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Friday, November 30, 2012

(TALENT) Radio's Beverage


?Recycling old ideas that don?t work might be an indication there are no new ideas.? While that doesn?t seem like an original quote, the point still holds up when radio?s punditry class are challenged to respond to the implications. That the consultants and other heavies have failed utterly in taking radio out of its five-percent-of-available-revenues doldrums is more than obvious. It speaks volumes. Yet, this grave situation gets a free pass.

The irritations coming from these sources have been blasted out for so long that all the old-school VUs within earshot have been permanently pinned. Intended listeners ? broadcasters ? have tuned out. Credentials are being questioned and credibility has been stretched to extremes. In some cases, both have already snapped like the rotted-out elastic bands holding the ol? Seinheiser-421 to the mic stand.

The number of ?emergency, stand-by, apply-in-case-of-rotten-ratings-and-revenues? platitudes that are regularly being issued by the Dover-pros would fill more space than this piece allows, but I will go through a few that fire off my own ?bulls***-o-meter." All of them, by the way, involve and include edicts to ?accomplish more, work harder, and put in more hours." They never add, ??for the same or less dough.?

I have been caught gazing skyward when I have heard this one. It is the one that triggers in me the same reaction as do fingernails scratched over a chalkboard or some poor sap of an announcer growling, ?Don?t miss it!?

?Become the ?Morning Mayor?!? they intone ? and with completely straight faces. There is the assumption here that presenting to service clubs, schools, churches, and bingo halls (not peeler bars) will ingratiate the station?s personality into a community and will result in creating new, obedient, and dedicated listeners to the show. There seems to be the presumption that the show is listenable in the first place. Also assumed is that the talent has no personal life, requires little sleep and is not already dependent on prescription or other medications. I also point out the unfounded presupposition that anybody who is working a radio show is also a refined, public personality ? one who is comfortable and functional in front of a ?live? audience.

It only takes a few seconds for a pundit to say, ?Be the ?morning mayor?.? It takes another 20-30 hours a week for a personality to even attempt to execute the order. Meanwhile, and since radio managers love to talk about ROI, this one?s a beauty that is incredibly inefficient, time-consuming, and assures relatively minimal returns. Plus, how many ?morning mayors? are glad-handing their way around their markets?

My premise: ?If it ain?t already coming out of the box, there?s no point in taking it to the street.? I can say that with some assurance as there are few who are going to argue that ?the show? is as good as it might be or needs to be. As that is more the actual scenario, it is the personality who needs the massive expert attention, training, and support ? not a few of what might be members of a potential audience. In other words: No value in prodding a (possible, maybe) audience with a rusty pitchfork if the on-air hand can?t expertly stack bales back at the barn. Plus, and this is critical: Astute managers are painfully aware their stations? shows are weak. Their hope, then, is that these obligatory, extra-curricular activities will take the place of, or mitigate, shoddy programming. (It ain?t happenin?.)

Next comes that stodgy old standard, the ?Generate more listeners? attention by creating something new and unique?-dodge. My cynical son?s retort to that kind of guff is, ?Yathink!?? However, I am completely satisfied this one gets way too much attention. More often, it only results in some spectacularly anemic and goofy concepts hitting the air ? the ones where the listeners just gaze skyward. But, they can get away with it without reprimand. Listeners can be forgiven for wondering, ?Just who do these people think they are dealing with??

Radio does not need to produce one more, original content idea. What radio needs to learn is how to deliver what they already have with more clarity,  more appeal, and more influence. This includes on-air presentations, commercials, and promos. At this stage of the game, Process is more important than Content.

Indeed, underlying all of this is the toxic tradition of radio folks presuming their audiences are actually credulous, inept slugs with little capacity for critical thinking or the ability to recognize when they are being patronized. Presuming the exact opposite is equally dangerous. But, I do maintain audiences are not as cretinous a group as we treat them.

Now for the latest ? having to do with the resources that will be (allegedly) saving our sorry butts: online and social media. I?m willing to grant that a jock?s real-time access to social media and online resources is a tremendous boon to avoiding show-prep or some self-directed, creative thinking. Even so, radio stations? online experiences come with new and massive responsibilities. Keeping up the blogs, editing out or attempting to ignore the flaming and/or incriminating tweets, emails and Facebook, drive-by assaults that require just a tad more time and effort are all relatively new responsibilities. All of this online effort, however, comes at the expense of the quality of the on-air experience. Plus, the taking of listener comments way too seriously generates an enormous amount of paranoia at the stations. As a source of legitimate or worthwhile ?research," online input is? uhhh? crude and iffy.

Now, I am told that, apparently, many on-air folks have much more time on their hands because of massive music sweeps and interminably long, commercial, chicken dropping fusterclucks. Working the online portions at least allows for duties in which the talent can be engaged that don?t include trashcans and cleaning supplies.

Further, there is still that other segment of the industry ? those who insist on only accentuating the positives and disregarding the negatives. They are, I suggest, engaging in a strategy for avoiding development and for ensuring ongoing disasters. They claim that all concerned would be better served by concentrating on success stories ? those situations where radio has proven to be a worthwhile investment for this or that advertiser. I get that. I mean, we still do manage to scrounge up that big ol? five percent of revenues for ourselves. Yet, the refusal to consider criticisms and the offerings of alternatives has been the bane of this industry.

Having the cheerleaders shaking those pom-poms might be a welcome divergence and a small entertainment. However, our team is still getting hammered. Ours is an ?O-fer-forever? squad. Other media appreciate our mailing in the two points.

The re-cycling of old material has failed. It?s got to be back-to-basics for us. For there to be a benefit, however, those basics had better be new, and they had better be stronger! And, I might add, they had better lead to a far more efficient and appealing form of radio.

Typically, it?s ?the other guy? who has been drinking the Kool Aid. I submit the old, tired clich?s being offered by programmers, consultants, and pundits are making for a unique beverage ? a Kool Aid whipped up exclusively for radio. And how we do keep chuggin? it back.

Ronald T. Robinson has been involved in Canadian Radio since the '60s as a performer, writer and coach and has trained and certified as a personal counsellor. Ron makes the assertion that the most important communicative aspects of broadcasting, as they relate to Talent and Creative, have yet to be addressed. Check out his website

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Arbitron Sports Introduces New Event Metric

November 28, 2012

Arbitron's Custom Sports Services has introduced a new PPM metric, the Event Retention Index. The ERI can, Arbitron said, provide more clarity on the extent to which audiences stayed tuned in to sports broadcasts.

The ERI estimates the proportion of a station's audience that stays tuned for the complete quarter hours during a game, relative to the average of the top 20 stations in its market, Monday-Friday, 6 a.m.-7 p.m. An ERI of 120 would indicate listeners are 20 percent more likely to stay tuned for all 15 minutes of a quarter hour than the average of the top 20 stations.

Arbitron Sports Manager Chris Meinhardt said, "The Event Retention Index can provide tangible evidence that people who listen to sports broadcasts 'stick around' during games and are more likely to be exposed to advertising during the broadcast."

Arbitron measured ERI during the 2010 Major League Baseball season, and found that people who listened to play-by-play were more likely to stay tuned for a complete quarter hour than listeners to typical programming among the top 20 stations. For example, people who listened to an average San Diego Padres game were 31 percent more likely to listen for the complete 15 minutes compared to the top 20 stations.

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Anne Doyle Moves Up At Research Director

November 28, 2012

Research Director Inc. promotes Anne Doyle to production manager, moving up from programming research consultant. In her new role, she'll lead a team that analyzes audience estimates and provides sales and programming consulting. Doyle has been with the  consulting firm since 2007 and before that worked as marketing manager for  an independent publisher and in the promotions department at WBIG-FM/Washington.
Research Director Inc. Managing Partner Marc Greenspan said, "Anne has worn many hats in her five-plus years with our company. Her unique understanding of our production environment, in addition to her superb analytical skills, make her the ideal candidate to lead our production team to great success.

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(SOCIAL) 4 New Local Radio Social Media Trends For 2013


If you know it or if you don?t, we have entered the era where the consumer, at almost all levels, is participating in the process of gaining access to a more pure form of control. And it?s coming to radio. This process has made its way through a variety of industries, crushing business models and shape-shifting the way businesses engage consumers and how consumers choose the brands they spend time and money with today.

As a result of the reshaping of power toward consumers, you should always be looking at how you engage listeners (and advertisers) to protect your revenue.  You should work to stay on top of and consider the trends that can make you more successful (and help you avoid disaster that often comes when consumer control takes place). Here are some trends you might want to review and consider as  part of your evolving business model as we approach 2013.

1. The Need For Consumer (Listener) Control. We have talked about this subject in this column before. Listeners are consumers of your product. They are going to gain more access to choices and easy-to-decide control over their ever-splintering attention. If you truly want to continue to capture a large audience (and revenue) with your radio station, you must step up ways you psychologically allow them to choose your product. You must make it easy for the choice to stay the same:  You. You have to understand that your control will be turned over to them at some point and your product has to be ready to be THE choice even then. You have to build top-flight content and engage in loyalty programs that give you an even more clear and defendable position and build true loyalty. That means much more than having a database. You must really connect with the important listeners in your market who influence others for your brand (or against your brand).

