29 Aug Wednesday, August 29, 2018
This Week in The Lund Letter:
> Repetition, repetition, repetition
> Stretching your music library
> Selling the station name often
> And the latest media trends
Lund Management Alert: Radio Myth – Repetition Is Bad
Fox News Channel has led cable news as the #1 network for over 50 months, but last week MSNBC pulled ahead of Fox News. While there are a variety of factors that have led to this, MSNBC’s strategy of repeating its top evening shows including Rachel Maddow definitely has contributed to its success.
Top 40 radio’s success is built on the repetition of the top songs. As the legendary KOWH owner Todd Storz and programmer Bill Stewart observed of jukebox selections in a café in Omaha in the early 1950s, the same songs were being selected every hour. They developed the Top 40 radio format playing the top songs with high repetition.
Hearing one’s favorite music is the #1 reason listeners still come to a music station. Radio programmers rotate the listeners’ favorite songs frequently so in every quarter hour a listeners’ favorite song would be exposed to satisfy the cume. Today’s top 40 playlists reinforce this favorite song strategy as songs by the same artists are exposed in the same hour. Artists like Ariana Grande, Maroon 5, Drake, Camila Cabello, Demi Lovato, Imagine Dragons, Post Malone and Marshmello may have multiple songs played in the same hour because they are the listeners’ favorite songs. MSNBC may have the same guests and commentators on their individual shows, and play the same video clips.
Repetition of great content is desired, not a programming blunder. Your morning show should also repeat its best content and benchmarks several times in different hours and days. A great bit will only be heard by 10% of the audience. When there’s lots of great content, repeat it again in the evening or weekends.
Programmers shouldn’t be too fixated on manipulating artist separation. These rules may actually prevent a P-1 listener from hearing their favorite songs by their favorite artist over and over. Popular Rock features like “Two For Tuesday” and “Block Party Weekend” prove that listeners don’t care about artist separation. They want to hear their favorites, and that includes several songs in a row by the same artist.
When is repetition bad? When it’s a song or piece of content the listener dislikes. Change your paradigm on repetition to repeat great songs and great content. Listeners will listen longer, and as broadcasters, that’s what we want.
Lund Music Scheduling: Fine Tune Your Rules
People come to FM music stations for the… you guessed it… music. So making sure your music scheduling software runs smoothly is essential. This is our third article in the Music Scheduling series. The Lund Consultants offer these tips for better music scheduling:
Stretch your library. Use gold recycling from midday to the next overnight. These are largely exclusive listening periods, and you can vary the actual mix of songs by not recycling currents and recurrents.
Don’t ask for the impossible. Having a scheduling rule that says no male artists back-to-back may sound like a good move for variety, but not if your library is 80% male artists. The same goes for tempo restrictions.
Avoid artist conflicts. Check your spelling and spacing on artist names, as well as solo versus group artists like Niall Horan and One Direction.
How’s Your Music? How’s Your Software?
Playing the right songs and managing your music software controls are vital to a station’s success. Lund Media can assist you with a comprehensive music review and software tune-up. We’ll conduct a complete analysis of your active playlist along with every aspect of your music software – rules, clocks, and rotations. We also provide a quick turn-around. Capitalize on the very thing listeners want most – the best researched music played in the best rotation for your target demo. We provide this essential programming tool to our radio station clients whom we consult on an ongoing basis; we also outsource this as a one time cost efficient service to readers of the Lund Letter. Email John Lund for details and timetable.
Promotion of the Week: Karaoke Cash
You may find the next contender for American Idol or The Voice with this promotion… but probably not. The station plays a song clip of a short lyric, and listeners have to call in and sing the next line. If you get some entertaining winners, consider having a grand prize round for a bigger cash amount at the end of the contest… perhaps at a remote at a local karaoke bar. Remember, karaoke singers don’t need to be pitch perfect, just enthusiastic!
The best radio contests of all time include Secret Sound and Hi-Lo, and they are detailed in the Lund Contest and Promotions Guide, along with 200 more contests and sales promotions. This is the most comprehensive radio contest collection ever published. Click here to order your copy.
Lund’s Top 3: Evaluate Your Programming Basics
Going into the fall diary ratings sweep, make sure you have a strong foundation of on-air basics (begins two weeks from tomorrow):
1. Your station name and positioning statement must clearly sell the brand.
2. The station slogan should be sold often in live and produced liners.
3. Replace lost branding opportunities with the station name.
Programming basics continue next week. Visit www.lundradio.com for more Top 3’s!
