

When it comes to your social media, the quality of what you post is more important than the quantity of what you post.

I didn’t always believe that, but I’m seeing evidence that what gets us hidden or un-followed is often that we end up not meeting the expectations of our followers. What people want mostly from brands they follow on social media is insider information; special deals and offers; and chance to be heard. Radio stations can also post deep, focused content about what happens on the air; for instance, if you mention in one sentence on the air that Nicki Minaj is supporting Mitt Romney, you can link to a full article on the subject from your website or social media.

It’s like the songs you play or the topics your talk shows bring up. You make sure you don’t play bad songs or talk about boring stuff. Similarly, you wouldn’t play Flo Rida on a country station. When you start thinking this way about the content on your website or what you post in social media, you start to make a change towards doing more brand-building with your digital tools.

Here’s your practical take-away: Look for opportunities to use your Facebook page to:

  • give more info or background on what you sketchily mentioned on the air;
  • give your biggest fans advance notice of special things you do; and
  • communicate one-on-one with your listeners who choose not to pick up the phone.

CONGRATULATIONS! YOU’RE A BRAND!

I know that some radio folks find it irritating when I use the phrase “radio brand” instead of “radio station.” Here’s what’s up with that.

WHAT’S A BRAND?

A brand is a set of memories and expectations in your user’s mind. There are things you have done that give them a set of memories and how they feel about what you did. Those memories lead to expectations that it’ll happen again, which is why people keep coming back. What will “happen again” is generally one of two things (or both):

  • That you will do what they know you for. This might be playing refreshing lite rock or having an edgy morning show that always makes them laugh.
  • That they will feel something they want to feel. Entertained, informed, relaxed, energized, and so forth … if people don’t feel something, we’re doing it wrong.

MORE THAN A STATION

I like “brand” instead of “station” when it comes to radio, because we have all these different platforms now that we can use to affect usage of all the other platforms! It’s important to not think of your website or social media or database emails as an extra irritant that’s part of your job.

I’ve run into radio folks who resist the digital changes over the last decade or so. Our industry has also been lobbying for a mandate that there be an FM chip in every phone. Regardless of the merits of working to keep people listening to our broadcasts, the audience is moving online. They now expect to be able to hear what you do on their phone or computer. Any good economist will tell you that you don’t want to stand in the way of market forces moving one direction or another. Instead, you want to be the ultimate martial arts expert: use the flow to digital to your benefit, rather than fighting against it.

What you do at an on-site appearance can certainly help or hinder your reputation. All the stuff you’re doing online can, as well. If you put great effort into having a great station on the air, why not also spend some time making sure your fans are getting a complimentary experience online?

APPLE vs PANDORA … OR NOT?

The news hit last week that Apple is starting their own digital radio service, which will operate based on listeners’ taste in music, and also be supported by advertising. Almost everyone I know assumed this meant a head-to-head battle is coming between Pandora and Apple. I’m not so sure.

The phenomenon of people listening to music online is not new anymore. It’s an established practice. No matter whether you love or hate Pandora, they have a lot of people listening … even though they haven’t made a dime in profit yet. But does Apple’s entry into the field mean a fight of epic proportions between these two? Think about what Apple might want from the deal. Apple is so enormous compared to Pandora, they’re probably not interested in just having a streaming music service to try and take down Pandora. Apple is interested in more people using their platforms with a product that is completely integrated with their other products. Selling more iPhones and iPads means more to Apple than taking down Pandora.

I have no idea what Apple’s online radio will ultimately be like. Whatever it is, it will be an Apple product, meaning it’s an idea that’s a little bigger than life from the get-go. They will also make sure it’s the right thing for their consumers when it comes online. This is not about competing with broadcast radio or other online music services. It’s about enhancing the universe for Apple product users. It may be that it won’t be available on non-Apple platforms, like PCs or Android phones. Apple is ultimately a hardware company; they earn the bulk of their money from selling their things.

CHRIS MILLER DIGITAL ON FACEBOOK

When you follow me on Facebook, I help make you even smarter and more self-reliant, by keeping you updated on digital developments that could affect your job. Also, when I write something, I brag about it there.

Fix Your Stream, Streaming’s Advantages, and Holiday Plans

Zooming past Labor Day weekend, here’s this week’s Chris Miller Digital newsletter, featuring:

START FIXING YOUR STREAM

Is streaming technology that primitive that we can’t possibly get online radio to sound right?

