If you are on the radio in a local market today, what really matters is appropriate on-air content and local connectivity. You probably spend most of your time working on your radio show, but you should also work to have a social media plan for developing more local listeners, and those efforts have to be substantial in 2013 and beyond, to say the least. Today we talk about four basic things you might be doing, or could enhance, to make your results for your morning show jump. Then, we will give you a bonus for “career improvement.”
Here are four powerful ways you can drive connection to your local audience:
1. Do a pre-show video every morning. This doesn’t need to be fancy, but it does need to be personal. Everyone has some basic experiences getting up and going to work. Take advantage of that by relating to them. Share something personal, have fun with them, and point them to your morning show. “See you on (station brand)” is asking for the order. Giving them something personal before you ask for the order gives you more opportunity to influence them. Get going!
2. Remember the old “handshake tours”? Yep, they work. Politicians do it. Consider yourself running for office in the county of “Social Media.” How do you do it? Use video and/or pictures with people you meet in the market. You with them. Relate to them, make these pictures and videos a percentage of your actual posts on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms. People love to be validated. You with them is big. You’re on the radio. They will be proud of this. So will their friends (I’m assuming you are really good and funny, right?) and you will receive the benefit over time as more and more people see all these pictures and videos of you with THEM (listeners). Do a little each day and don’t be afraid to ask for a picture with them so you can post it on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, et al. You will build audience with this.
3. Take listeners behind the scenes, but be clever. This is video of prep. Video of something special that you are planning. It could be an event, an appearance, whatever. And it might involve a client. That’s more than fine. You have a meeting with a client and you’re going to do something with them. Take a photo with the client or video (see number 2 above) and post the visuals with an invitation to “listen” for what will happen! Focus on what is important or interesting to LISTENERS. Show them – in a fun way – how “it” is put together. Notice how much of this is all about THEM and not so much you.
4. Finally, are you involved? Is there a cause that is important to YOU that fits with the images of the core listeners you are most trying to attract to increase your ratings and make yourself a super hero? Well, are you heavily engaged in that cause? No? You should be. You want to build a tribe of passionate people who will fight for you? Identify an important cause in the market you can be passionate about and let ‘er rip (don’t choose a political cause). People (listeners) will gather around you, listen to you, promote your show like you wouldn’t believe, and TELL EVERYONE. They will stick up for you!
FREE HIGH-PROFILE TALENT BONUS
If you are on the radio (especially in morning drive), you should be thinking about your future. If you love your market and want to build your future there, you should double-down on your fame. This isn’t about the radio station, it’s about you. If you are not working to capitalize on your fame today and turn it into other lanes of revenue for yourself outside of your radio work, you are likely making a big mistake. The bottom line is that your company is focused on their bottom line. That does not leave you with endless support (and you know this), but the world is also changing.
Clearly you will want to avoid violating company policies of any kind, but you should be working to develop additional revenue beyond your morning show or other high-profile personality positions on the radio in your market. There are options. It’s easy to see a country or Top 40 or Urban star being managed by someone to “maximize” their income streams. The same can be said for Hollywood types. Well, guess what? You should be managing your career, too. That means your investment in social media and local connectivity has a value for you as well as for the radio station and broadcast company. The world in the near future may not look like it does today. That includes that you may be doing your show in another arena that is not on traditional radio. Think ahead and look at your strengths. Focus on how you can develop your footprint in the market. It will benefit your radio station, but you are also working for yourself.
Yes, you should have a strategic plan for what you are doing in social media (including percentage of content and what types of content dominate your posts and comments). It should be focused on the listeners you most want to attract with you in the center. If you don’t have this plan, get busy. Time waits for no one.
Everyone says this in our business: “Content is king.” It’s a lie. Money is king. That’s why our business works the way it does. Your job is to provide value in your content so that it turns into money for your employers and for yourself and your family, too. Focus on what is important. In 2013, you have to be a quality content provider and local connectivity expert. Take this advice and you’ll be glad you did.
*Content originally appeared @ RadioInk.com. For more content on radio, go to RadioInk.com. Look for my column on social media and radio on the left-hand side of the homepage behind my picture and the word “Engagement.”
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Loyd Ford is the Direct Marketing, Ratings & Social Media Strategist for Americalist Direct Marketing. He works with media brands all across the country to improve ratings and participation with custom contest strategy, telemarketing, strategic direct mail and social media for radio clients. His interests include social media, digital local-direct revenue and non-traditional revenue for radio. And, yes, he believes you should be receiving more share of digital revenue in your local radio market along with higher ratings. Contact him directly @ 877.475.6864 or Americalist1@aol.com.