2. Mirroring listeners? desire, engagement, validation. Facebook is a mirror that allows consumers to get lost seeking validation of who they are and where they belong. Most radio stations don?t seek a two-way communication engagement that validates the listener and brings them closer to the ?radio station loyalty factor? that will help stations continue to dominate the market as digital changes the level of choice listeners have for audio in the car, at work, and home. If you?re smart, you can play a part in growing your brand by being the station in town that validates them the most based upon what they are interested in, how they engage, and by having a real relationship with them in social media.

3. Local Sales Blogger. Hey, it is essentially 2013 and someone on your sales team should have a blog focused on helping small business with advertising, marketing, and growth opportunities to increase their business on a regular basis. That "someone" can become known for telling the story of how advertisers can achieve higher consumer participation this year than last. Advertisers like that kind of help and it can help draw them into your revenue stream simply by being the most helpful and credible rep to them.

4. Storytelling. It?s been important since before Abraham Lincoln and it isn?t going to change. What story does your morning show tell about why listeners should choose them? How fast and easy to understand is the story your salespeople tell to clients and prospective clients about why they are in a unique position to help them be more successful in 2013? He (or she) with the best story wins. Make sure you have the best stories in 2013. It?s that important.

Embrace change and the use common sense and creativity that God gave you to be in radio to begin with. Change can be powerful. This is especially true if you adjust with it like the tree that bends in the wind. That tree doesn?t break. However, trees that refuse to bend often do break. Staying current on trends and figuring out which trend works for you is just smart business. As the disruptive technology that is invading the world at the consumer level continues, staying "in the now" is incredibly important. Radio can evolve with the change if we become open-minded about what is coming.  

Loyd Ford is the direct marketing, ratings and social media strategist for Americalist and programmed very successful radio brands in markets of all sizes for years, including KRMD AM & FM in Shreveport, WSSL and WMYI in Greenville, WKKT in Charlotte and WBEE in Rochester, NY. Learn more about Loyd here: Reach out to Loyd via e-mail HERE  Visit his Facebook radio social media page HERE

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Lawmakers Zero In On AM/FM Royalties

November 28, 2012

Performance royalties for terrestrial radio aren't even part of the Internet Radio Fairness Act, but that didn't stop lawmakers from repeatedly raising the issue at Wednesday's hearing on the bill by the House Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet.

The focus on AM/FM started early, as subcommittee Ranking Member Mel Watt (D-NC), said in his opening remarks that the exemption for terrestrial radio is "about 90 percent of the problem" with regard to music royalties. Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers Jr. (D-MI) also pressed the issue, after criticizing the IRFA for potentially reducing Internet performance royalties by as much as 85 percent and calling it the "Paycheck Reduction Act."

Before testimony even began, Conyers expressed a lack of sympathy for Pandora, whose CEO, Joe Kennedy, was set to testify. He didn't mention Pandora by name, but said, "Here we have the leading supporter of this bill, a publicly traded company valued at $1.4 billion at the end of last month, essentially urging that we consider a measure that would cut royalties and deprive artists of the fair market value of their work." He went on to say the debate over the bill "may well be the catalyst" for a performance royalty for AM/FM radio, saying, "Outside of the experts here, most people assume, listening to a song or performance on the radio, that [artists] were getting some kind of compensation all the time."

Kennedy was the first witness after the lawmakers' opening statements (in the interest of time, all the witnesses' prepared testimony was entered into the record, and each was asked to summarize the testimony during the hearing). Pandora is part of the Internet Radio Fairness Coalition supporting the IRFA, and Kennedy began, "Americans' embrace of Pandora reflects the potential of Internet radio." He said the "willing buyer, willing seller" standard created in the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act and used in by copyright royalty judges in setting performance royalties for Internet radio creates an "unfair process" in which judges are prevented from reviewing all the relevant evidence.

Kennedy noted that Pandora will account for only 7 percent of U.S. radio listening this year, but will pay SoundExchange more than half its revenue. He said, "Pandora pays more in absolute dollars than any other company, including SiriusXM, a company with eight times our revenue."

SiriusXM pays its royalties under a different, market-based standard; one of the goals of the IRFA is to put Internet radio under that same "801(b)" standard. Kennedy said the "willing buyer, willing seller" standard has been ineffective because there is no "market" for radio rates, adding that the recording industry "has actively sought to prevent any such market from developing."

Rep. Howard Coble (R-NC) later asked Kennedy if Pandora could be "profitable and successful without changes in the law" and asked how it generates revenue. Kennedy responded, "I don't think this issue is really about the profitability of Pandora," but added that if that is relevant, 801(b) would be the proper rate-setting standard, because it takes the financial performance of companies involved into account, while the current standard does not.

Hubbard Radio CEO Bruce Reese, a former NAB Joint Board chairman, testified on behalf of NAB members, saying that many broadcast stations still choose not to stream their music programming because they find the royalties unaffordable, and, no matter how much listening grows, "the cost curve never bends in a favorable direction."

He said Hubbard streams because listeners expect it, but has never done better than break even; Reese said, "The majority of broadcast radio stations and the local services they provide remain out of the reach of Internet listeners." He noted that the NAB doesn't support any particular legislation, but said NAB members' biggest concern is the unpredictability of the current rate-setting process for Internet performance royalties. Reese said reforms "must not be bogged down by past fights over controversial performance rights bills."

Asked later in the hearing how terrestrial radio differs from satellite, cable, and Internet radio, Reese noted that AM/FM radio is "local and free." He noted radio has been in place for 90 years and has played a "multi-billion-dollar promotional role in the music industry." SoundExchange President Michael Huppe, testifying against the IRFA, had earlier said music "makes radio possible," to which Reese responded, "Radio makes music possible." He said, "We believe the free, local nature of our business is very important in continuing to make music popular."

Huppe had earlier begun his testimony by bluntly stating, "The music industry stands united in its opposition to the Internet Radio Fairness Act," and complaining that the bill "blatantly ignores" the fact that AM/FM radio pays no performance royalties. He said Internet radio is "flourishing," and added, "SoundExchange wants to foster that growth, which is good for everybody."

Huppe said the statutory license has been a "tremendous gift" to Internet radio and that "the very least Congress can do is make sure artists are paid fairly for this transfer of rights." After pointing out that Pandora would pay only $4 if a listener streamed Pandora 20 hours a month for a year, Huppe noted, "That is less than some people here paid for their coffee this morning."

He also said SiriusXM, MusicChoice, and Muzak are the only digital music services not operating under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's rate-setting standard simply because they existed before the bill was passed: "They're getting this break because they've been around a while." Huppe added, "We cannot have a discussion of fairness if the $14 billion radio industry pays nothing."

Recording artist and producer Jimmy Jam, also testifying in opposition to the bill, compared an artist's payment for a song purchased on Amazon -- about 70 cents -- to payment for a song streamed on Pandora, about 1/10 of a cent. He also pointed to terrestrial radio's exemption, saying, "One business in America is allowed to take and use another's intellectual property without permission or compensation."

Conyers focused again on terrestrial radio during the Q&A with witnesses, "I'm still trying to determine why artists and performers whose music is played 24 hours a day on terrestrial radio don't get a dime," he said, calling the situation "unacceptable." He asked Jimmy Jam if it's time for performers to get "some share of all the enjoyment they're giving to hundreds of millions of people," to which Jam responded, "This is an area where it doesn't really make a whole lot of sense, that artists do not get paid royalties on AM/FM radio." Jam did say artists "like the idea" of private arrangements such as that reached by Clear Channel and Big Machine Records because they are "an acknowledgement that it is a fair thing to do," but still insisted that only Congress can create an industry-wide solution.

Rep. Howard Berman (D-CA) spoke up to call Reese "disingenuous" to talk about "finding the rate that will incentivize more webcasting without acknowledging any obligation for a performance right for over-the-air broadcasters." Berman added, "If radio stations want to be all Talk radio, they shouldn't have to pay a penny for music performance rights."

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The Disconnect Between Radio and Advertisers


A consistent theme throughout the day from the advertising community at Forecast yesterday was that radio remains such a small player in their marketing plans because it lacks metrics and concrete evidence an advertiser is getting a return on its investment. For advertisers it's all about R.O.I. and radio has no way to prove it works. On the other hand, radio executives continue to say radio's 7% of the advertising pie it's not getting its message out. It's the same story many of them have been telling for well over a year. "If advertisers only knew our story." The question is, who's responsible for getting that message out and how much longer can the industry just keep saying, we need to get our message out.

Horizon Media CEO and Founder Bill Koenigsberg, who is a huge friend of radio, and spends a lot of money with radio, said real growth will come when we are able to prove our results. "Attribution is key. A major radio company, after we spent millions of dollars with them, wanted to do a presentation to the client after the campaign. There were no metrics and there was nothing about how the campaign helped the client's business." Koenigsberg said proving radio works is going to be the key. It was repeated by others in the advertising community, who admitted they love Television because it has sight, sound, motion, a sense of scale and metrics.

While radio industry executives have been consistent in saying how wonderful the radio story is, how nobody can do local better than radio and how much a companion radio is with a community, nobody has really taken the lead in coming up with an industry standard of metrics to prove radio works. The advertising CEO on our Forecast panel yesterday do not doubt radio's connection to the community. They still want proof an advertisers money is not being thrown away.