This article, “Ad Insertion Technology Disappoints Broadcasters,” says that a large number of broadcasters are so frustrated with clunky transitions and differences in audio levels that they’re ready to just play their broadcast commercials on their stream.  That would be possible only after working it out with AFTRA to figure out how to deal with union talent fees on streams, now that streaming is so common.

I’m calling BS.  I used to be a program director, and I know it’s possible to get your stream sounding good.

Here’s why it’s important that top management be committed to great-sounding streams: I knew that our CEO would listen to every one of his stations’ streams, and when he found one that sounded bad, that program director got called on the carpet.  Yeah, fear was the first motivator for me.  But after you start finding the people who know how to fix the bad transitions and mismatched levels and everything else that can and does go wrong, I got in the habit of caring about the stream.  I’d listen regularly, usually every day, to make sure it sounded good.

The only way I know to get from bad-sounding stream to good-sounding stream is to get the PD to listen to his or her stream, and critique it.  With a list of things to fix, it’s time to figure out who in the station knows how to fix it.  Sometimes, I’d go from the production studio to the engineering shop before finding out that I needed to talk with the webmaster.  Welcome to digital.  No one knows everything, so you have to work with others to get things done.  By the way, I’ve found that if you call the people who provide your streaming, they’re generally happy to help with getting the stream right, as well as digital sales issues you’re dealing with.

Having a stopset of dismal PSAs or a bad song that cuts out halfway through is not a reason to chuck streaming technology.  The streaming audience is much smaller than the broadcast audience … today.  With the explosion of listening on mobile devices, our fans will soon feel deprived if they don’t have the option of listening online or to the broadcast signal.

HOW STREAMING IS BETTER THAN BROADCASTING

No, not in every way.  But I’ll bet you haven’t thought about the things you can do with streaming that you can’t do with your over-the-air signal.

To start with, don’t go thinking that engagement only happens in social media.  Let’s say you make it possible for listeners to give you feedback on what you do … say, the option to click thumbs-up or thumbs-down on any given song or talk topic.  When they chime in with their opinion, that’s engagement!

Most streaming players now have lots of links built in back to the station’s website or social media, but still, one of the big advantages they offer is they show the title and artist of the song being played at the moment!  Listeners appreciate having that information so handy.  Sure, if you listen to a radio receiver with RDS, you can get that information, too.  Unfortunately, RDS is nowhere near ubiquitous.

There are also the sales applications.  On your stream, you can do some surgical hyper-targeting.  You can make sure a spot only gets heard by people in the zip codes around a certain business.  You can target by the sort of device on which people are listening.  Basically, you have options to make a schedule more efficient than the same schedule would be on broadcast radio.  Plus, you can offer opportunities for response with your stream.  You can make a coupon available when someone clicks on the streaming box.  You can pop up a form for someone to complete if they want more information.  A lot of merchants would find the targeting and response capabilities of streaming valuable, in addition to knowing exactly how many people heard their spot … not just an estimate from a ratings company.

You can see more of my recommendations on improving your stream here:

HOLIDAY PLANS

Christmas is still over 100 days away, and summer will still hang around for another couple of weeks.  However, I’ve found that right after Labor Day is a great time to get your holiday plans in order, for two reasons.  It gives you a chance to:

Plan out how you want to use your on-air, website, onsite appearances and social media to do whatever you do for the holidays; and

Get information to your sales department so they can begin selling sponsorships NOW instead of after Halloween.

How you choose to do the holidays on your station is your call.  Some radio stations go all-Christmas music right after Thanksgiving; some barely play any holiday tunes at all.  Many have special events and giveaways and so forth that tie to the season, and for some stations, it’s a super-important time to get the best ratings they can.

This year, work to get all your platforms in the same holiday mood.  Remember the power in being able to move your biggest fans from your social media to your website or broadcast, or from on-air to on-site events, and so forth.  That takes consistency and some planning to make sure you’re not pulling it together at the last moment on the fly.

YOU’RE NOT WASTING TIME, YOU’RE GETTING SMARTER

That’s what you can tell your co-workers when they find you on Facebook.  Let me filter through the crap for you!  Every day, I post a few digital news developments that might actually affect how you do your media job.  Click here to follow Chris Miller Digital on Facebook.

What Twitter’s For, Write Right Online, and Jocks’ Facebook Pages

Here’s how your radio station should use Twitter.  Also, you’ll find seven practical tips for writing powerfully online, and some easy questions to help you figure out when personalities should have Facebook pages.

