The station was about to launch a syndicated morning show. The program director called to ask an odd question. He actually asked whether he should promote the show. Should we promote the show? Really?
I gave the PD the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps he meant to ask how to promote the show or when to promote the show or what to promote. But he clarified. The question was if it was a good idea to introduce listeners to a new morning show.
Let’s see. There’s a talk show with a cast of personalities that’s brand new to the audience. The previous show is gone, and they played 8-10 songs per hour. It’s probably a good idea to find a way to sell it to the audience.
Should We Promote The Show?
Taken literally, it’s kind of a silly question, right? What is the equivalent in other businesses:
- Movie Theaters: I wonder if we should tell people what time the movie starts?
- TV Shows: Won’t people figure out what service the new show is on and what it’s about?
- Books: Why don’t we just wait for folks to discover that a new Nelson DeMille book has been released?
- Concerts: Taylor Swift will just show up and perform at the arena. Everyone will figure it out and buy tickets, right?
- Cars: There’s a huge car sale this weekend, but since the prices are so good do we need to advertise?
We understand the importance of promotion until it comes to radio brands. An alarming number of broadcasters expect listeners to figure it out on their own.
Yes, it’s important to promote the show.
How To Promote The Show
Some radio shows are more promotable than others. But every show should be promoted, at least on your own station.
When: Don’t assume those tuned in are familiar with the personalities. A large percentage of those tuned in are not fans. Reinforce brand values, listener benefits, and character traits with imaging and promos during the show. Here are some examples.
Then, develop a campaign to convert non-morning listeners. Every programmer should track the percentage of the station cume that listens to the morning show. Check it out. It will shock you. Those who already listen to the station are prime candidates to turn on the morning show
Where To Promote: This is more nuanced, depending on the strength of the show. As a show grows, promote it more with on-air real estate. But there are many ways to generate attention.
Make it easy to find morning show content on the website. Start with a website audit and ensure content is highly visible. Another option: Buy a domain for the show. This sounds big and is easy to promote. If you don’t want to manage a new website, just redirect the URL to the morning show page on the station website.
Then develop a social media strategy. Personalities should have their own social presence. Trying to find show content on a station’s social feed is nearly impossible. And frustrating.
Advising management that it’s a good idea to promote the most high-profile programming on the station seems obvious but in the daily grind of keeping multiple stations on the air, it’s often overlooked.
Should we promote the show? Of course. If the show is not worthy of promotion, why is it on? We can help find a new show or fix the one you have.