Don’t Forget Your Core


(By Charlie Sislen) Like many industries, radio is going through a tremendous transition. With the way people utilize audio entertainment today, radio station management has opportunities to increase its top line by focusing on new revenue opportunities.

Management should have sales teams looking for revenue opportunities with:
– Streaming audio
– Podcasting
– Digital advertising
– New NTR opportunities
– Using attribution as a revenue source.

Few will argue that it is important to spend time and resources on these new opportunities.

As a sales rep, or even a local sales manager, it comes down to focus and time. As you dedicate limited resources, it is imperative not to ignore radio’s chief source of revenue – selling broadcast commercials.

As we start a new year, management and each localsales person need to ask the question: “What am I going to do to grow my spot business?” It comes down to the basic blocking and tackling of radio sales. However, if we forget the basics, it will be difficult to support any of these future initiatives.

What are (just) some of those basic blocking and tackling strategies?
– Scouring qualitative sources (like Scarborough and The Media Audit) to find potential new advertisers that are ideal for your radio station.
– Communicating frequently with your existing advertisers about their needs and making sure they are satisfied with their advertising investment.
– Regularly promoting broadcast audio as a vibrant entertainment choice that is still effective at moving products and services.
– Making sure your radio station is recognized as a part of the community.

When was the last time any of these elements was the focus of your sales meeting? Do you or your station have the focus and tools in place to grow your base? Without concerted effort and proper attention, this base of your station’s financial success will not grow, and will likely shrink.

Please understand that new initiatives are important for the long-term success of our industry. Most will also agree that resources at the local station level are limited. Therefore, the important question is how you allocate those resources (which includes your time) to maximize your success in 2020 and beyond. Focusing on your base of spot radio needs to be front and center. Without securing this base, the other initiatives will not have the resources they need to succeed.

Charlie Sislen is a partner at Research Director, Inc. He can be reached at 410-956-0363 or by e-mail at [email protected]. This post is part of a series titled “Growing the Radio Pie.” To view past articles, visit The Ratings Experts at Research Director, Inc. online here.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here