HOW TO USE TWITTER

I saw a piece recently that suggested that the way to view Twitter is as an information network, not a social network.  That resonates with what I’ve recommended that we think of Twitter as a bulletin service.  The service we provide with it is to pump out information that our target fan wants.  For a news/talk station, it might be news, traffic and weather bulletins.  For a sports-talk station, it might be sports related news, or it might be when to listen for specific interviews or topics.  For a music station, it might be when to hear something special, when to listen for a contest, or when the morning show is going to address a certain subject.

See, here’s where Twitter is different from Facebook:

  • On Twitter, it’s easy to end up with a lot more followers than Facebook.  However, the fans that follow you on Facebook are more likely to be passionate fans of yours.  There’s more sketchy and odd followers on Twitter.
  • On Facebook, it’s more likely that your links get clicked and your photos get viewed.  In other words, it’s easier to get people to take action.  On Twitter, a lot of people may see your post, but a much smaller percentage will take action on it.
  • It’s easy to retweet tweets, so when you consistently offer valuable information in 140 characters or less, people are more likely to pass them on than they are to share content on Facebook.

So first of all, if you’re posting the same content to both Facebook and Twitter at the same time, stop.  Now.  I mean it.  Just open another browser window and change your social media settings.  Tweets look lame on Facebook, and quality Facebook posts just don’t come across well on Twitter.

Most people’s Twitter feeds are a real crazy combination of different things.  They might have tweets from friends, content about particular subjects they find interesting, and maybe some funny tweets from reliably amusing tweeters.  How do you deal with this sea of variety?  You be the best version of what people love about you, in brief bursts.

WRITE POWERFULLY ONLINE

It’s been a while since I addressed how to write for the web, including your site and also in your social media.  Here are seven practical things to keep in mind to make your content easy to read.

  • Write concisely.
  • Write simply.  Don’t speak in promotion-ese or using DJ clichés.
  • Write factually.  Lean towards the truth and away from hype.
  • Write like you’re talking to one person instead of a lot of people.  That’s how your stuff is consumed.
  • Write as little as possible.  On your website, a list of bullet points is better than paragraphs of copy.  On Facebook, one clear, focused sentence is better than three or four sentences that no one will bother to read.
  • Remember to use graphics when you can to highlight your copy.
  • Edit yourself ruthlessly.  People will scan what you write, and zoom through it much faster than you want them to.

WHICH AIR TALENT SHOULD HAVE FACEBOOK PAGES?

Should personalities have their own Facebook page?  There’s no clear yes or no answer to that question.  Here are some things to keep in mind.

  • Is the personality or show one of the big reasons people listen to that station?  The bigger they are, the more it makes sense for them to have their own Facebook page.
  • Is the personality or show willing to provide content throughout the day?  If they’re willing to make their page “the show that never ends,” it might make sense.
  • Is your station one where there are some real differences in style or content from daypart to daypart?  Personality Facebook pages make more sense for a show that has something unique or special going for it. especially for talk show personalities.

It’s easier for a jock or personality to be perceived as a Facebook friend than it is for a brand, so air talent content can get a little looser and more personal than you would want to do with the Facebook page for a full radio station.  On the other hand, there are times when I have seen jocks muddy the station’s waters, by not contributing to the station’s page.

By the way, if you’re an air talent and you’re keeping your own professional Facebook page, don’t get caught up in the issue that’s caused conflict at some stations.  The company that owns your station may own the rights to your page, so if you get laid off, you will have to turn over control of it to your former employer.  There have been some personalities who have put a lot of work into building their Facebook page.  When they’ve gotten laid off, they haven’t been able to keep up with their fans; instead, their former employer can approach those people about listening to whoever’s replacing that laid-off jock.  This might be something you want to look into so you avoid trouble in the event of a job loss.

DIGITAL NEWS PICKED FOR YOU

Let me filter through the crap for you.  Every day, I post a few digital news developments that might actually affect how you do your media job!  Click here to follow Chris Miller Digital on Facebook.

A New Tool; Who Should Post; and A Sports Social Winner

Here’s your weekly Chris Miller Digital newsletter, including a helpful hint about a new tool to optimize when your social media gets posted; some guidance about who should be posting for you; and a look at how CBS’s all-sports station in New York is winning with social media.

A NEW HELPFUL TOOL

I’ve been using HootSuite’s AutoSchedule feature for the last couple of weeks, and I like it.