Brian Terkelsen is the CEO of MediaVest USA. He has a total advertising budget of $9.9 Billion. Radio gets only $100 million of that budget. "Is it ever going to be on the plan more? I'm not sure. What's the new about radio." Terkelsen said radio has to fail forward more. You hold in your power that connection point with consumers." Terkelsen said data and analytics are driving our business more and more. Content may not be king anymore.

Koenigsberg said radio needs to figure out how to have its prom. He used the example of the Television up-front season as an example of how that industry pushes its content out so everyone can see it. Radio doesn't have anything like that. "Radio needs to figure out how to have their prom and tell their story."

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Thursday, November 29, 2012

(SALES) Do You Have An SEO Package?


Local marketers today have a dizzying menu of new and traditional media to choose from.

The new media bandwagon is a hip and exciting place to be. Virtually every business has a website today. Websites can post more up-to-date information, and they are cheaper and more accessible than old-fashioned print ads or brochures.

Many of these businesses hire search engine optimizers, consultants who try to get your Web page to come up on the first page of an online search. Others invest in expensive new software or try to manipulate search engine preference through carefully selected words or phrases to help them appear among the first in their category on Google or Yahoo.  

Search engine optimization (SEO) takes many forms, but is based upon the premise that the earlier a site is presented in search results, or the higher it
"ranks," the more searchers will visit that site.
The problem with SEO is that, while a business is trying to get their Web page to come up in the top 10, so are their competitors?it?s a never-ending battle.

Amidst all of the glamour and hype for new media, we need to step back for a moment and help our advertisers exercise a little common sense.

Although the technology may be more glamorous, or bewildering, than old yellow directories or static brochures, the basic human interaction with online directories, websites, searches, and ads is really no different.

Like the old yellow directories in the phone book, people search the Web for three basic reasons:

1.) To look up a business they already have in mind to learn more about them or find their contact information or address;

2.) To find a business in a category where no marketer has effectively established their brand and the consumer could not think of a business in that category; or

3.) To "shop" the sites in search of the cheapest price.
Intrusive media, like radio, can be the SEO in all three areas:

1.) Creative intrusive campaigns will create an awareness and preference for a particular business long before a need arises;

2.) Open categories, categories where most consumers have no awareness of or preference for a particular business, are prime categories where intrusive radio can easily and inexpensively create a dominant share of mind and share of market for businesses who aim to be that category?s leader;

3.) When prices are virtually comparable, intrusive branding and awareness can be the tie-breaker for your advertisers over their competitors.  

Advertisers who rely upon "the luck of the draw" or the premise of "first up is first bought" are tickling themselves to hear themselves laugh.

Even if a search ranks your site early today, it is a very simple matter for surfers to find and click on your competitor?s sites as well.

Smart marketers today use an integrated media approach, rather than putting all of their eggs in the yellow pages or online basket.

You need to present your SEO package to every business in your market. Your search engine optimization campaign will persuade consumers to:

1.) Not surf the category ? e.g., "furniture stores" ? but rather search a particular business name (Smithville Furniture Mart), thereby minimizing the risk of a search revealing your advertisers? competitors.

2.) Have a conscious or subconscious preference for your advertisers? businesses if they do search the category and find a list of competitors.

Looking for a consultant to help your organization introduce innovative new ways to increase your sales? Contact All of our programs are guaranteed to give you a MINIMUM 5-1 return on your investment or your money refunded.

(11/28/2012 4:29:08 PM)
I've been running the infamous hdradiofarce blog for about five years, and at one point, got it up on Google's Homepage for searches on "hd radio". It has fallen to about the 3rd page, now. I don't give a shit anymore, because it is clear that the HD Radio scam has about run out of steam. If you run a blog/website, try using this MetaTag:

(11/28/2012 10:52:27 AM)
My background Senior Manager in Radio, TV, Pro Sports and President of Digital and that might be the worst blog I ever read. Do not follow his advice. First of all if you or your client aren't using SAAS based solutions that generate revenue and leads-get them! If you don't make money from Facebook, have a strong LinkedIn, CRM, CMS etc. you aren't late to the game, you aren't in the game. SEO is organic first. Pick 10 long tail words, have a perfect website, Social Media and content.

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CEA Urges Congress To Pass Fairness Act


Consumer Electronics Association Senior VP for Government and Regulatory Michael Petricone was out with a statement shortly after Wednesday's hearings were held. He urged Congress to pass the Internet Radio Fairness Act. "Current law requires Internet radio companies to pay vastly more in royalties than other digital or over-the-air music sources. By imposing disproportionately high costs on Internet radio companies, the government is effectively picking winners and losers in the digital music marketplace."

Petricone added,"Unsurprisingly, the Internet streaming ecosystem is not healthy. Unjustifiably high royalty rates discourage new competitors and many Internet streaming companies have closed or left the industry. By rationalizing the royalty structure, the Internet Radio Fairness Act will stimulate investment in the Internet music industry. That means more royalties for artists, more choices for consumers, and more exciting new products and services for Internet music. The current royalty system is unjustifiable, and changes proposed in the bill are common sense and long overdue. We urge Congress to vote for innovation and pass the Internet Radio Freedom Act as quickly as possible.?

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Advertisers Don't Know Who We Are


During his keynote address yesterday at Forecast, Clear Channel CEO Bob Pittman said he's been making sales calls to major advertisers and the response he's getting from them is, "We never see anyone from radio." In other words, radio is getting such a small piece of the advertising pie because, as an industry, we're not making enough sales calls. "We're kidding ourselves if we think we're doing it," Pittman said. He also said radio isn't bringing enough fresh young talent into the business.

Pittman said when he goes on these sales calls he brings Clear Channel's creative people with him. "We ask them what ideas they need." He referred to it repeatedly as ideation. "We have to ask for an assignment, not a buy. We have to be willing to bring them fresh ideas." Pittman said advertisers use newspaper because it's a legacy industry. He called it a hangover. "We should be comparing radio to Television and newspaper, not to other radio stations." Pittman says radio should be a $35 billion industry, which is more than double what the industry brings in now. "We have to crush the myths about the perceptions of radio. We need to talk about how strong radio is."

Pittman said he was a Program Director in radio at age 20. "I don't see any 20 year old programmers any more in this business. We need to bring in fresh blood."

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Savage Returning to WABC In New York


The Michael Savage team told Radio Ink last night "The Savage Nation" is returning to WABC in New York on December 3. Savage will be heard from 9PM to 11PM. The John Batchelor show currently runs from 9PM to midnight on WABC. Savage says, "Returning to my hometown of New York City is a big milestone in my radio career. When I was on WABC (before WOR) I actually beat the Yankees in some books."

Savage also returns to Washington and will air on WMAL. He says, "On WMAL, I will use this gift to act as a watchdog not a lapdog." Savage is now heard on over 150 Cumulus affiliates.

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Ric Bucher & Chris Townsend To Team In S.F.


Ric Bucher and Chris Townsend will now be heard weekdays on Entercom's 95.7 The Game (KGMZ). Townsend (pictured) said, ?It will be a great honor to share the mic and talk sports with Ric Bucher every afternoon. Since Day 1, I?ve believed in this station, because day in and day out, 95.7 The Game delivers the best sports lineup from top to bottom.? Townsend replaces Brandon Tierney, who CBS just announced would be joining the new CBS Sports Radio Network morning show.

Bucher, joined 95.7 The GAME for afternoons in September, having previously served as a Bay Area-based NBA reporter for ESPN?s SportsCenter and NBA studio shows, as well as senior writer covering professional basketball for ESPN The Magazine. Townsend previously hosted The Pulse and The Chris Townsend Show, as well as the pre-game Dugout Show & post-game A's Talk shows on 95.7 The GAME.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Is Steve Harvey The New Titan Of Talk?


People Magazine thinks so....on TV anyway. In a story titled ?Talk?s New Titan,? Harvey says he owes his work ethic to has father and that he plans to continue to work as hard as he does because he loves to see the smiles his success puts on the faces of his family. Harvey also discusses how he went from living out of his car to hosting a hit daytime talk show, giving credit to faith and family for his success. The Steve Harvey Morning Show is heard on more than 60 radio stations nationwide and is syndicated by Premiere Radio Networks.

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(SALES) Improve Results With Clients Now


One of the functions that I perform in my consulting business is to travel in the field with media reps to coach and train them. I see the issues first-hand that the reps encounter day in and day out. I would like to share five practices that I have observed that can improve media reps? results with their clients.

1) Hold the Client Responsible for Their Portion of the Advertising Campaign

In selling a media campaign to clients, reps need to understand that the advertiser also has an important responsibility in the campaign. The client sets the price, the placement, and even chooses the specific product for the campaign. The media rep is responsible for promoting the product(s). The media rep does manage a portion of the campaign, yet they are often given full responsibility for the failure of a campaign. To avoid being blamed, reps should set the expectations at the beginning when quantifying the results with the customer. The rep then establishes a means for tracking the results or objectives of the campaign. They should be sure to meet with the client before the advertising begins and establish measurement guidelines on realistic product movement. In addition, the rep should use a return-on-investment calculation if possible, so the advertiser will have realistic expectations. There are various aspects that constitute a successful campaign. The rep needs to make sure that the client is also doing their part to insure the campaign?s success.

