A recent conversation with a program director new to the format reminded me of an idea that I wished I had understood two decades ago coming from a world of mainstream radio.
People don’t tune to your station because of what YOU are, they tune to your station because of who THEY are.
“Sometimes you have to watch somebody love something before you can love it yourself.”Donald Miller, “Blue Like Jazz”
In baseball, the pitcher and catcher better know what the other is likely to do. If you’re a pitcher and throw the wrong pitch, what you don’t want is for the catcher to have to wait for it to stop rolling before he picks it up.
That’s why they use signals.
Sir Paul McCartney has just had his 80th birthday! And he celebrated by doing what he loves; touring and playing music like he’s done for more than 60 of those 80 years.
If it seems curious that a Frost Advisory would be about a Rock and Roll Hall of Famer becoming an octogenarian, stick with me.
Trying too hard – whether it’s to be funny, to really “sell” something, or to ingratiate yourself to the listener – just doesn’t work out well in the long run.
Yes, we all do it when we first start out, but a developed talent realizes sooner or later that “trying” can be FELT on the other end of the radio – and it pushes the Listener away.
In my travels I’ve found almost all discussions about programming revolve around things close to us; the music and deejays, the promotions and contests, the clocks and service elements. While these elements are important to the station’s design, they are not transformative. Why? Because those things are all about us. And the closer things are to us the more important they seem. To us.
The great brands (and stations) go beyond the nuts and bolts of design and reach into their listeners’ lives.