13 Mar Wednesday, March 13, 2019
This Week in The Lund Letter:
> The essentials for ratings
> What Dr. Pepper has to do with listening occasions
> Tempo and your music scheduling
> The death of newspapers and other media trends
Lund Programming Clinic 2019: Your Ratings Tool Kit
Generating good ratings – whether metered, diary, telephone or Internet – requires some essential tools. Ratings software helps you isolate who listens and how long. Review how your core listeners behave compared to the rest of your audience. It is easier to generate more listening from your core than from new cume. Your avid fans – P1s – will produce the most listening.
Time your station’s programming. Are bits too long? Can you sit through a traffic light cycle within the same talk break? Long segments are fatiguing, especially when they aren’t compelling. Your listeners are more likely to punch to another station during long breaks in the car.
Listening events provide another reason to tune in later. It may be when you debut a new song, or a talent benchmark. Create listening events to announce your next promotion. Countdown the event minute by minute to create more excitement and continued listening.
Promotions and contests can generate listening occasions as well as building cume. Having specific tune-in times helps spike ratings among your current audience, and it also makes it easier for listeners to follow your contesting. Use social media and your listener database to increase participation..
Contest and Promotions Guide – Limited Time – Special Pricing
Get hundreds of audience-building contests for ratings, seasonal times and holiday events, plus other fun programming and sales promotions. This recently updated Guide is packed with great contests designed to boost listening and ratings. Order it here.
Lund Management Memo: Create Listening Occasions
How many times will a listener tune into your station? Several – but you have to ask for the tune-in. For your major contest, create appointments for listeners to tune in. Find the hours that the station has its greatest cume spikes. It may be 7 AM, 1 PM and 5 PM; for another station it is 9 AM, 12 Noon and 3 PM. Air your contests at set times daily – like 9:20, 12:20 and 3:20. You’ll still get the average listening time per tune-in, but you’ll get more times at bat with that listener when you make it convenient to tune in, and promote those exact times daily.
Be specific; say the times when the contest is played exactly. Don’t be like the cable guy who’ll be there between 1 and 5 PM. People are busy; they have a life – and they can’t listen all day. Telling a listener to “listen from 1 to 5 for a chance to win” has the same chance of success as winning the Powerball. But listeners may tune in at several specific times when you make appointments with them. Say the exact time with appointment-setting, like your dentist or a sales rep.
This concept works great for station contests as it worked many years ago for Dr. Pepper.
Make appointments with your listeners to tune (back) in with live liners and imaging.
Add Sizzle with Fresh Imaging Liners
Make an emotional connection to your listeners by adding humor to your station’s imaging. Humor tugs at our emotions, elicits a positive emotion, and creates a lasting impression of your brand. By utilizing humor in your imaging, you enhance your relationship with listeners, sound local, and increase your time spent listening.
Your listeners want variety – not unlike the music that’s played. Refresh your imaging liners today. Get 200 creatively written imaging liners. For music stations order here, and for News-Talk order here.
Lund Music Scheduling: Are Tempo Controls Fulfilling Your Strategy?
Is there “stacking” of slow down tempo songs not being scheduled? Are you playing your listeners’ favorite songs? Your objective in setting up tempo controls in your music scheduling software is to create a variety of tempos in each quarter hour …not to prevent slow or fast songs from being scheduled. When you hear a “dull” or “boring” speaker, they may be speaking in a monotone. When you hear a speaker delivering in a “rushed” fast-paced manner, the content of their speech may not resonate with you. This is true with the sequencing of your songs in your music schedule. You don’t want to have the songs be the same tempo. Your station’s “variety” image is enhanced by scheduling a sequence of songs that have different tempos.
When setting up your tempo controls in your music scheduling software, focus on insuring you have a variety of tempos in every quarter hour. It’s like coaching air talents to vary their inflection and pacing when delivering content. Your music flows should have “ups” and “downs” in tempo. Your music goal should be to play a variety of the listeners’ favorite songs. It’s more important to have tempo controls that will provide for a variety of tempos and not be a hindrance to playing the listeners’ favorite songs. Some of the greatest songs in history have been slow songs. If music scheduling software were around in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s, perhaps “Stairway To Heaven” by Led Zeppelin would not be one of listeners’ favorite songs today.
Review the scheduling of songs in each category. If you see a “stacking” of songs not being scheduled because of tempo, revise your tempo controls. Stay on strategy to play your listeners favorite songs – not prevent their favorite songs from being played.
