If your station is playing Christmas music I’ve got good news and bad news.
The good news is that if you do it well you’ll eliminate your station’s biggest barrier for growth – playing music that is unfamiliar to a new audience.
The bad news is new listeners don’t understand what your station is about. They don’t have your perspective. They don’t understand the relationship of Ken and Barbie on the morning show, they don’t understand who for King and Country is and why they are doing concerts at a drive-in movie theatre, they don’t understand that your station plays Christmas music every year, and they don’t understand why you’re asking for money. (I once heard a general manager insist that new listeners loved fundraisers. No, he loved fundraisers, and his perspective impacted the station’s ability to be attractive to new listeners).
Do you know why Disney cast members wear tags with their name and hometown?
Frankly, Disney knows that you don’t care where they’re from – unless you’re also from there, or from near there, or have just been there, or have always wanted to go there, or wonder how they got from there to here. Disney knows that the name tag simply begins a conversation that can begin a relationship which can change the experience. And experience is what they are all about.
We’ve chatted a lot over these 536 Frost Advisories about how to grow your station. Growth is the fruit of adopting common ground; of making the unfamiliar familiar.
Many Christian stations serve only the Christian sub-culture talking primarily to churchgoing folks with a heavy emphasis on religious or spiritual content. Other stations desire to reach a broader audience which is often described as “spiritual, but not necessarily religious.” Those stations strive to be culturally relevant and talk like friends in the room. But that doesn’t mean that you talk about just anything.
Take this infamous day in history, November 22, 1963, as an example.
“Why are you playing Christmas music on Election Day?”
The complaints pour in.
“Why are you playing Christmas music before Thanksgiving?”
Think about it. If I’m driving around in my car and I tune in to your radio station in the middle of November and hear Burl Ives instead of Matthew West, I could be confused. Unless I understand “the why.”
“People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it. And what you do serves as proof of why you do it.”Simon Sinek, “Start with Why”
On Election Day our station votes for comfort and joy. In this political season our station is an escape from the negative headlines.
As you’re reading this you’ve probably seen people celebrating in the streets over the results of the election. But you also know that challenges are going to be filed in court this week related to possible voting irregularities.
So, who won the election?
More specifically for our little radio family… did your station “win” during this election?
That can only be answered, obviously, if we DEFINE the win.
These are curious times. Perhaps you’ve noticed.
“Everyone is upset about something today. As a result, a growing dearth of kindness is apparent in our marketplace interactions, most notably in our media and political discussions and debates. A spirit of unforgiveness has been unleashed in our land, and it’s consuming us.”Joe Battaglia, noted author and Yankee fan
Recently our niece shared how much she loved the Hallmark channel’s “Christmas in July.” She said, “I’m just looking for anything with a happy ending.”
Tuesday morning is coming. Election day is near.