HootSuite is an online program through which you can manage your social media activities.  It lets you post content to one or multiple Facebook and Twitter accounts.  HootSuite explains that their new AutoSchedule feature “automates and optimizes” when your content gets posted.  You’re not stuck using it every time, either; you can pick and choose whether you schedule a social media post to show up at a particular time of your choosing, or whether you want to AutoSchedule it.

I’m geeky enough that I like to get under the hood and understand how things work.  I haven’t found that information yet.  I’m a little uncomfortable not knowing it, but I’m happy with a noticeable-while-not-dramatic increase in engagement that I’m seeing as a result of using it.  I believe what’s going on is that HootSuite can figure out when the followers of each channel I post to tend to be online, and they focus on that window of time.

On Facebook, especially, there’s a big, silent issue of who sees our posts.  To begin with, when you post on your station’s Facebook page, maybe a quarter or fewer of your page’s followers actually get to see any given post!  So, if you post at a time when they’re not there … well, you can’t get engagement or build your brand if people don’t see your content in the first place.  I believe that Facebook only shows your posts to a fraction of your members because they want you to buy advertising.  I’ve never seen that confirmed, however.

Twitter doesn’t hold back some of your posts like Facebook does.  However, if you follow quite a few accounts, it moves much faster than Facebook.  Thus, it’s easy for your most recent post to move quickly down the feed so a lot of your fans never get to see it.

Being seen is good.  Until that happens, you’re spinning your wheels.  You wouldn’t do a huge on-air giveaway in the overnight show; no one’s there.  My experience tells me that HootSuite’s AutoSchedule feature helps assure you that you get seen by your fans when they tend to be online.

WHO SHOULD BE TWEETING AND FACEBOOKING FOR YOU?

Please don’t tell me you gave that duty to an intern, because she’s young and therefore understands social media.

My friend, if what you do at work causes you to affect either listeners or clients, you are in the Branding Department.  It doesn’t matter if you are talking to thousands at a time or one person at a time, you have the power to affect people’s feelings and memories about your station.  If you would not put a total newbie on the air because they don’t know enough about how to talk to people, why would you let them “broadcast” on your station’s Facebook page?

I don’t mean to get preachy, but with every tweet or Facebook post, you have the opportunity to get even more loyalty, listening or web hits from your audience.  To make your social media instantly more brand-building, think about:

  • Who on the staff really understands the target audience? (It’s more than just “Who likes to Tweet?”)
  • Whose job is it to watch the feed, reply ASAP to listeners, and check what’s working?
  • What types of content will you post that fit with your fans’ expectations?

Social media is advanced enough now that you can use a tool like HootSuite’s AutoSchedule (above) to spread your content out throughout the day, so that the best person or two can focus on it … after management first sets the mission and the direction.

SOCIALLY, A GOOD SPORT

CBS’s sports talk WFAN/New York, the original all-sports station, is a good study in social media focus and consistency.  They bring  powerful, brand-related content to their Facebook and Twitter feeds in a way that should build stronger bonds with their biggest fans.

You’ll see on their Facebook page that their content is all about sports.  Virtually every post has some piece of information, linking to valuable content on the local CBS site, so they get credit for all the web hits.  They usually also ask a pretty specific question about the content.  Being specific is good.  A question like, “What do you think of the Jets’ offensive line?” is more likely to get good engagement and conversation that a more general, “What do you think of the Jets’ chances this year?”

Meanwhile, their Twitter feed is just as focused.  For radio, Twitter is great as a bulletin service.  If it has to do with New York sports, or if it’s important in the sports world in general, there’s a tweet about it from WFAN.  As far as I can tell, they don’t clutter it up with non-sports content, which probably only helps build the loyalty of their hard-core followers.

I think we’re looking at the social media of the future here.  There’s a smart awareness of how people use both Facebook and Twitter, and they’re posting strong, appropriate content for each.  They’re always talking to their fans about what their fans love about them.  Nice job.

EFFICIENT WAY TO KEEP UP ON DIGITAL

Let me filter through the crap for you.  Every day, I post a few digital news developments that might actually affect how you do your media job!  Click here to follow Chris Miller Digital on Facebook.  You can also keep up with what I write for Radio Ink here.

Your Change, Wimpy Words and Social Graphics

Here’s your weekly newsletter from me … this time, about small but powerful changes, wimpy web words, kicking butt with graphics in social media, and more.