2) Bring Creative Ideas to the Client

I am surprised at how many times that I attend a closing presentation and the rep fails to include creative ideas for the campaign. The media rep is the advertising consultant for the account. One of their most important responsibilities is to make sure that they have creative in place that will accomplish the client?s goals. If the rep has completed the customer marketing profile, they should already know what the customer needs. When I hear a sales rep ask the advertiser, ?Are these ads what you need?? it is a good indication to me that the campaign is already off to a rocky start. The media rep should be making the recommendations about the advertising, not the client.

3) Do  the Homework Regarding  the Customer

Hit-and-miss, drive-by-shootings is how I like to describe these calls. A drive-by-shooting is when I see a media rep rambling on in a sales call with no particular objective. They will try and throw something out there and hope that the client bites. The client will occasionally feel sorry for the rep and toss some small buys or scraps their way. Remember that only five percent of sales reps do any homework before attempting to set up an appointment with a client. Tragic! Do not be the rep that gets the scraps.

4) Follow up With the Customer

Following up with a customer is how a sales rep earns their stripes. There are many different aspects of follow-up, but it is key to maintaining an ongoing relationship with a client. Whether it is a thank you note from an initial meeting or a return phone call on a customer inquiry regarding their ads, the rep needs to be timely in their replies. A simple motto regarding customer follow-up: ?Do what you say you are going to do.?

5) Organize Territory

 I see many reps driving aimlessly with no solid plan. With today?s gas prices, how can a rep afford to leave the office and merely drive around? Reps will miss a lot of precious face-to-face selling time by not having a concrete plan for a territory. A solid day with a well-organized call list can increase sales substantially. The key point here is that a rep?s week should be organized the previous week, not as they are walking out the door to start their day.
The success of any sales rep is a direct result of following proper selling techniques. The most successful sales reps are always measuring their customers? expectations, bringing them new ideas, following up with their clients, and organizing their territory. The top reps work smarter, not harder.

Sean Luce is the Head National Instructor for the Luce Performance Group and can be reached at

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Is Laura Ingraham Leaving TRN Today?


An affiliate that carries Laura's show tells Radio Ink that Ingraham has confirmed she's leaving Talk Radio Network as of today, but gave no other details other than to say she would not be on the air today. Laura's people were very cryptic last night, only willing to say, "she's totally keeping everything in the dark."

Dial Global is under contract with TRN for Ingraham's show. In August, TRN filed an anti-trust lawsuit against Dial Global. In September, Michael Savage left TRN and later signed with Cumulus. We reached out to TRN CEO Mark Masters Monday evening, about the Ingraham issue, and have not heard back.

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Bonneville Launches MMA Show


Bonneville's sports station 620 KTAR-AM in Arizona is taking advantage of the popularity of Mixed Martial Arts with the launch of "The Power MMA Show." The show will focus on the biggest stories of the week, the lives of fighters - from superstars to local talent and the growth of Arizona into an MMA hotbed. The show will be hosted by hosted by Jim Grieshaber and (pictured) MMA fighters Ryan Bader and Aaron Simpson.

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Cumulus Names Batson Chief Revenue Officer


JT Batson becomes Cumulus' first Chief Revenue Officer. He will oversee sales for Cumulus?s broadcast, digital, commerce, event, and publishing activities ? including all radio stations, Cumulus Media Network, and SweetJack. Batson was Chief Strategy Officer at advertising systems provider Mediaocean. He also led revenue and global development at the online advertising technology company Rubicon Project and ran international marketing for Mozilla?s Firefox browser.

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At Least You're Not in The Newspaper Business


There's certainly a silver lining for a radio industry that experiences low single digit growth every year. It's not the newspaper industry. Over the Thanksgiving day holiday, the newspaper industry reported advertising revenue dropped 5.1% from $5.56 billion in the third quarter of 2011 to $5.27 billion in the third quarter of 2012. National was down 10.4%, retail was down 6% and classifieds slipped 4.8%. Online ad revenues increased 3.6% from $733 million to $759 million.This is the 25th consecutive quarter revenue has declined for the newspaper business.

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Clear Channel's Castronovo Drops 100 Pounds

Paul Castronovo has been hanging out behind a radio microphone for over 30 years. That's three decades in a job that's mostly sedentary. Castronovo and partner Ron Brewer are now doing mornings in South Florida for Clear Channel. The duo has been together since 1991. We spoke to Castronovo about his spectacular weight loss success and what prompted him to make changes to his lifestyle.

How much weight did you lose and how long did it take you?
Typical radio guy with bad habits here. Up at 4 a.m., run out the door, eat crap from clients, or starve until the show's over. Eat a bad, heavy lunch, take a nap, eat dinner, pass out. Do it again the next day. Finally, around two years ago, the Miami Dolphins challenged me to do a 30-mile bike ride for cancer, and since my wife is a breast cancer survivor, I couldn't say no. I started out slowly, 10 miles a few days a week, until I worked myself up to do the big ride. Now, I'm down 100 pounds, and would consider myself an avid cyclist.

How do you feel after losing all that weight, compared to having it all on you?
I tell you what feels good, all the hot babes that are throwing themselves at me, it's getting ridiculous, it's a curse really. No, the truth is, I am a different guy now and tend to be a lot more active.

What's your plan to keep it off?
I've got a personal trainer that I train with three days a week at the gym. (I'm paying him, so you know I'm not gonna blow it off!). The other days, I'll ride the bike. Listen, I love to eat and drink, hell, I own a vineyard in Italy ( so, I eat healthy Monday to Friday and I go out to dinner on the weekends. It's a pretty simple plan, but it works for me.

Radio isn't exactly a strenuous line of work?
Hey, I have to walk all the way to the bathroom! I've all but banned the free food that the restaurants and clients want to throw at us every damn morning. It's so easy to slide into that. I eat every three hours, but I am eating healthy stuff. There's a company down here that delivers healthy, quality, fresh foods to my house.

Have you become a fitness preacher now?
Oh yeah, I'm annoying the hell out of my radio partner, Ron, but I don't throw it in my listeners' faces. There's nothing worse than being "that guy."

What advice can you give other radio people about how to try to stay fit and healthy at a job that's mostly sedentary?
Seriously, get the food right and make exercise a priority. It's just what I do Monday to Friday. They say 90 percent of it is diet, and I believe that. Pay for a trainer and have them help you get your metabolism going.

Congratulate Castronovo on his weight loss success HERE 

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

(LEADERSHIP) Achieve Revenue Success In 2013


2013 is a little more than a month away. By now, all budgets and expectations for next year are in place or will be shortly. Unless something in our industry has changed dramatically, everyone reading this will be asked to increase revenue productivity over 2012. Here are 10 tips to help you stay focused on achieving your numbers in the upcoming 12 months.

1. KNOW YOUR NUMBERS: Know exactly where every market, every station, and every seller ended 2012 in all revenue streams: spot, interactive, and NTR. If a market has four stations and delivered 100 percent of budget in 2012, but one or two of the stations under-performed, know exactly what the plan is to grow those stations.

2. ASSIGN SALES BUDGETS WISELY: Have a logical, variance-based budget, for every seller, in place by December 1. If your station has to deliver $100 next year, you must assign that station a minimum of $105 as a budget. By seller, station, market, or company, a minimum of a five percent cushion must be applied.

3. INCENTIVIZE: every GM and Sales Manager to insure making budget every month, quarter, and the year. Whatever the number is must be foremost in their mind all the time!

4. SPECS and GREAT CREATIVE: Be very certain every market has a great pool of copywriters and production people. If not out-source it to someone solid like Jinny Laderer at vCreative. You must be in the SPEC business and more confidently than ever before.

5. WHAT DO YOUR SELLERS REALLY WANT TO EARN? Be sure all GMs know the earnings goal of every one of their sellers. A seller could make budget and earn their $60,000, but they long to hit $75,000. GMs should know this number and show the seller what must be done to earn that amount. If you want to blow away the budget, build your sales department on hitting earnings goals!

6. RECRUITING NEW SALES TALENT: Be certain, as COO, you?re excited about every market's sales recruiting plan. What are the specific plans for building a bench of talent, weekly, monthly, and all year?

7. SALES MEETINGS: Be certain each market has a specific plan for sales meetings in 2013. If you have a GM that thinks one per week is enough, you and they, are in trouble. What?s their plan? When are they training? Who?s teaching? How often are clients joining as guest speakers? Are sales meetings exciting?

8. ARE YOUR SELLERS ASKING FOR THE BUSINESS WELL? As COO, have every seller in your company send you a copy of what they believe was their best new-business presentation from this past quarter THAT SOLD? Then read them and respond to the seller.

9. NEW BUSINESS: Have every market send you a spreadsheet reporting new business for the quarter, by station, seller, account, and amount. Share these results on conference calls. A minimum of 10-15 percent of billing should be new business!

10. PREFORMANCE RECOGNITION: Does every market have a plan for recognizing great sales performance? Every market should have a ?Wall of Fame? ? first time to hit a $25K month, a $100K month, or whatever, based on your market size. I love ?The President?s Club? concept. Every seller who hits 100 percent of their annual budget joins ?The President?s Club? earning a one-percent bonus check, an award, and recognition at the President?s Club dinner in February.

We, all, could add 30 more to this list, but these 10 can be success insurance for the new year!

