You see this all the time if you follow what is largely happening in radio on Facebook and Twitter (and other social media platforms). You see a lot of focus on what other stations are doing and a lot of promotional crap. This content is generally driven toward shock or promotion of a radio-station-selfish movement. Too little is focused on real connectivity with local listeners, but that can change. Let’s look at the possibility of focusing on three key areas that could really give great impact for local radio personalities today.
1. Personalities are people. Real listeners respond to authenticity and other real people. It’s weird to say “Be real” isn’t it? But that is the point and it is largely missing from local radio personalities in social media. When you repost the content of others or use tricks, it isn’t really connective. It can provide “temporary eyes,” but you should be looking to win hearts too. Be yourself and put your life into social media. Of course, you want to be careful and use good judgment for safety and also to make sure you are matching company standards, but people don’t really like being manipulated. They like to see you are a real person. Once they do, they are usually drawn closer to you. That’s half the real value of social media and something most manipulators miss.
2. Passion means easy engagement. Hopefully, you are a personality that matches the market you are in and you also match the audience you are trying to attract. If this is true and you are a well-rounded person with interests beyond radio that you’re passionate about, it’s likely you should use them creatively to connect to your local listeners. There are causes in your market, things that happen that are hyper-local. Comment on them, engage listeners about them, be passionate, and build community with others who will identify with you.
3. Get listeners to take follow-up actions. Try to create your content in such a way that you really get listeners involved. This involvement could be as simple as commenting on a post, photo, or video from you, going to your website or on-air (one of my favorites) or joining up with you if you are super-involved in a cause or event, to help you “take it to the next level.” You talk about opportunity to gain loyalty of passionate listeners!
There is great opportunity out there for local radio personalities to really connect, protect themselves and their livelihood, and grow audience with social media. But it takes authenticity, strategy that matches the life group of your format, the values of the audience you most want to attract, and smart engagement that leans directly into the benefits for, along with passions and interests of, your local listeners. If you do that, while being highly visual and fun, you will win opportunity to move audiences in social media. That’s much larger than temporarily manipulating someone to see reposted content or generic cookie-cutter stuff everyone else in radio may be posting.
*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. Don’t just read. Get engaged in the process. Contact him directly @ 877.475.6864 or Americalist1@aol.com.