The Fastest Way To Increase Radio Ratings Is to Reduce Tune-Out [audio]

The Fastest Way To Increase Radio Ratings Is to Reduce Tune-Out [audio]

by Tracy Johnson

Every time you turn on the mic, you start over. Think about your target listener choosing their station by listening with the radio on scan. When it’s on scan, you have just a few seconds to reduce tune-out.

This may be the greatest common ssense lesson a programmer can learn. by keeping listeners on your station, you earn more quarter hours. So doesn’t it make sense to focus more time and attention on transitions from one type of content to another?

Listeners may not be literally listening on scan, but their brains are on scan. And it’s just as difficult to capture their attention as if it were.

The fact is that you have just seven seconds to get attention, whether they physically tune out by pushing the button or just stop hearing you.

And when they stop hearing you (mental tune out), they’re one step closer to physical tune out.

Don’t think it’s all that important? Think again. We lose up to 40% (and sometimes more) of our audience to tune out in a short period of time.

Reduce Tune-out: Program to How They Listen

This short video demonstrates how the audience actually listen to the radio.

Notice how quickly decisions are made.

Knowing this, how will you change your approach? What adjustments can you make that will cause the audience to become interested in the break?

How can you start faster and get into the content quickly? If the hook is that important, should you devote more preparation time to finding the one(s) that will work best?

Ratings Impact

Doesn’t it makes sense that the best way to get more quarter-hour credit is convincing existing listeners to stay a little longer? They already like you. They’re already tuned in. Just hang onto them a couple more minutes.

This can have a dramatic ratings impact. In fact, it’s the most important ingredient of doubling your ratings.


Attracting a larger audience is hard. When you have them, keep them. You’ll be amazed at how it raises your audience levels.

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