Are you marketing to General Managers or Program Directors and want to reach the 9,500+ readers of the Lund Letter? Email John Lund.
This Week’s Music:
Maroon 5’s “Girls Like You” holds on to the crown for both CHR and Hot AC. In other formats, there are new leaders this week. “The Middle” by Zedd/Maren Morris/Grey is on top at Bright AC. Country has a new king with Jason Aldean’s “Drowns the Whiskey.” And Imagine Dragons take over at Alternative with their new hit, “Natural.” Lund clients receive weekly music research information on current music plus regular updates on the best-testing recurrent and gold titles.
Lund Trend Watch:
Back To School Auto Forecast
Nielsen Scarborough has found that approximately 1.5 million households (22% of those in the US) have a child going into college this school year and plan to buy a vehicle during the year. BTS auto shoppers plan to research and compare before buying, and most of that research will be done online. These shoppers are more likely to have used an auto dealership/manufacturer site or app (28% more likely), a radio website (16%), a broadcast TV website (15%) and/or a newspaper website (10%) than other auto shoppers. 66% plan to buy a used vehicle while 39% are looking for a new one (the additional 5% when you do the math? …they plan to buy one of each).
Ross Is Expanding
With all the stories about store closures (we’re looking at you, Sears and JC Penney), it’s nice to hear the opposite. Ross Dress for Less and its dd’s Discounts chain both have plans to grow their location numbers. Ross to 2,400 nationwide (over a recent 2,000 store projection) and dd’s to 600 (up from 500). Currently there are 1,453 Ross stores and 227 dd’s locations. The new expansion goals come after a better than expected second quarter – $389.4 million; up from $317 during the same period last year.
Consistent Time Spent — Radio Rules!
The latest from Nielsen shows that weekly, Adults 18+ spend 12 hours and 20 minutes with radio. They only spend 26 minutes per week with streaming audio on a smartphone and 6 minutes on a tablet. Radio accounts for between 14% and 17% of daily media use. When it comes to sheer time, radio rules!
Here is a list of actions this week for the proactive program director:
Review shows with all station talent. What do they need to work on to perfect their performance?
Movie Premiere – Operation Finale.
Summer Nielsen diary ratings week #11 begins. Third week of the September PPM begins. Two weeks to the start of the fall diary sweep.
Streaming Premiere – CBS All Access begins murder/mystery series One Dollar.
Labor Day Weekend is the culmination of the traditional summer season and a major retail sales weekend. Make sure your holiday weekend programming sounds perfect through the end of Monday.
Streaming Premieres – Tom Clancy’s titular hero gets his first series after several movies with Amazon’s Jack Ryan. Netflix has another full Friday with continuing reality competition series The Great British Baking Show, reality series Inside the Criminal Mind, standup special collection The Comedy Lineup, season two of series Ozark and adult animated series Paradise PD.
Movie Premiere – Kin.
Be active and seen at community events this 3-day holiday weekend. Are talent “remote” formatics as tight as when they originate from the studio? What creative listener incentives are awarded? Do these appearances represent you well? Utilize the Lund Remote Stylebook as a guide.
Labor Day. Do a remote from the baby ward in the hospital and award mothers who popped one out.
This is also a big day for retail and auto sales.
Today’s programming meeting… Brainstorm promotions and creative stunts for fall – Halloween, Veteran’s Day, and Thanksgiving. What charity would be a great cause to champion?
TV Premieres – FX debuts the Sons of Anarchy spinoff Mayans M.C. USA begins new series Purge which is set in the same universe as the horror movie franchise.
Marketing Builds Audience, But Doesn’t Have To Be Costly
The Lund No-Cost Marketing Guide provides over 200 ways to build audience for no cost. Want to grab a bigger share of remote dollars? Want to generate revenue while marketing for more listeners? Put these tactics to use at your station…and provide a big bang for no bucks. Get our No Cost Marketing Guide.
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About the Lund Media Group:
For over 20 years, the Lund Media Group has provided programming, music consulting, operational guidance, and research to commercial and public broadcaststations throughout North America and overseas. Whether you program all sports, all talk, or all music, the Lund Goal is to help stations get more listeners and keep them listening longer. The Lund Consultants are a multi-format custom programming and management consultancy.
Call John Lund for more information about how the Lund Media Group can help your stations achieve more listeners, higher ratings, and more revenue.