Attacking the Medium: Radio is also Stupid

Posted on March 5, 2012

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After last week’s post “Defending the Medium: Radio is Already Great,” where I debunked each part of an article that ran on the AOL Daily Finance page titled “Why Terrestrial Radio Will Never Be Great Again,” I think it’s time to also point out why our industry continues to fall victim to a negative images and provide a few suggestions that could help.

Here’s the problem: The radio industry is utterly incapable of finding a way to effectively tell positive stories about our medium in the mainstream press. We’ve never been able to do it successfully and I have no reason to think we will start anytime soon.

So here’s my suggestion: Instead of worrying about press coverage, let’s use our resources to market the medium.

For years nearly the entire industry ran spots promoting HD Radio. Most of the major broadcasters came together as the HD Radio Alliance and committed to running a certain number of those commercials.

The same broadcasters should form the Terrestrial Radio Alliance and commit a similar amount of airtime to promoting the strengths and benefits of AM/FM radio. I’m sure we have a number of great production people who could create spots that would do a great job of telling positive stories about radio.

If that’s too complicated I have another idea that goes back to radio’s roots.

Let’s develop a pro-radio slogan and logo that fits nicely on a bumper sticker. Convince a company like Communications Graphics to print the stickers at, or very close to, cost and have the major broadcasters buy one for every employee.

If every programming, sales, management and support person in the industry across the entire country put a pro-radio sticker on their vehicle it would be a heck of a great marketing campaign.

I’m happy to stick up for radio in the face of poorly written articles like the one from last week but it would sure help renew my faith in the industry if I actually saw some effort being made to change the negative perceptions of radio that remain out there.

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