Rob Adair is the President of Pinnacle Solving. His company provides revenue growth solutions, branding and differentiation strategies to radio and other industries. Adair is a former radio industry COO and Sr. VP overseeing 25+ stations and multiple major markets. He can be reached at 405-641-0458 or by e-mail

(11/26/2012 5:00:44 PM)
This column seems like something out of 1982. Point 7...Adair is advocating more sales meetings?! Seriously??!! Wow. Old school, pre-digital mentality like Adair DOESN'T GET IT ANYMORE. The key to driving more sales, and NEW sales, is NOT tying up more of salespeoples' valuable selling time with more "meetings"!! Who cares if you EVER see a salesperson, if they are OUT SELLING. And if you want to "know where someone is"...there is this new device called a CELL PHONE...
(11/26/2012 7:59:13 AM)
Only because of my own bias, I would make #4 - SPECS and GREAT CREATIVE - numbers 1., 2, and 3.
The facts include: Even if a station is number 18 in a market of 30, they still have only the creative to influence the audience they do enjoy.
How this simple reality passes the management by may always leave me befuddled.
However, if creative is agency-supplied or other-station supplied, the managers do have a handy and already-packaged excuse.

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Royalty Hearing Set For Wednesday


Former NAB Joint Board Chairman and Hubbard Radio President and CEO Bruce Reese will be radio's representative tomorrow when the royalty issue comes before Congress again. The hearing called "Music Licensing Part One," will be held before the Committee on the Judiciary which is chaired by Representative Lamar Smith of Texas. The proposed legislation called the "Internet Radio Fairness Act of 2012," sponsored by Representative Jason Chaffetz (pictured) of Utah was referred to Smith's committee.

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CBS Names Network Morning Team


Tiki Barber (pictured), Brandon Tierney, and Dana Jacobson will anchor the new CBS sports network morning show when the network launches January 2nd. CBS Radio President Dan Mason said, ?CBS Sports Radio has been able to attract some of the most renowned names in the business, and Tiki, Brandon, and Dana are just the latest examples of the network?s star power. We?ve assembled an impressive group of professional athletes and accomplished broadcasters to bring fans unrivaled sports commentary, and the most entertaining lineup in all of sports radio."

In 1998, former New York Giant Tiki Barber began his broadcasting career working for Sports Radio WFAN in New York, which led to stints at WCBS-TV, Sirius Satellite Radio, the YES Network, and Fox News Channel. Upon retiring from the NFL, he signed a contract to work as a correspondent for NBC News and Sports, primarily for The Today Show and Football Night in America, but also covering the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing for MSNBC.

Brooklyn native Brandon Tierney makes a return to his hometown in joining CBS Sports Radio. He currently hosts The Drive with Tierney and Bucher, broadcast weekdays in San Francisco on 95.7 The Game. Prior to moving west, Tierney was a popular staple at 1050 ESPN Radio in New York City for nearly nine years.

In addition to his hosting duties at ESPN Radio, Tierney also anchored New York Knicks pre-game, half-time, and post-game shows for three seasons and occasionally served as play-by-play announcer for the station?s Knicks broadcasts. His game experience also includes serving as lead analyst for St. John?s basketball for six seasons.

His broadcast career also includes experience in radio and television including the syndicated Sports Fan Radio Network, Sports Radio 1130 The Fan in Detroit, SportsNet New York?s (SNY) The WheelHouse, and Red Storm Report with St. John?s head coaches Steve Lavin and Norm Roberts. In addition, he was a frequent contributor to ESPN?s Outside the Lines.

Dana Jacobson is an award-winning anchor and reporter. In addition to her role at CBS Sports Radio, Jacobson will contribute to studio programming for CBS Sports Network, the cable home of CBS Sports, debuting in January.  She is best known for the various roles she filled during nearly a decade of work at ESPN. Jacobson began her ESPN career as an anchor on SportsCenter, and later went on to anchor and host ESPN First Take (originally known as Cold Pizza), Outside the Lines, and College Football Live.

Jacobson also has served as sideline reporter for ESPN?s Sunday Night NBA showcase game and became a well-known part of ESPN?s Summer and Winter X Games, hosting the event?s nightly wrap-up show XCenter.  Additionally, Jacobson has written for and filled in as a radio host on both The Dan Patrick Show and Mike and Mike.

After graduating from the University of Michigan, Jacobson took her first job in television broadcasting as an assignment editor at the CBS station in her hometown of Detroit. She also worked in Traverse City, Mich., and Sacramento, Calif., where she was honored with National Headliner and Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for sports reporting. It was in Northern California that she first gave sports radio a try, co-hosting an NBA show on the Sacramento Kings flagship station, CBS RADIO?s KHTK 1140.

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News Corp COO Coming to NAB Show


Chase Carey will will be part of a question-and-answer session with NAB CEO Gordon Smith during the NAB opening event. Smith said, "As a leading executive of one of the world's preeminent media companies, Chase Carey has valuable insight into today's multi-platform global media environment. I look forward to our conversation at the NAB Show and hearing Mr. Carey's vision of what the future holds for the media business worldwide."

Carey is president and chief operating officer of News Corporation, a position he has held since July 2009. In this role, he oversees diversified global operations spanning five continents, including the production and distribution of film and television programming; television, satellite and cable broadcasting; newspaper and book publishing and digital media. He also sits on the Company's Board of Directors.

Previously, Carey was president and chief executive officer of DIRECTV. The NAB Show is April 6-11, 2013 in Las Vegas.

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(SALES MANAGEMENT) The Myth Of Motivation


Was former General Electric CEO Jack Welch a great motivator? If his inspirational leadership
influenced people to do what he wanted them to do, most business people will agree to that characterization. But by those standards so too were Ghengis Kahn, Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Osama bi Laden, Abraham, Buddah, Jesus Christ, and the Prophet Muhammad great motivators.

Yet, in my view, none of those momentous figures motivated anyone. Jesus Christ and the Prophet Muhammed never motivated anyone? Preposterous! Not preposterous.*

Some useful definitions:

Motive:     A need or desire that causes a person to act (self-motivated act)
Motivate:  To provide with a motive.
Activate:  To make active or more active.
Actualize: To achieve a personal objective. 
Attitude: A settled way of thinking or feeling.
Behavior: The way in which people behave.
Back to the example of Jack Welch, by definition ?inspirational leadership? and the ability to ?influence? people does not ?provide with a motive."

For the purpose of clarity, here are the four absolutes for what follows:

1.  Management can not motivate.
2.  Management can only activate.
3.  Management can not change attitudes.
4.  Management can only change behavior.

Notwithstanding thousands of people I managed, trained (educated), consulted, and/or whom attended my seminars in eighteen countries and 49 states ? some convinced I motivated them personally ? I never motivated anyone in my life and, as a sales manager, neither have you or will you.

From this point forward I invite you to "argue with the author"? me! On the pretense I?m presenting the above case in court, you play judge and jury and decide if my contentions are absolute or not so absolute? It's your call.

Already I hear someone grumbling, "Those are just your opinions, Giff!" No, they?re not just my opinions, renowned human behaviorists still disagree for/against the ability of managers to motivate.

You might add that I?ve got a lot of nerve engaging in a debate with such credible sources as Peter Drucker, the late guru of management gurus; Warren Bennis, known for his watershed books on leadership; behavioral scientist Abraham Maslo; clinical psychologist Frederick Herzberg; social scientist Douglas McGregor; and John Adair, one of the world's foremost authorities on leadership and leadership development from England?and you would be right. Nonetheless?
Years ago, Bennis defined motivation as communicating a vision others can believe in, then helping people convert that vision into organizational gains. Really? Maybe not. Whether it?s an entire company, a given department, or a small project team, who among us can think of a single vision so universally accepted that said ?others? are certain to commit to that vision? All of them? Obviously, Mr. Bennis never managed a radio sales department.

Drucker counseled that if you "Manage by Objectives" (MBO) you motivate by encouraging communication at all levels. What if the communication is miscommunicated? The failure of a vision sent, but not received, is usually the fault of the sender, not the receiver. Wrong words and/or wrongly placed words and/or wrongly expressed words are what miscommunications are all about. Although I managed by a delineation of MBO ? MBP: Management By Priorities ? I?m at a loss to understand how encouraging communication "provide(s) with a motive."

Maslo, Herzberg, and McGregor ? the naysayers in this "Yes You Can Motivate"/"No You Can't Motivate" debate ? agree that inasmuch as motivation has to come from the psyche of the individual, motivation in the workplace (as most people think of it in its conventional context) cannot be achieved without first satisfying an individual's higher needs ? the want* satisfactions as opposed to basic need satisfactions: oxygen, food, water, shelter, clothing.

John Adair has a different take (his "50-50? rule), a modification of Pareto?s Law (80 percent of the effects come from 20 percent of the causes) in which Adair contends the influence of leaders are equal in importance to serving both need and want satisfactions. Some would say Adolf Hitler validates Adair?s philosophy, i.e. infamously ranked among the most powerful rulers in recorded history, the Nazi madman is also perceived to have been a great motivator. Let?s test that axiom in its proper perspective?

