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Will Radio Come To A Sudden Stop?

History is a funny thing. It keeps repeating itself, yet people continue to ignore the past and assume history can't catch up to them. Those of us in radio especially seem to think we're exempted from history. Every generation or so, there seems to be a dramatic change in almost every industry. But most of us in radio assume our great ride will continue forever. What happens if we come to a sudden stop one day?
Historically, it has happened to hundreds of businesses. A well established industry is strong one day, then suddenly a game changer is announced. People make a lot of noise about the game changer -- including the established industry, which tells everyone all the reasons the new thing won't work. The game changer doesn't seem to catch on too quickly, and the strong industry gets stronger. Then, like a light switch being flipped, consumers have gone over to the game changer overnight and that strong, established industry flounders and eventually disappears.
Over the last two decades, it's happened dozens of times. The industries that come to mind are travel agencies, photo processing and film cameras, newspapers, and television. But what about radio?
Passion For Radio
I'm passionate about radio. It's been in my blood for decades, and I continue to believe in radio's power to inform, entertain, and sell product, and transform small advertisers into big businesses. But I fear we too could be one of those established industries that is clinging to the past. Though all the evidence points to a secure industry for now, to stability in our listenership, there is a possibility that one day we will wake up to find a game changer has taken away our business.

Will You Let It Happen?
The tendency in our industry today is to rely on the big groups for leadership. After all, it's easy for Clear Channel, Cumulus, or others to make the decisions about the direction of the industry. Though both those companies are deeply invested in the future, what if they're wrong? History shows that most big organizations have a hard time innovating and are less willing to cannibalize.
Change Comes From Individuals
What if you were the one person who created a bright new future for this industry? Yes, you. I know we all tend to think it will be someone else who reinvents our industry, but you're as likely to be that person as anyone. I recently read an article about a man in Atlanta who was broke, came up with an idea for his industry, and now, a few short years later, is slated to own the New York Stock Exchange. He is the most unlikely person to do this, but his ideas are setting the world on fire. You could be the equivalent for radio.
Fine-Tuning Your Brain
Those of us who drive a desk daily tend to get stuck in our routines. We show up, we follow the same path day in and day out, and each day is much like the last. But deep down inside, our brains are telling us we need to be growing, we need to be challenged, we need greatness to come out of our routine. Yet the only way to harness that power and greatness is to ready your brain. You need to be thinking about the things that are changing, so you can clearly see the one thing you can do at your radio station that might end up revolutionizing the entire industry.
Fertile Ground
Life is like gardening. You ready the soil, you nurture it, water it, keep the weeds out, and watch it grow. I'd like to offer you a place to get your brain ready to take yourself, your station, your future to the next level. I'd like to take you away from your comfort zone and expose you to ideas and concepts that are changing the world around you. Most important, I want to show you new ways you can put more money on the books at your radio station that you won't find ANYWHERE else.
If you're a broadcaster, I'd like to invite you to join us for the brain stretch of the year … Radio Ink's Convergence, set for March 4-5 in Santa Clara, in California's Silicon Valley. Everyone who attends always says…
-       I wish I had known about this years ago
-       This is the best conference in radio
-       This is unlike any conference in radio
-       These aren't not the same people we see at all the other radio events
-       I actually left with ideas I can make money with today
We've Noticed A Pattern
There are people who attend Convergence who have been doing so every year without missing a beat. We've noticed that these same people are the ones leading radio in digital revenues and digital content, and who are outbilling most other radio companies and stations in digital. That's no coincidence. This conference will change the way you think about digital and making money for your station. It's not theory, it's not hype, it's not "the future." It's what you can do today.
Advertisers Are Begging Traditional Media To Step Up
Advertisers have told us that radio won't be getting dollars unless we have deep digital offerings, and that if we don't step up with something new and different, we won't get their business. That will find its way down to every market, and even the smallest stations, very quickly. Now is the time to stretch your brain, ready yourself for 2013 and 2014, and move  on to a new way of thinking. Advertisers are there now.

Are you leading your station in the direction it needs to go?
Are you training your brain and your skills for the changes in media that have already begun?
Do you want to find new ways to bring immediate digital revenue to your operation and offerings to your advertisers?
If so, we invite you to join us for Radio Ink's Convergence.
Look at this lineup of incredible keynote speakers.  (Note: These are not people you'll typically see at radio-industry events. We do this to expose you to concepts we think you need to know.)

Tim Draper, Managing Partner, Draper Fisher Jurvetson; leading Silicon Valley venture capitalist
John C Dvorak, host, daily Tech5 podcast and weekly podcasts This Week in Tech and No Agenda with Adam Curry; tech columnist, Dow Jones Marketwatch; columnist, PC Magazine
Leo Laporte, host, The Tech Guy, author, speaker
Norm Pattiz, CEO, Courtside Entertainment; founder, Westwood One
Nichole Kelly, CEO, Social Media Explorer/SME Digital; author, How to Measure Social Media
Ken Rutkowski, co-founder, Business Rock Stars

As well as these stellar Convergence panelists:
Daniel Anstandig, President/CEO, Listener Driven Radio          
Jacquelyn R. Bullerman, Digital Media Manager, Arbitron Inc.
Scott Burnell, Global Lead, Business/Development & Partner Management, Ford Motor Company     
Duane Cofield, IA Strategist/Soc. Media Com. Mgr, KJHL Radio       
Alan Cross, Professional Music Geek           
James Derby, Chief Strategy Office, Federated Media and Federated Interactive      
Mike Dougherty, CEO/Co-Founder, Jelli            
Scott Fleischer, Sr. Manager/Programming, TuneIn 
Maya Grinberg, Chief Evangelist and Social Media Manager, Wildfire, a Division of Google        
Dr. Frankie James, Managing Director/Advanced Technology Office/Silicon Valley, General Motors      
Evan Harrison, EVP/Content and Entertainment, Univision Radio         
Paul Jacobs, General Manager, Jacobs Media          
J.Love, Marketron Interactive Management Consultant, Corus Entertainment         
Tom Kenney, President, Verve Mobile           
Buzz Knight, VP/Program Development, Greater Media          
Danica Kombol, Managing Partner, Everywhere           
Larry Marcus, Managing Director, Walden Venture Capital         
Kathleen McMahon, VP/Sales & Marketing, SoundHound Inc.         
Lisa Moore, Internet Director, KSBY, & The Central Coast CW    

Gregg Murray, Creator, iRadioSales            
Dave Presher,  President/CEO, Involution Digital           
Ruth Presslaff, President, Presslaff Interactive Revenue          
Scott Roesch, Head of News & Entertainment Business Development,    
Valerie Shuman, VP/Industry Programs, Connected Vehicle Trade Association     
Doug Sterne, VP/Audio Sales, Pandora           
Rockie Thomas, VP/Business Developments, AdsWizz           
Cory Treffiletti, SVP/Marketing, BlueKai            
David Verklin, Marketing Consultant            
Adam Wiener, SVP/Content, Community, and Operations, CBS Local Digital Media    
Jed Williams, Sr. Analyst/Program Director of Social Local Media, BIA/Kelsey      
Ken Williams, Co-President/CEO, Dial Global           
Stephanie Winans, Social Media Platforms           

Eric Rhoads

Register for Convergence HERE