Are you getting enough credit for your listening?
Programming for radio is a memory game – it is all about recall and getting credit for listening.
Radio Today spoke to some radio programming experts about the subject of getting credit, and found some recurring themes.
Here’s some of their thoughts and conclusions.
It’s always interesting to hear a station promoting the ‘Jack and Jill’ Breakfast Show and their $10,000 Secret Sound or the ‘Tom, Dick and Harry’ Show’s Great Aussie Holiday.
Station features, promotions, contests and events are a part of the success of any station or show, so in markets that are rated what is the best way to brand these tactics?
Well, it depends where you are in your product cycle as a station and as a show.
For newer, lower rating stations or shows that are rebuilding or flanking, you’re best served branding everything with your station brand (and, at times, frequency).
These newer stations in rebuild mode should brand everything with the station name – for instance, ‘The Starfm Secret Sound’ and ‘The Starfm Breakfast Show’ or ‘Starfm News Update’. It helps listeners remember what station they listened to.
The station name is where the diary recall will come from, along with the station’s frequency. That’s all listeners need to remember.
On the other side of the coin, leading stations with top rating heritage shows can afford the luxury of using the Breakfast show name, and should leverage off its strength.
We’ve seen it time and time again, but there will always be a temptation to brand with Breakfast show names because we want the audience to remember and familiarise themselves with the talent – but this is only something that will happen over time.
Ultimately it’s a recall and ratings game, based entirely on a listener’s perceived listening that they are able to recall and they fill in the ratings diaries accordingly.
In the Australian ratings diary system, there are three things to recall a station by. Station brand, frequency, positioning statement. That’s it!
At the end of the day, regardless of which Breakfast show they listened to (or if they listened for an hour or across the entire workday), your audience needs to remember the station or frequency to fill in the diaries. This is what generates ratings.
When it comes to Breakfast show names (and Drive names for that matter), it’s a fact that short, easy to remember names are best.
Names like Hamish and Andy, Jonesy and Amanda, Kyle and Jackie O, The Grill Team are a lot easier to remember than FiFi, Fev and Byron or Chrissie, Sam and Browny, Luke Bradman with Libby & Dobbo, or The Ash, Kip and Luttsy show with Susie O’Neill.
Not to take anything away from these shows, as most of them are successful.
Keep it simple – three names are better than four, two names are better than three and one name is even better. Remember Seinfeld?
Of course, there are other considerations besides marketing and ratings to consider in the billing of a show.
Always remember the old KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) principle; it never fails.