September 3, 2013

How Much Talk Should a Music Station Offer?

What is the role of talk versus music on a music radio station and how can a station find the right balance between the two? I recently did an interview with Richard Sands for his August 22 edition of the Sands Report. We discussed how the rule of thumb in PPM for music stations is that audience levels are higher when they are playing songs versus almost anything else they do, but how this has unfortunately created cultures at many music stations that prevent their DJs from connecting with their audience and limit them to simply playing music.

At Coleman Insights, we have found that personalities who can deliver world class and/or hyper local content will ultimately help their stations develop the right personality image. This is crucial because personality imagery is generally the second-most important image for a music station to develop, based on our Image PyramidSM philosophy. A great on-air personality can help make your brand unique and different because they can relate to the audience and share local, real-life experiences, something that a personal music collection or most streaming channels can’t do. Without having a brand that has more “hooks” for listeners to connect with than simply being a source of music they like, a station may never bring in the Cume it has the potential to attract.  The bigger Cume audience that a deep brand attracts makes the short-term audience losses your station may sometimes experience when going from music to personality content is almost always worth the trade-off.


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