Finding the Moment


(By Buzz Knight) Radio is in the immediacy business. When a client needs a quick response in the moment it produces a call to action. The medium produces action in communities when disaster hits. Sometimes there are timely and topical moments that are optimized as well. Radio needs to go looking for those moments much more frequently

Folks like Paige Neinaber and Phil Dowse are exceptionally gifted at this.

I believe that radio began looking less frequently for those moments when Diary measurement was replaced by PPM. Somehow Programmers felt it was less important to create a “buzz” for their brand because actual listening was being measured rather than required to be written down in a diary.

This was somewhat of a dangerous leap of faith.

I also think around that same time a few other things occurred that produced limiting behavior in “finding the moment” We are talking mid-2000’s when the shift occurred.

First thing was many programmers started asking less from their GM’s or Market Managers when they needed resources or approvals to “find a moment.” I remember when PDs had a small slush fund to use at their discretion for this very purpose many times as a resource for their morning show.

Second was fear of the internal legal vetting that is so important for brands to work through I can’t tell you how frequently I hear “I can’t ask our lawyer about doing this because they will just say no anyway.”

Either way we have a severe decline in brands finding a way to “make a moment” and stand out in the marketplace.

In some cases, this is a drought.

What got me thinking about this topic was the fallout with Spotify and Neil Young that is occurring I thought about how a classic rock station could seize the opportunity to “make a moment” when this controversy began unfolding

Apple Music and SiriusXM didn’t waste any time sticking it in Spotify’s face as Apple began touting “The Home of Neil Young Music” and Sirius extended there already in place Neil Young channel and shifted it to their Deep Tracks channel.

Why couldn’t radio either create a pop-up HD channel that makes this moment with all Neil or somehow twist this event upside down in its favor by positioning their allegiance to one of their founding artists?

If it was me, I’d be just as ticked off that streaming services beat me to the punch on an opportunity to make a moment.

Go out of your way to “make a moment”

Every day every week

Autopilot, Automation and Automatic responses are recipes for automatic failure



Buzz Knight is the CEO of Buzz Knight Media and can be reached by e-mail at [email protected]


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