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Pandora VS. Radio. Tons of Comments.

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(2/17/2011 2:39:51 PM)   Flag as inappropriate content
Excellent points Mary Beth! I listen to Pandora, iPod, iPad, Sirius/XM and Pandora. BUT...when I want local information, when I want to feel connected to my community, when I want to know what's happening either with the weather or social events I turn to my local radio.

I also think Pandora's ipo and biz model will be profitable and I'll toss some money their way.

Thomas Rohe
SunSpots Productions Voice Talent Agency & Creative Audio Production

- Thomas Rohe
(2/17/2011 12:53:41 PM)   Flag as inappropriate content
"I'm no fan of HD Radio, but..." LMFAO!
- Bobby
(2/17/2011 12:33:40 PM)   Flag as inappropriate content
OMG, this is too much fun…

When you sell for a station that has no “numbers” because it’s too new (as I have), you develop some great arguments as to why Arbitron ratings might not be the best way to gauge a station’s value. Of course, any intelligent person can argue both sides, but these were mine, and I owned them:

1. “It seems like the only people who have time to participate in Arbitron surveys are the unemployed and retired people; everyone else is too busy. Are these your primary demographics?”

2. “How many people do you know who would actually carry a PPM around with them everywhere they went? I think it takes a special kind of quirky person to do that—I always wondered—do they represent the general population?”

3. “I remember I got a dollar in the mail and a laundry list of stuff to do when I was a busy DOD professional. Since throwing money in the trash is counterproductive (and maybe even illegal), I remember I kept the dollar, but threw the rest of the stuff away.”

4. “Do the busy people you know have time to participate in stuff like this? (Shut up and wait for a response) “ Hmm…I know what you mean. Are most of your customers like that?”

5. “Seems like the fox is guarding the hen house on THOSE numbers. How many of your friends like Classic Rock? You know, our play list is 1500 songs deep. You’ve heard our morning show, right?”

6. “You know, stations that use Arbitron have to pay a very, very hefty fee to use their system. I always wonder—do the numbers follow the money?”

7. “Arbitron is first and foremost a business. They’re a publicly traded firm on the New York Stock Exchange; their symbol is ARB. They’re definitely in business to make money—and they cater to large corporate entities willing to pay through the nose for ammo to give to their sales reps. We refuse to give them money, or participate in their process. Have you listened to our morning show?”

Feel free to use this in your next sales meeting.

- Will Baumann
(2/17/2011 12:28:51 PM)   Flag as inappropriate content
I think Pandora could be a good investment based solely on a business model and market place that I think is conducive to short term growth.

As for local radio, Pandora will not kill it at all. However, Pandora has and will continue to pull music listeners away from FM stations (local and network) that play the same songs over and over. Those who just want to listen to music and don't want silly morning jock showmanship will pick Pandora over radio any day of the week. FM station still play a vital role in radio, but as I see it, their ability to sell ad time will depend on their ability to reach their local audience with unique local content. They won't be able to simply rest on the quality and popularity of the tunes they play.

- Brian
(2/17/2011 12:28:24 PM)   Flag as inappropriate content

"Radio is dead" "Commercial radio is failing". NOT!!

You go girl and keep telling it like it is.

The businesses in my market are successfully using radio advertising and keep telling us its their most effective marketing medium.

- Tony Coloff
(2/17/2011 12:18:25 PM)   Flag as inappropriate content
You Rock Mary Beth. Tech heads never fail to amaze me with their personal attacks and lack of common sense. Radio is here to stay, and yes.... it can capitalize on new technology to enhance its delivery. The factis people like to know whats going on locally, and nationally. If they can get that for free, along with a solid balance of entertainment then they'll stay loyal. To much technology is neaarly equivalent to too much clutter! Who has time to play with all the new toys?
- Rob
(2/17/2011 12:17:01 PM)   Flag as inappropriate content
Mary Beth, I wish you would have addressed your initial premise and the multitude of objections to it rather than just ignore them and talk about how great radio is today.

No one is debating that radio is incredibly powerful today. I talk to VCs in Silicon Valley every month, and they marvel at radio's reach and ability to evoke passion in its audience. Twitter CEO Dick Costolo tweeted about hearing a sports game on the radio and how it thrilled him. There in a nutshell is the perfect example of digital media immersing itself in the power of traditional radio.

But the current power and impact of radio isn't what we are talking about. We are talking about threats and technologies that are STARTING to have an impact on radio and will have an even bigger impact in the future. As Edison's Tom Webster pointed out in his blog, you can't just bury your head in the sand and hope that everything goes away.

You seem to be a big fan of PPM. If you want to get a glimpse of the future, take a look at the TSL trends. Overall listening is falling. If you REALLY want to get a glimpse of the future, look at teens. TSL among teens has fallen dramatically. Where is that listening going? Aren't you as a radio professional concerned? Is the proper strategy to watching your listeners spend less time with your medium to simply ignore it and just say, "We announce the weather at the top of the hour!"

It really appears, Mary Beth, that you are making the grave mistake of confusing people who are trying to point out a competitive threat with people who hate radio and think it sucks. Nothing could be further from the truth. I certainly love radio. I am confident in saying that Tom Webster loves radio. The thing is, we love radio so much that we want it to be healthy for years to come, not just today.

Ignoring the smoke on the horizon to point out how pretty the trees are in front of you won't stop the forest fire.

- Jim Kerr

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