ITEM: In effect, following Germany?s defeat in World War I, the psyche of the German people may have influenced the cause of World War II more than Hitler. Dethroned as a world power, the German people were: 1. Bitter over the perceived unfairness of the Treaty of Versailles; 2. Uncertain of their future as a country without  a national identity; 3. Lead by an incompetent and unstable government threatened by Communism; and, 4. Mired in the Great Depression. Consequently, the German people were starved for leadership, any leadership! Hitler provided that with his intoxicating persona, inspiring leadership, and his incendiary oratory. But with the motive-for-change already present in the psyche of the nationalistic populace, metaphorically Hitler was preaching  to the choir.
In fact, there were hundreds of thousands of Germans not so moved by ?the little corporal." Beginning with the arrest of Hitler?s political enemies immediately following  his takeover in 1933, 13 of 42 assassination plots to kill Hitler occurred in his first two years as Chancellor,  29 before the U.S. entered the war. In retaliation to the July 20, 1944 bombing of Hitler?s bunker in Rastenberg, East Prussia, 5,000 German officers (unmotivated military officers) were executed. Less than a year later, following the liberation of dozens of concentration camps throughout Europe and the eastern territories, Hitler?s maelstrom of terror ended with Germany?s cities reduced to rubble.
ITEM: Given how few soldiers jump on live grenades to protect their buddies on the field of battle, obviously those who failed to take the same action responded to a different motivation. Assuming they were aware of the danger at the time, what motivation? Since there is no greater interest than self-interest, very likely the instinct to take cover. Either way, whether their response was motivated by instinct or by a conscious decision, their strongest motive was self-motivated.

ITEM: People who succeed in life succeed for only one reason: they can't help themselves. They have to succeed. Where does that commitment come from? It comes from within! In contrast, as an external force, there is nothing a sales manager can do or say to motivate an unmotivated salesperson. It will not take, period. And given the #1 reason radio salespeople fail during  the first year is because they weren?t fully committed to the job in the first place, uncommitted = unmotivated!

ITEM: Keeping with this theme, you didn't get up this morning to fulfill your company's "mission statement," did you? Nor did you get up for your boss or for your salespeople, isn?t that also true? No, you got up for yourself and, hopefully, for whomever is dependent on you. Is it any different for your salespeople? Increasing company sales, elevating the company?s Top Line, and jacking up the company?s Net Value are not the highest aspirations of the individual salespeople on your staff. As a consequence, management needs to come to grips with its limitations.

ITEM: As a sales manager you need to manage your sellers? behavior, not their attitudes!
Management can change behavior. Management cannot change attitudes. Fact: salespeople will not do what you want them to do, willingly, without their consent. Why? Because whereas you can change behavior with incentives, accountability systems, policies, discipline, etc., the only person who can change your attitude is you! Ditto for your salespeople.

ITEM:  In my ongoing scholarship of human behavior on the street and in the workplace, I came up with the thesis that human beings respond to eighteen predominant personal pressures ? the stimuli of atoms that prompt behavior ? all conveniently beginning with the letter "P?: ? Pain ? Pride ? Profit ? Praise ? Power ? Passion ? Pleasure ? Principles ? Popularity ? Protection ? Philosophy ? Performance ? Participation ? Peer Pressure ? Partner Pressure ? Parental Pressure ? Professional Pressure. 

ITEM: Hire self-motivated salespeople and this ?Yes You Can Motivate/No You can?t Motivate? debate is moot. And there is the irony. The success of every radio company in business today is totally dependent on its salespeople, yet only an infinitesimally small  percentage of radio operating budgets include an allowance for testing sales applicants. What better way to explain radio?s high turnover of sales personnel other than lousy hiring followed by lousy training? Note: Test finalists only; too expensive and inefficient otherwise.

ITEM: What can a sales manager do? You can train (educate!), influence, challenge, coach, prompt, push, probe, encourage, recognize, inspire, show respect for your salespeople, etc. But to achieve meaningful organizational gains, your real challenge is to activate the trigger mechanism of the self-motivated salespeople on your staff. That is activation, not motivation.


1.  Management cannot motivate. 
2.  Management can only activate.
3.  Management cannot change attitudes. 
4.  Management can change behavior only.

Finally, given how demotivated employees get when they fail to get proper training, salespeople don?t need inspiration, they need information.

I rest my case.


Dave ?Giff? Gifford/DGI ? 2012

* Needs satisfied by religion and/or religious leaders: the need or desire for absolution, acceptance, belief in a divine creator, belonging, community, communion, discovery, faith, forgiveness, harmony, healing, hope, inspiration, judgment, salvation, security, inclusion, inspiration, life fulfillment, mattering, meaning, nurturing, purpose, rejuvenation, self-acceptance, spiritual expression, spiritual well being, stimulation, support, to be at peace, to believe in something, transcendence, understanding, unconditional love, etc.

Dave Gifford has been helping salespeople and sales managers improve their skills for decades. Visit his website or send a message to Giff at

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Monday, November 26, 2012

All Clear Channel Radio Sites -- Down, Then Back Up

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Back On Line

At exactly 10p (ET) on THANKSGIVING EVE, virtually all CLEAR CHANNEL RADIO sites, but not iHEART.COM, were offline for the better part of an hour ... most were showing pages with a similar message to this:

Internal Server Error - Read
The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was unable to complete your request.
Reference #3.47a84ce.1353555368.664a90

Was there a company-wide technical issue?

CLEAR CHANNEL has been contacted for comment.

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Connoisseur Moves To Assume Debtor's Bid To Buy 10 Nassau Stations, Including WPST

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The debtor group that applied to take over 10 NASSAU BROADCASTING stations in NEW JERSEY and PENNSYLVANIA  in bankruptcy has moved in U.S. Bankruptcy Court to assign its right to buy the stations to JEFF WARSHAW's CONNOISSEUR MEDIA.  NB BROADCASTING LLC, headed by DOUGLAS A. PLUSS, made a credit bid (by NASSAU's lenders led by GOLDMAN SACHS) of $38.7 million plus $1,633,890 for administrative costs and assumption of liabilities for the stations, which include Top 40 WPST and Religion WCHR-A/TRENTON; Spanish Sports WNJE-A (ESPN DEPORTES RADIO)/FLEMINGTON, NJ, Classic Hits WODE-F (99.9 THE HAWK)/EASTON, PA; Sports simulcast WEEX-A/EASTON, PA-WTKZ-A/ALLENTOWN, PA (ESPN 1230 AND 1320); Religion WBYN-A (THE LIGHT 1160)/LEHIGHTON, PA; Active Rock WWYY (107 THE BONE)/BELVIDERE, NJ; and Talk WVPO-A and Hot AC WSBG/STROUDSBURG.

"Rather than proceeding to close the section 363 sale transaction," the motion says, "the Agent has spent considerable time and effort over the past several months in an effort to attract a satisfactory purchaser who is willing to take an assignment of the Agent’s successful section 363 bid for such radio broadcast assets. As part of this process, the proposed purchaser (CONNOISSEUR) has requested that it be permitted to enter into a local programming and marketing agreement with the Debtors for the 10 stations which are the subject of the transaction and pending regulatory approval of the underlying sale – and, hopefully, approval – of the transfer and assignment of the licenses and a section 363 sale closing."

CONNOISSEUR has proposed an LMA before closing, paying $200,000 for each of the first two months, $100,000 for each of the third and fourth months, and $500,000 per month after that until closing or termination.  The licensee will have the option to program 6-8a SUNDAY mornings.

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Florida Translator Sold

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In other filings with the FCC, CALVARY CHAPEL OF TWIN FALLS, INC. has requested a Silent STA for FM translator K206CU/MOUNT VERNON, WA, taking the station off the air due to interference with full-power PACIFIC LUTHERAN UNIVERSITY noncommercial KPLK/SEDRO-WOOLLEY, WA.

And ROCKET RADIO CORP. has filed for an extension of its Silent STA for FM translator K255AQ/STRAWBERRY, AZ due to storm damage.

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Sunday, November 25, 2012

Station Apologizes for "Racist" Parade Float


Raleigh morning man Bob Dumas is taking some heat for a float he entered in the Raleigh Christmas parade. The float (pictured here) featured a black man with fairy wings, strapped to a harness on a tow truck. Dumas said the float was "Tyrone the Black Christmas Fairy" who was going to turn "crackers" into Beyonce, according to the Raleigh News and Observer. Clear Channel Market Manager Dick Harlow apologized to the parade organizers. 

Harlow told the paper, "Some very poor judgment was used. It was meant to be a harmless stunt, and it was never our intention to offend anyone." Of course, Facebook and Twitter went crazy after the float was spotted in the parade. Even Raleigh's Mayor Nancy McFarlane posted her thoughts on Facebook, according to the paper. "Raleigh will not tolerate racism or anything that comes remotely close. This parade is a Raleigh tradition that includes everyone and should be treated as such." Dumas has been with the station for 20 years.

Read more about the incident HERE

(11/25/2012 9:20:40 AM)
I remember years ago when The Greaseman made a racial comment after he played a horrible song by some black artist and said, "No wonder they drag them behind pickups." Hilarious!!!

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Former Tulsa Personality Phil Stone Dies


No explanation about how Stone (pictured here) died and the radio station he used to work at in Tulsa, KMOD-FM is putting together a memorial. Stone's death was reported in the Tulsa World on Saturday. The "Phil and Brent Show" was heard on the station for 27 years before it ended in October (Brent is Brent Douglas).

KMOD Program Director Don Christi tells Radio Ink Stone's family is requesting privacy. "His legacy in this market is unequaled. Over 30 years at the helm of the KMOD Morning Zoo, over 27 of those with co-host Brent Douglas. The two of them known worldwide for their Roy D Mercer character. Dominant ratings winners up until their retirement two months ago. Biggest Radio icon in Tulsa history and a huge loss to the KMOD family, Clear Channel Tulsa and his legion of fans." He leaves behind 5 kids and 3 grandkids. Services are pending.

