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Saturday, April 11, 2015

Consumers to Automakers: We Love AM/FM Radio. Leave it!


We're used to hearing radio executives scream from the rooftops that radio is vibrant, successful and consumers love us. But that's like the CEO of McDonalds saying his French Fries are the best in the country. It's always better when an outsider supports your position and is also willing to shout it from the rooftops. That's what Forbes contributor Christopher Versace did for radio, especially when it comes to what consumers want and expect in their automobile dash. His warning to automakers...don't get too enamored with the latest digital technology and forget that consumers still love their AM/FM radio.

Versace referenced a new IPSOS poll which says that while consumers do want changes to their infotainment system, they still want AM and FM radio to remain the heart and soul of their car entertainment. "When 1,000 adults were sampled and asked about their car audio preferences, 91% said they desire typical car radio with 9% preferring an app-based system. Per the data, 84% of respondents listen to AM/FM radio while relatively new systems like Sirius/XM, Pandora  and Spotify came in at 22%, 18% and 7%, respectively.  Finally, when asked about their preferences for entertainment options in their next car, 80% of consumers chose AM/FM over CD players, connected smartphones and other forms of audio entertainment."

The article also cited a number of reasons why consumers still love radio. None of them will be a surprise to you. "Some listen to AM/FM radio for the music. With so many listeners, even as different mediums and technology have changed the landscape, getting a song played on terrestrial radio is the quickest and surest way to stardom.  For those looking to sell products, the sheer size of the audience makes radio advertising one of the most effective ways to market goods and services.  And for local news and information, there is nothing like broadcast radio. It?s not like satellite radio will provide you with a local weather forecast."

Versace offers up the following advice to automakers. "Despite America?s love affair with terrestrial radio, salesmen of the latest modern equipment and authors who fancy themselves as the next Isaac Asimov suggest its time for automobile manufacturers are considering replacing the AM/FM radio in your car with an app-driven system that would remove the consumer?s ability to get local terrestrial radio in their car.  Based on heavily sampled consumer preferences, the data suggests this would be a grave mistake."

Read the full Forbes piece HERE and don't forget to join us for DASH on November 4 and 5

(4/9/2015 6:39:53 PM)
Radio connects people to the communities in which they live. Other forms of media do not. It is just that simple. Period!
(4/9/2015 3:29:28 PM)
What the internet heads don't want you to know is how much people prefer a dash CD player over all the pay stuff. The great unwashed prefer AM'FM radio plus a CD deck. Automakers in cahoots with XM Sirrius tried for 15 years to kill terrestrial radio in cars. After all the effort, satellite radio is still small portion of auto audience. I reject the opinions of people who text and drive. They have no brains.
(4/9/2015 12:42:07 PM)
I drive a BMW. To tune the radio, one must go through a complex, uncooperative
digital dashbosrd device.
Changing stations is difficult and s road hazard. There are times, for safety's sake, that I must drive off the road, park the car and tune. I want a stand alone AM FM Radio. This is my third BMW with the same issues.
(4/9/2015 11:07:09 AM)
We are the last totally free source of entertainment. That is a key component of what we should be saying. It is also why we have a target on our backs. Do not forget that in our battle against all of these paid subscription services.
(4/9/2015 8:12:43 AM)
Am I wrong in thinking there's plenty of room for everything? There is in the dash of my cars. Note to manufacturers: Electronics are pretty compact these days and pretty cheap too. Either/or thinking isn't the American way that I know. We want it all!

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