25 Apr Alexa, Play My Favorite Station
Your home or office radio is being replaced by Amazon’s Echo devices with their Alexa app, and it may be a more convenient way to hear radio. Their use for home entertainment is growing rapidly, and you’ll want your radio station represented there. You may be using or hearing liners that support the Alexa habit on radio stations, and that’s smart.
Here’s what you need to know: Alexa uses the TuneIn app (www.tunein.com). Your stream should be listed there. The problem for some stations is not knowing exactly how the stream is listed…and therefore not selling that identity on the air. Remember when stations would say, “Find us on Facebook”, but didn’t tell you their Facebook screenname? Alexa needs to hear the correct name. But if your station is “Mix 99,” good luck. TuneIn has 9 stations with that name.
You may have better luck with call letters for Alexa, but we should note nothing is foolproof. Alexa sometimes has a problem interpreting numbers (like frequencies), so your best bet is to buy an Echo and see what works for your station. We also noted a problem with some Spanish language station names.
Use liners, imaging, web and social media instructions to show people how to use their devices to find you. Those items also help them use you better (and improve your shot for better ratings).
iHeartRadio can also be accessed via Alexa. Non-radio services like Pandora and Spotify are also available, meaning the competition is always nearby. Your program content needs to be strong and engaging, and your local services may be your secret weapon.