REAL, SMALL, DAILY CHANGE

I’ve been lucky to be involved in a lot of interesting, exciting changes in my career, and there’s one thing I’ve learned from it: the most important changes are the ones that start small, and keep creating more change.

Kaizen, which was first used by Japanese businesses, is a daily process of constant improvement. Basically, you always look for ways to change what you’re doing for the better. There are a handful of steps involved in doing it so you’re not impulsively just trying stuff. I love the attitude, and it’s something that I think the best radio stations do all the time. When you get to go home every day after making something better, you’ve done a good day’s work.

Almost all of us work with a structure where there are things that we don’t have the power to change, and we do have the power to change other things. How we look at these is important. Often, the things we don’t have the power to change cause us frustration, and the things we do have the power to change are things we do by rote without giving them much thought.

If you think about it, the things you CAN change are the things that give you power. What can you do that you can systematically alter, and then evaluate how the change you made worked? This is a way that you can “be the change” for yourself and your co-workers. One person trying new things with a positive attitude can be much more inspirational than anything that top management says from on high.

A great place to start is when something doesn’t work like it’s supposed to. Stop, and don’t start judging others; instead, think, “What could I do right now that might change this situation?”

Here’s how this relates to your digital tools: we’re all still writing the book on how best to integrate our content across our broadcast, stream(s), website, social media, database email, texting, on-site appearances, and so forth. Consciously try stuff, measure it (does it get you closer to your goals?), and discuss it. If it helps you, keep doing it. If it doesn’t, try something else.

SEMI-USELESS WORDS

Don’t let your website be the dude on the left!

Podcast. On Demand. Download.

You see these words at lots of radio websites, and I’m convinced they’re weak words. The features they represent aren’t weak … but the words are.

First of all, podcasting, on demand features and downloads are all completely mainstream. There’s nothing about them, per se, that make YOU special. What’s special is what you do with them. So, let’s promote these special things we do with words that have some power … words that mean something to our fans.

PODCASTS

Let’s say you take your entertaining morning show and offer it as a podcast (or a set of podcasts). That’s a good thing to do. But don’t call it a podcast. What are you really offering?

  • A chance to enjoy what you missed or re-enjoy what you heard
  • A chance to share with others what you liked
  • A chance to save for later what you think you might like

Some broadcasters don’t offer already-broadcast content as a podcast, because they want to force listening to the radio. What I observe, instead, is that offering this content builds greater loyalty among your P1s. Listeners don’t seem to distinguish that much between different ways to hear the things they like. They’ll use what works. It’s a world where content is offered different ways for their convenience, and if you choose not to do it that way, they may see you as backwards and unhelpful.

ON DEMAND

“On demand” is like saying, “our trucks regularly bring our product to the store.” It’s not really a reason to buy that product. What’s the benefit to your fans in you having content on demand? You could call the On Demand section of your website “Special Extras” or “Bonus Listening” or something that shines a light on the specialness of the content, not the means of delivery.

DOWNLOAD

If you offer a special download from your website, don’t call it a download. Call it a song, or an interview, or video, or whatever it is. It’s 2012, and downloading is not the hot new thing. “Have you heard the new download from Radio 108?” is something that no listener has ever said.

By the way, don’t ever use the word “content” with your listening fans, either. Sure, content is what you crank out all the time, but no one is going in search of general, undifferentiated content. Using the word “content” to describe to your listeners anything you do is as clueless as those commercials that still use the phrase, “for all your (business category) needs.”

WINNING SOCIAL GRAPHICS

I thought I’d have a glance at what some of the big digital providers of audio entertainment were doing in social media … folks like Pandora, Stitcher, iTunes, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, Spotify … you know, those people!  I started looking and was, frankly, not impressed by a lot that I saw.  Then, when I got to the iTunes Facebook page … wow.  They are leading with great, eye-catching graphics.  Their content is very noticeable and visually compelling, whether you look at it on their timeline, or as it comes up, piece by piece, in your news feed.  It’s not that any one post is particularly beautiful; it’s that their baseline standard is a lot higher than what’s posted by most other brands, in any category.  See for yourself:It’s all clean, consistent, colorful … a pretty powerful combination.  What could you do to set yourself graphically apart from your competitors?