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Morning Team Leaving Bell Media in Detroit


The popular "Dave and Chuck" (Dave Hunter and Charles Urquhart) have been heard on Bell Media's 89X in Detroit for the last time. The duo posted a cryptic message on their Facebook page but GM Eric Proksch tells the Detroit Free Press they left to take another job. "They've accepted a job offer from another radio station. We're disappointed. That's the radio business." Proksch said Cal Cagno is the interim PD and will do the morning show next week.

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How I Got Into Radio -- Joe Schwartz


With Friday being an extended Thanksgiving weekend for most people, we're  running our special feature from Lisa Miller today. This week, Miller spoke with Cherry Creek Broadcasting CEO Joe Schwartz about his early days in the radio business. Cherry Creek now has a stable of 60 stations in eight states in the western part of the United States. But, as Schwartz tells Miller, radio wasn't his first choice. He says he always wanted to be a teacher.

How I Got Into Radio
by Lisa Miller

One of the unusual factors of this business is that a rare few people stay in your life and career from the beginning (and hopefully to the end), and one of those people is Joe Schwartz. Joey, as I?ve always called him, is one of the funniest, warmest, hardest-working, sales-driven professionals I have worked with. Steve Goldstein calls him, ?the funniest guy in the business," but to me Joey is smarter than he is funny. He has always seen the future well before anyone else. He has gone about ownership in an unconventional but admirable way; the old-fashioned creative way. Not to be taken lightly, Joe can smile in your face, make you feel extremely comfortable, and say "no" to you in the most frighteningly delightful manner. And when he says no he follows it up with sound reasoning. He?s tough as nails, and as warm as a memorable summer night. He is one of my favorite dinner companions and if you don?t know Joe, I urge you to make a point of reaching out; he?s the definition of  ?added value."  

So, Joe, how did you get into radio?
I can't say that I always wanted to be in radio. At one point I wanted to teach English to high school kids. At another time, since I was an English major in college, I thought I?d be a writer. But radio? As a kid, I was an avid listener of AM Top 40 radio in New York City, and followed all of the popular jocks. But, though I fell asleep every Tuesday night listening to ?Cousin Brucie? count down the weekly Top 40 on WABC, I wasn't one of those 15-year-olds who hung around radio stations looking for a way to get on the air. Instead, at 15, I was, mostly, a jock, and hung around schoolyards and gyms trying to hone my skills to become the starting point guard for the New York Knicks.

My first gig out of college was in the insurance business, which I really hated. I worked with my younger brother in that business and, even though we went on to start our own insurance agency, we sold it shortly thereafter since it wasn?t a "fun" business. After that, I moved in with my older brother in NYC where he was a media buyer at Ketchum, which was a pretty big ad agency. In those days, Ketchum was unusual in that the media director, Dan Borg, liked to hire young, aggressive male college grads when the industry standard was to hire mostly women to become buyers. In any event, my brother left the agency business to sell for McGavern-Guild, and when his assistant was promoted to replace him, the media director asked me if I wanted to join the agency as assistant buyer/media estimator. So for a whopping $8,000 a year, I took the job. Within a short period of time, I was promoted to media buyer. At the ripe old age of 23, I became a major radio buyer in NYC, and spent a great amount of money, locally and nationally, for accounts like Ford, Westinghouse, and Air Jamaica, which spent millions in radio. At $11,000 a year (they gave me a raise), I had exposure to all of the major networks and rep firms as well as access to every sporting event, rock concert, and Broadway show in NY.

All of the local and national reps called on me and most of them made a great deal more money than I did. I knew I could do a better job selling than 99 percent of the reps calling on me. So, within a year, I targeted the companies I wanted to work for and finagled a job in radio sales. Since I did business with almost every company, I discovered that I really liked the way CBS operated and was known, at that time, as the "Tiffany Network." In the late 70s, CBS recognized that FM was the way of the future, and went about creating a rep firm to represent all of the owned and operated CBS/FM stations as well as other non-CBS stations in major markets. I pitched the job aggressively and was hired as one of the five original reps in the NY office of the new CBS/FM National Sales. Being a national rep gave me the background to learn what was happening in all markets and gave me experience and expertise with every type of format and exposure to different radio ownerships and management styles. It prepared me well for my move over to the local side three years later and prepared me for my future in radio station management and ownership.

Reach out to Joe Schwartz to give him grief about how he got into radio:

Lisa Miller is the President of Miller Broadcast Management in Chicago. She's also one of Radio Ink's Most Influential Women in Radio. Miller can be reached at or 312-454-1111.

So, how did you get into radio? We'd love to hear the story about why you're passionate about radio.

How Dan Mason Got Into Radio
How John Gehron Got Into Radio

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KKLA Host Thrown From Motorcycle


55-year-old Frank Pastore was in an accident while riding his motorcycle Monday night. Local media is reporting his injuries are serious. Pastore, a former pitcher with the Cincinnati Reds, has been a host on Christian radio station KKLA in Glendale California since 1994. Pastore was thrown from the motorcycle and found unconscious on the freeway.

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Saturday, November 24, 2012

CC: "iHeartRadio Downloaded 135 Million Times"


Clear Channel says its iHeartRadio app has now been downloaded over 135 million times. The company also says it now has more than 20 million registered users. iHeartRadio has over 1,500 live broadcast and digital-only stations from 150 cities, plus user-created custom stations. iHeartRadio includes all the Clear Channel stations and also stations from Univision, Cumulus, Greater Media, WNYC, EMF?s Contemporary Christian Air1 and K Love, college radio, Cox, Emmis, and others.

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(TALENT) The Radio Refusal


A pack of incorrigible whiners ? those radio station owners and management who are yelping like ferrets hung up in a bear-trap. ?Revenues are down! Bodies must be sacrificed!? they bellow. Of course revenues aren?t skyrocketing. Other media are cleaning our clocks and eating our lunches. We can all cheer up, though, as there is a reason: We are categorically incompetent at so much of what we do.

Music radio, especially, hasn?t made an improvement in 30 years. Some would assert longer. The technologies have certainly made grand leaps, but those were outsourced. Further, it was the application of the technologies that made the watering-down and dumbing-down of radio even more expedient. Syndication and V/Ting would be the most obvious examples. The rapidity at which embarrassingly shabby commercials can be produced would be another.

That ownership and management has joyfully ripped the guts out of the key programming and creative elements of radio is not an issue being challenged. It?s a given. Everybody in this racket knows it, but few are willing to openly admit to it -- or their own part in the exercise. Apparently, even though I contend otherwise, ?Pollyanna? may still loiter here.

Indeed, the argument has been made that those (usually) undesirable elements of greed, entitlement and avarice are factors in radio?s impoverishment and obvious lack of development. Some suggest that senior execs may just be waiting for their nests to be more fully-feathered before they bail. Others have washed their hands and pointed to ?fiduciary obligations." However, when fiduciary duties are offered as an excuse-du-jour for failure, one could be forgiven for inquiring, ?Say, what!? How does that work!? I mean, in your mind!??

Now, I am also obliged to conclude the following: Radio-people are refusing to learn!

One need only consider other enterprises where ?learning? is the second priority -- right after providing quality products and services. So much so that many companies invest a significant portion of their revenues in ongoing education and R&D activities. Yes, they do. It?s in all the papers.

Having had this discussion for a very long time, I have often heard the standard and now-expected retorts. Encapsulated, they take the form of: ?Bull****! We are, too, willing to learn! We have sales meetings an? everything!?

Meanwhile, I am determined to make a somewhat more seditious and disturbing observation. A statement that radio-people are refusing to learn is way too easy to generate and only invites challenges. My years of personal counseling and coaching, however, have taught me that people can be extremely sophisticated when deluding themselves. We are, indeed, complex and sneaky mammals when serving the purposes of protecting and reinforcing our already-held beliefs and values. When it comes to digging our heels in, we have no equals.

The unfortunate portion of this submission is about the lack of awareness of our own positions ? the deeply-held, core positions. As all of this also applies to radio people, the position can be represented as follows: Radio people believe there is nothing new in radio to learn! Nothing, that is, which can be considered as core or significant.

Again, the evidence for this assertion lies in the utter lack of applying developmental programs in how we present our medium ? an absence that has lasted for decades. Radio-types really do insist: There is nothing new to learn in radio. In other words, that radio is a ?closed field."

I have been around long enough to remember when ?optics? was also considered a ?closed field." The only advances being made were in the technologies that were used to grind lenses ? important enough, to be sure. But then a guy came along and said, ?I call it a laser. Maybe we can do some stuff with this.?

Radio has words and sounds as the only ingredients available to generate the messages we want to provide. That?s it. That?s all. Yet, radio has presumed the language we use is a low, common denominator ? an element that is pervasive and as common as dirt. As such, the language we use becomes undeserving of any particular attention. This is the case, even as we suppress, manacle and otherwise enslave our performers and presenters. Radio people have yet to realize that language is the most complex technology ever developed by humans! (Running algorithms on the possibilities of language nuances would even melt my Mac like an alien?s acid-blood burning through the bulkheads.)

If any astute reader defaults to a desperate but still satisfactory-in-the-moment conclusion I am promoting a proposition here that we all become as formally literate as, say, a news presenter toiling for the B.B.C., they would be profoundly mistaken.

