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Savage Signing Confirms, Business Is Business


The Cumulus plan to offer politically middle-of-the-road talkers as part of its network was pretty much blown up this week when the news that Michael Savage would be syndicated by Cumulus Media Networks became official. It'll be hard for Cumulus to be very critical of Rush now and use that as a strategy to push Mike Huckabee as a Rush alternative now that Savage is on the Cumulus team. Savage is a success, no doubt, but very few people would characterize him as moderate.

It was just a few short months ago, that Cumulus Co-COO John Dickey told Radio Ink that listeners were fatigued with talk show hosts that were hard left or hard right, and Mike Huckabee was coming along at the right time. "I think what's happened in our format in talk and in news talk, is there hasn't been enough of a balance from a delivery perspective. It's not so much a balance left and right. It is just a balance of how a product is delivered and presented. I think the Governor is going to change that. He's going to open up the discourse to a wider group of people, by virtue of the fact that he's not going to intimidate and shout at people.  That's our perspective on what needs to be offered up here."

This week, Dickey said,  “As we aggressively create radio’s most compelling mix of show hosts, the addition of Michael Savage is a milestone in our determined efforts to provide our listeners nationwide with the best programing in the business."

Hey, perspectives change, when you have a chance to bring in a big star. The Savage Nation draws about eight million weekly listeners. The show has often been called the third-most listened to show in America, behind Rush and Hannity. Savage gives Cumulus a radio rock star while newcomers Huckabee and Geraldo get their sea legs and build audiences. Perhaps he's a hedge if one or both don't work out. 

Savage is an entertaining conservative for sure and a quick glance at his website will show he is no fan of the current President. If you've listened to his program, it's doubtful you would classify him in the same mold as Huckabee or Geraldo. The Savage signing is proof that business is business and, when need be, business models can change.

(11/17/2012 3:17:58 PM)
Congratulations, Cumulus.

A bit late to the "on the wrong side of history" party, but enjoy. I guess.

- Karla Dudek

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