Lund Case Study
“New Year, Old Sound.” This was the comment of a GM who said his stations just didn’t sound exciting and fresh any more. The ratings were sliding, and so was the revenue. What’s missing? Stationality, spark and researched music. Talents lacked compelling content; programming execution was boring. The music, imaging, presentation and promotions were equally stale and uninspiring, too. Call the doctor!
What Lund Media did: We gave the stations a complete physical. The Lund Consultants’ Strategic Programming Analysis evaluated every element and provided the recommendations for music revisions, talent involvement, compelling content, formatics, and marketing ideas — a lot more than a shot in the arm!
We listened to the client stations and direct competition by streaming numerous hours of programming. We scrutinized the ratings software and unlocked vulnerabilities. We reviewed the music software and updated rules and clocks. We provided conclusions and recommendations in writing – and met with talents to reinvigorate their passion… and simonize the execution.
Lund Media brought neutral eyes to unlock talent potential and freshen the programming. How can we bring your cluster to higher performance levels? Call us – (650) 692-7777 or email John Lund – for what this GM said was an “intense check-up from the neck up!” The Lund Consultants work with stations in all market sizes and with all mainstream formats.
Lund’s Top 3: No & Low Cost Motivation Tips
Over the years, we have observed and/or developed several low-cost but high-result ways to motivate your staff. Here are a few more of our favorites:
1. Recognize good results and deeds in writing. Memos, emails, and bulletin board posts are good ways to say “job well done.” The occasional “Atta boy” is rewarding.
2. Send birthday cards to the employee’s home and send a card to spouses, too. Have monthly birthday parties at work.
3. Clean up the place. Attitudes change when a station goes from dumpy to shiny.
Next week – a new Top 3. Visit www.lundradio.com for more Top 3’s!
Planning Your State Broadcast Convention?
John Lund’s positive, fast-moving presentation, “The Science of Growing Your Audience,” includes training and coaching guidelines on the basics of attaining higher ratings and more listeners. Topics include the “basics” of radio programming, America’s top formats: who listens and why, tactics to get more listeners, talent coaching, and how to make voice tracking sound live and local. This presentation will be customized and expanded to meet your members’ needs. Email John Lund for availability and info.
Promotion of the Week: Jelly Bean Count
In a shopping mall fill a car with jellybeans. Invite listeners to stop in and guess how many jellybeans are inside; make it tough and put them in the trunk, too! Especially fun at Easter. Can be used with other prizes as well if a car is not possible.
Lund Trend Watch:
TV Advertising Grows
According to Standard Media Index, US TV advertising is forecast to grow 2% in the first quarter and 7.6% for the full year of 2019. In fact, January 2019 was up 2% over January 2017. January 2018 actually had a 2.4% decline year over year, thus the two year comparison.
Auto Buyers & Mobile
AdColony’s Car Buying Survey found that 53% of respondents feel it is “very important” or “important” to have their smartphone with them while shopping for a vehicle. The top three functions of a smartphone while shopping for a vehicle are comparing prices, researching models/specs and finding dealerships.
They also found some numbers relating to advertising and auto sales. Almost 60% are “very likely” or “likely” to visit a dealership after researching a car online. 61% consider TV auto ads when shopping for a vehicle. 41% are likely to click on an online auto ad during the buying process. 44% take brand image into consideration when comparing one brand to another. And a factoid to consider when designing ads… 33% of car buyers are in the 18 to 34 age range.
Streaming Video Strength
eMarketer found by analyzing Think Now Research data that 61% of adult Americans watch Netflix, 33% watch Amazon Prime Video and 24% watch Hulu. It has been estimated that 84% of internet users will be frequent watchers of digital video content by 2021. 83% will be using mobile devices to watch.
The Death of Local Newspapers
1,400 cities and towns in the US have lost their local newspaper in the past 15 years according to the AP. Local journalism is dying. Decline in readers and ads led these papers to fold. Online competition and cost-cutting ownership are also factors. Five of the ten largest newspaper companies are owned by hedge funds. Newspaper circulation in the US has declined every year for three decades, and ad revenue has nosedived according to Pew Research. Newspaper staffing has declined. Pew says the number of reporters and other newsroom employees fell by 45% nationally from 2004-2017.
Mar 17: St. Patrick’s Day
Mar 28: Spring Nielsen diary and Eastlan sweeps begin
Apr 1: April Fool’s Day
Apr 15: Income Tax Day
Apr 21: Easter
Thanks for reading
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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, alltalk, 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.