Radio listeners respond to the words we use including the syntax, vocabulary, the attendant tonalities, speeds, tempos, emphasis, and other factors. They generate meaning from those words. They have their own models-of-the-world through which to filter and derive some semblance of order from the communications. They respond to those messages ? automatically and unconsciously, first. Whether they respond in a manner consistent with our own intentions is always a topic available for constant consideration. But, we haven?t, don?t, and won?t engage in those considerations.

I am still spectacularly amazed that radio people have no idea of how, precisely, our medium impacts on a listener. It?s not as if the information hasn?t been available for decades. That listeners and/or viewers of electronic media are unconsciously responding by engaging extremely unique, powerful, and separate neurological processes seems to be lost on this industry ? as are the consequences of ignoring these processes. We are, however, experiencing[ those consequences!

This is so unnecessarily tragic ? for us! Until or unless we have a fuller appreciation and knowledge of these factors ? and the alternate methodologies and techniques to exploit them ? we will continue to treat radio as a direct, one-to-one medium. We will continue to make all the critical mistakes that such a dearth of understanding assures. We will be delivering our messages in ways that confront and challenges the listeners? realities while we are continuously insulting them in the process.

?Radio is an electronic, indirect, one-on-unspecified, medium.? That?s me talking and this is more than a wild, unconsidered opinion. This is a provided fact that has, so far, gone unchallenged by anyone with any contradictory evidence whatsoever. It is time we learned to accept that of radio and deliver it as such.

There are very few of us around who are able, as peers or colleagues, to provide the necessary education on these issues in a radio environment. And why would there be more? It is a non-existent market ? so long as radio-folk remain in a state of abject denial, continue supporting each other?s delusions and are?still refusing to learn.

Ronald T. Robinson has been involved in Canadian Radio since the '60s as a performer, writer and coach and has trained and certified as a personal counsellor. Ron makes the assertion that the most important communicative aspects of broadcasting, as they relate to Talent and Creative, have yet to be addressed. Check out his website

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SBS Sponsoring Concert For Sandy Victims


On November 24, Multiple Latin Grammy winning superstars Juanes and Juan Luis will perform at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn and donate 100 percent of the proceeds to the American Red Cross. SBS stations in New York, WSKQ-FM ?Mega 97.9FM? and WPAT-FM ?93.1FM La Variedad de NY!? are official media partners of the event.

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Robertson's UberTalk Gaining Traction


Michael Roberston says real-time Twitter feeds are now available for all major radio shows at his website UberTalk. And he says, 83 of the top 100 radio show hosts are actively using Twitter to communicate with their listeners both during and after a broadcast. Listeners can tune in to those shows and experience internet interactions with hosts including links, photos commentary and listener feedback.

UberTalk is a cloud guide to every show on radio in a TV guide layout. The show-centric focus (rather than station) makes it easy to find radio shows which are ranked by popularity. Shows are grouped into categories such as politics, public, sports, news and more and can be recorded. UberTalk with Twitter is available  from any browser. Or listen on the go with free UberTalk iOS and Android apps.

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Facebook Post Gets Host Suspended


Perhaps another case of a radio host not thinking before using Social Media. And clearly a sign of how quickly you can get into trouble and jeopardize your job when emotions take over logic. WNWS is in Jackson, TN and host Bill Way (pictured) is off the air after he made a Facebook post about President Obama that a lot of people took offense to. Here's a portion of the Way FB post.

"A short message to Obama voters. To vote for him with a 9.2 unemployment rate, $16,000,000,000 in debt and an israeli war, a pimp walking prez married to cheetahs daughter...expect what you will most certainly get. bye bye medicare. hello homeless.. I love America except for the idiots." Way apologized for his comments but it was too little too late. The NAACP quickly jumped in and criticized Way

General Manager Larry Wood told the local newspaper he learned about the comments Way made on his personal Facebook page. "In no way do they reflect the positions or thoughts of any of us at WNWS-FM. We certainly don't condone the comments from Bill and appreciate his public apology. We're discussing his comments and apology. Considering the gravity of the situation, for now, by mutual agreement, Bill is taking a few days off."

(11/21/2012 2:32:57 PM)
It is impossible to argue with ignorance!
(11/21/2012 1:53:30 PM)
There is absolutely no excuse for the line <>and there is no defense either. It may be his 1st amendment right to speak freely, but it shows him to be a racist. If I were his GM, he'd have been fired immediately.
(11/21/2012 1:53:15 PM)
There is absolutely no excuse for the line <
>and there is no defense either. It may be his 1st amendment right to speak freely, but it shows him to be a racist. If I were his GM, he'd have been fired immediately.
(11/21/2012 9:55:30 AM)
I don't know how American broadcasters would respond to such comments, but from up here in The Great White North, they seem to be absolutely astonishing.

Still, does this mean the man should be disallowed to speak - even though it is to demonstrate his ignorance and lack of humanity...? My guess: probably not.

The trick, I think, is in making sure those comments are also challenged - and in certain terms. And challenged openly.

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What if Radio Paid Like Pandora Pays?


Set aside for a moment radio's long standing love affair with artists and labels, dating back to the beginning of musical time, when it was a big deal for an artist to hear their music played and promoted on a local radio station. Certainly times have changed. The call in recent months has been about establishing a fair playground for everyone who distributes music. Radio is no longer the only way and everyone understands that. Assistant Professor of Business Administration at Washington and Lee University, David Touve has calculated that if "Big Radio" had to pay what Pandora has to pay for music, "Big Radio" would owe billions.

Here is a quick look at how Touve came up with his numbers. You can also check out his blog post HERE for more detail. In his analysis he estimates 9, 12, and 15 songs per hour and uses Arbitron's published estimates of the US Listening Audience (aged 12 and greater) at various times of the day, which he places at around 8.8% of the 12+ population.

"And so, at 12 songs per hour given an average radio listening audience throughout the day of 8.8% of the population age 12 and higher, so-called "Big Radio" would owe $2,469,294,195 (at the rate of $0.0011) in royalties for the performance of sound recordings if treated like a pureplay webcaster."

"If "Big Radio" were treated like a default webcaster, at 12 songs per hour given an average radio listening audience throughout the day of 8.8% of the population age 12 and higher, that "Big Radio" would owe $4,714,107,000 (at the rate of $0.0021 ) in royalties for the performance of sound recordings."

(11/21/2012 6:12:23 PM)
If big & little stations charged the artists/record companies to play the music there would be no music on the radio and music radio would be a stinking corpse.

Meanwhile, I still am missing how an internet station based in, say, Belize, would be charged by anybody else because residents of this or that country went online to hear some tunes. I mean, who gets the invoice and who has the authority to collect?

(11/21/2012 2:42:24 PM)

And if big and little artists and big and little record companies had to pay regular advertising rates to get their recorded product advertised, exposed and promoted, as all other companies pay to advertise their products and services, they would pay billions in advertising dollars to big and little radio stations.
I say equalize the artists and record companies with all other companies and charge them regular advertising rates to advertise, expose and promote their recorded product.

(11/21/2012 1:44:40 PM)
Re: "Radio is not a dying industry, try asking a real audience who depended on broadcast radio during the recent storms... Broadcast Radio is NOT all about music, if you think it is, then you don't know radio or ever worked successfully in it."

Haven't heard anyone with knowledge say radio is dying, but its business model is changing. As for your "...asking a real audience...", do you realize how pompous this sounds? Not all broadcasters on the East Coast participated in warning the public - some just played music.

Another arrogant statement is "Broadcast Radio is NOT all about music, if you think it is, then you don't know radio or ever worked successfully in it." This sounds like a member of the Tea Party calling anyone who disagrees unpatriotic. I spent 2 decades successfully competing in major market radio, and nearly another decade paying my dues to get there, just like hundreds of people who have been warning of this digital change for radio.

Ronald, about your "...wonder what stops internet broadcasters from originating off-shore..." Where your servers are located isn't what's paid on, it's where your listeners reside. Triton Digital's September "Webcast Metrics" reports 99.2% of Clear Channel E&M's Mon-Fri Average Active Sessions are from the U.S., with Cumulus showing 98.%. Pandora's audience was 100% U.S. (Pandora started streaming in Australia last month.)

Reaching audience in other lands means each company needs to pay performance royalties in the country of residence for the listener.

Here's a fact: The U.S. is one of only five other counties where broadcasters do not pay this performance royalty. The others are China, Iran, North Korea, Rwanda.

Please note: I am not for paying this "performance fee," especially to new artists seeking exposure. For me it has come to the point where having broadcasters not pay puts them into a class that doesn't exist, and it gives an unfair advantage. What's good for one music-intensive business is good for another.

It got this way because broadcasters didn't say a word when others were getting hammered with fees.

(11/21/2012 1:42:31 PM)
actually Andy if you look up public records Pandora paid 136 million in royalties for 2011 and because listening is up this year I would expect them to pay more than that for 2012
(11/21/2012 1:39:24 PM)
In response to Andy Collins' comment "does this mean Pandora is pays $150,000,000 a year,,,I hardly think so."

In fact, Pandora will pay well north of $200,000,000 this year.

Check out this report of their 2nd quarter results:
"During Q2 FY13, Pandora paid $60.5 million -- or just under 60% of its revenue -- in royalties to the music industry. "

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