Does Radio Have a Strategy For Smart Phones?
When you get an opportunity to spend time with people using their iPhones or Android devcies, you get a real sense of how consumers have developed relationships with their device. Radio, for the longest time, has had a special relationship with consumers. Radio executives and managers, to this day, tout the bond listeners have with their local station or morning DJ. When Fred Jacobs played video of consumers he tracked in a recent study, it was more confirmation that consumers are doing nearly everything on these tiny devices. Banking, games, e-mail, making calls, using it as a flashlight, taking pictures, and yes, listening to music. But these consumers in cities like L.A., Cleveland, Baltimore, and Dallas were not telling Jacobs, "I have my favorite radio station App" on their phones. Is that a problem for radio?
Jacobs moderated a panel Tuesday at Radio Ink's Radio Tech Summit called "The Moblie CX," and it was fascinating to actually see the consumers in the video and listen to radio people react to their responses. The most mentioned "music" app was Pandora. "I've died and gone to music heaven," one consumer said. How often does radio get that reaction anymore?
Jacobs says radio can do better: "But this also speaks to the marketing challenges that many stations have in effectively communicating to their cumes that listeners can now enjoy their streams on their mobile phones. And this also presupposes that station apps are about streaming, when in fact, many apps provide much more content and resources than just their streams. In fact, from a jacAPPS perspective, we encourage stations that are designing apps to incorporate other aspects of their brands in apps to create a better consumer experience."
A member on the Jacobs panel said, "When I was growing up, WABC was my radio station. You don't hear that a lot anymore." In fact, one of the consumers in the video had several wires coming out of the dash just so he could listen to his Pandora App on his phone. Jacobs says it's about the content, and that's the way we should look at it. "Regarding Pandora, all the listeners on the video called it 'radio' or 'Pandora Radio,'" he said. "So to me, it comes down to the consumer experience. Anything that provides audio entertainment while serving to usurp radio listening or radio's presence on devices and platforms may as well be 'radio.' Let's put it this way [Pandora founder/Chief Solutions Officer] Tim Westergren thinks it's radio, although maybe radio redefined."
So the big question remains, does your station have defined goals to compete on mobile devices? Do you have a strategy to keep your listeners tuned in when they are using that device for everything? Or are you content to allow them to leave you once they step out of the car? That is, if they are still listening in the car, and not all wired up.
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I was reading Fred Jacobs article on radio mobile strategy...thought my email to Eric could "sum up" my thoughts of how important this is
Hope you are doing well...I would really like to talk with you about what I'm "up to". I'm working as a partner in a digital company called Mobi Tech here in SLC. Yes, yet another person left traditional radio because these big companies seemed "paralyzed" with corporate "issues". Little did I know that the multi-million dollar revenue plan I had for our cluster to develop a "mobile/digital plan" fell on "deaf ears" because the company was in the process of being sold. I would like to share my "portal" concept as it relates to your article "I want my FM". I believe if broadcasters don't embrace new media technologies they are at risk of becoming "irrelevant" in the next few years. Local radio stations have the opportunity to be a "portal" to the new digital world for their listeners...not an app but a mobile website that offers lifestyle targeted information so that listeners can continue to rely on their trusted radio station for all their needs. I agree with having FM available through your smart phone, but I think it should be through a "button" on your mobile website to keep listeners connected to the brand of your station. Here are a couple of links for you to check out...click through on your smart phone to see the full effect...
PLUS...our company offers a "turn key platform" to build mobile websites for clients...this is where the multi-million dollar part comes in...can you say "NON-SPOT INCREMENTAL REVENUE"!! Just something ESSENTIAL for radio Account Managers to have in their "tool box".
I will ALWAYS be a broadcaster, it's in my blood, I'm just trying to find another way to have a positive impact. I would love to hear what you think.
|- Bryce Taylor|
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