HOW DIGITAL HELPS GET THE RATE

John Dickey of Cumulus says that one of his big missions is getting rates up at his stations.  Did you know that there are some ways that digital revenue can help radio’s perceived value?  For one, your clicks are real, while your ratings are just … estimates.  Furthermore, with multiple platforms, you can move people from one to another, creating more “time spent enjoying content” among your fans.  Read my latest piece for Radio Ink:  How Digital Helps Get the Rate.

CHRIS MILLER DIGITAL ON FACEBOOK

When you follow me on Facebook, I help make you even smarter and more self-reliant, by keeping you updated on digital developments that could affect your job.  Also, when I write something, I brag about it there.

Why Being Real Works, How to Work Smarter/Less, and A Social Role Model for Personalities

Plowing through the dog days of summer, here’s this week’s Chris Miller Digital newsletter, featuring:

Remember, too, you can keep up with lots of digital news to make media folks smarter at the Chris Miller Digital page on Facebook.

KEEPING IT REAL.  REALLY.  HERE’S WHY

Yeah, it’s tongue-in-cheek.

“When in Rome, do as the Romans do.”  You talk one way to people on the air.  You talk to them a totally different way if you meet them one-on-one at a station event.  What should your tone be when you talk with people in social media?

First of all, the above is a hint.  You talk with people on Facebook and Twitter.  These are your super-duper-P1s, who not only listen to you more than any other station … they also visit your website and follow your social media.  These folks are hard core for what you offer!

Here’s one way to treat them special.  Talk TO them, not AT them.  When you give them the feeling that they’re behind the curtain with you instead of sitting out front with everyone else, they feel special.

Part of keeping it real is not manipulating them.  When you post in social media, you should have a purpose.  That might be showing them some content, or perhaps giving them information about how to enjoy your station.  Whatever it is, let your internal BS detector be your guide.  It’s great to ask them questions, but do so to really be entertaining or interesting or curious.  If you start to write a question, ask yourself if you really care about what you’re asking.  If you don’t, don’t ask it.

We’re inundated by more and more marketing messages all the time.  As a result, people have gotten more picky about what they’re going to pay attention to.

You might post on Facebook, It’s National Hot Dog day!  We love hot dogs!  LIKE or SHARE this if you do, too!  If it shows up just below something totally heartfelt from a real-life friend, you look like a total jive-ass bozo.  It’s good if you get through the day without looking like a jive-ass bozo.

HERE’S HOW TO WORK SMARTER IN SOCIAL MEDIA

We’re working harder and harder all the time.  It only feels natural, when it comes to our web content and social media, to find more and more stuff to post.

If you want more impact and better results, here’s an idea:  start playing a little hard-to-get.

If you’re like many media brands around the country, right now you’re working to always have something out there on social media, and to be adding more and more content to your website all the time.  I have some bad news and some good news.  The bad news is that much of what you’re posting may not be helping you.  It takes deep, focused content to teach your fans what your brand is all about.

The good news is that you know how to do “deep, focused content.”  If you work for a radio station, it’s not like people turn you on and ANYTHING might be on the air.  You stick to a limited scope of what’s possible.  That makes it more likely that you’ll satisfy your listeners when they turn you on.  They have expectations … and you meet them.

So, online, on your website and in your social media, they are sorta hoping for some special guidance about what you’re gonna do that they might enjoy.  They’d also like deeper, more focused content that fits with what you do on the air.  That content might be about what they hear on your station, if they’re really passionate about it, like news/talk and country listeners are.  If you’re an AC station, it might be more about what your target audience is doing and thinking about (check the magazines around the supermarket cashier if you need some help with that).

PERSONALITY ROLE MODEL

Regardless of your feelings about the whole Chick-Fil-A controversy, radio could learn a little something from their Eat Mor Chikin Cowz.  They’re the chicken sandwich outlet’s mascots.  Their Facebook page (yes, the cows have a Facebook page) is completely in Cow style.  They can’t spell English worth a darn, but they’re selfishly unrelenting in their mission to get you to eat chicken instead of beef.  Honestly, these fictional cows are better at being funny (having good content) and staying on message (being focused) than most radio personalities on Facebook are.  Here’s a sample:They’re often topical and engaging in extremely brief posts that never wander away from what Chick-Fil-A is all about.

AN ONLINE PERSONALITY FOR RADIO?

I talked with comedian, media personality and “recovering radio DJ” Matt Haze about his ideas for online radio personalities … people who would be expert at providing entertaining, brand-relevant in social media and on station websites.  You can read his insightful, creative ideas in my latest article for Radio Ink.