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6 Keys To Building Listener Relationships

There's a lot of hype involved with social media, and there are a lot of radio pros that have not yet awakened to the idea that systemic shift can get you if you dont move now to protect your best relationships. If you are not using social media to expand contact, encourage loyalty with real value-based content and grow listening occasions for your brands, you are setting up future critical failure of your brand. 

Since about 81% of your listeners would be more likely to try friends suggestions (such as a new station, music or an on-air feature), social media offers an essential way for you to really make a difference in your ratings.if you do it right.  So, the question remains:  How do you best build a strategy that your limited staff and resources can execute to strengthen your brand for the future?

Here are 6 Key Ingredients To Build Listener Relationships thru Social Media:

1. Dismiss social media apathy.  Dont just let your competitor take all your listeners and listeners on the fringe because you are not active.  Many radio stations dont have active real social media strategies.  If your competitor does and you dont, you are on the road to lower ratings.  Social media is being used

by select radio stations to strengthen relationships and actually grow new ones. 

2. Have a specific social media strategy that very frequently leads listeners back to the broadcast signal.  While radio companies would never allow DJs  to show up and play whatever they want, this is often their total social media strategy.  What are the details in your strategy for social media that focus on getting  listeners to spend more of their loyalty with your broadcast brand?  If you cant think of any, you dont have a plan.

3. Learn the posting patterns on social media sites.  Some of this is social media science (7 a.m., 5 p.m., 10 a.m.).   Some of this is also basic listener  science.  Look at the drive-time patterns in your market.  Getting in a groove with your listeners and potential listeners is important.

4. Use video and marry it with usable content that is important to the listeners you want to attract.  Have you ever used YouTube to look up How To  do something?  Your listeners have done this a lot.  Try it.  Then, think about ways you can create content based upon local questions or lifestyle-based  opportunities with the listeners you want to attract.

5. Focus your social media on how and why listeners choose your brand and what makes you special.  With an eye on attracting more listeners like the  ones you already have, focus on bringing the message of why and how people connect with you on your social media.

6. Bring your social media into your other forms of contact marketing (such as listener email, website, direct mail and more).  Make it easy for listeners  to make the choice to use your brand. 

If youre lucky, you have a competitor who doesnt believe in social media. So, use social media with a real strategy to cut their throat.  Dont be quick to judge  your social media negatively.  It isnt advertising (so dont treat it like advertising).  Its a relationship building opportunity.  Judge your social media work by  your strategy and stay focused on relationship building based upon what is important to the listeners you want to attract.  Spend your time building the proper  strategy and focus on what you know is right for your radio brand. Over time you will feel real impact based upon your filters (from the strategy) and leave your  competitor puzzled.   

Loyd Ford is the direct marketing, ratings and social media strategist for Americalist and programmed very successful radio brands in markets of all sizes for years, including KRMD AM & FM in Shreveport, WSSL and WMYI in Greenville, WKKT in Charlotte and WBEE in Rochester, NY. Learn more about Loyd here: Reach out to Loyd via e-mail HERE Visit his Facebook radio social media page HERE

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