Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #477: Does Your Positioning Phrase Matter?

It depends on what it is, but only rarely have I heard a Positioning phrase or slogan that actually matters, especially if it’s just touting things like “12 in a row” or “50-minute music hours,” or the nebulous “More music.”  (More music than what?  My refrigerator?)

Anybody who wants to do so can make those claims, and somebody will, I guess, but why settle for that?

Here’s what you really are:  What the listeners think you are when they listen to you.

So consider taking off a lot (or all) of the “sloganeering” and SHOW me why I should listen.  It starts with THIS time you open the mic.

Note: there are stations whose Imaging actually means something.  But I wouldn’t say they’re in the majority.

Frost Advisory #623 – Let’s Force Them To Listen More

Her name was Jane. She was the first girl I ever asked out on a date. She said no.

I convinced myself that it was because of the big zit on my forehead. Or that I wasn’t the quarterback on the football team. I found out later it was because she and her family went out of town.

We think we’re pretty important, don’t we?

It’s tempting to think our station fans’ (P1s’) behavior is a direct result of our programming tactics. I’ve hear otherwise reasonable people exclaim that ratings went up because of the new jingles, ratings went down because we didn’t hit the spot breaks within the bow tie, or question our ratings because we didn’t have a specific number of songs on our playlist. I’M NOT MAKING THIS UP, as Dave Barry would say. (See Frost Advisory #221-Up Is Good And Down Is Bad)

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Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #476: THE 2 Content Guidelines

All great air talents know this.  But the road from good to great is a little muddy sometimes.  So here’s an easy “sifting” tip – the only two real Content guidelines:

  1. Hopefully, what you’re talking about is something that the listener cares about.
  2. But it should at LEAST be something that the listener has an interest in.  Has.  Already.

Here are some questions to ask yourself: Continue reading

Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #475: If We’re Having Fun…

One of the most incomplete thoughts ever said to air talent is “If we’re having fun, the listener’s having fun.”

Ridiculous.  If the LISTENER’S having fun, the listener’s having fun.  You can be having a party in the control room, but if it doesn’t resonate with the listener, it doesn’t matter.

I ask this all the time: “Who’s our target listener?”

What I usually get is a white-page report being regurgitated to me, usually a demo bracket, some assumptions treated as fact, and not one example of how to pull that person in.  It’s hardly ever about one clearly targeted listener. Continue reading

Frost Advisory #621 – A Programming Lesson In Its Simplest Form

Jeepers! The fact that there are even 621 of these Frost Advisories (every week for pert near a dozen years) might suggest that there is a lot to this programming stuff. I reckon’ that’s so, and I love discussing higher concepts with smart people, but I also know there are some simple truths.

A simple truth is that there are only two distinct elements to programming a radio station.

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Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #474: Never Be Afraid To Learn More

The other night, casually watching a New York Yankees broadcast with the most excellent Michael Kay and former great pitcher David Cone, something really struck me that Cone said.

He was talking about a Yankees pitcher who had not had a good beginning last season, and made the decision to dramatically dive into the metrics that are available now – arm angle, spin rate, pitchers’ and batters’ “planes” that they pitch or swing on, etc.  He totally revitalized his career when he learned about what more spin means, rather than just speed.

Think about that.  These guys make millions of dollars, he’s done it one way his whole life, and all of a sudden, this guy makes a dramatic change.

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Frost Advisory #620 – A Programming Lesson From The Good Ole USA!

The celebration of our nation’s 246st birthday is a powerful lesson of focus, common ground, and emotion.

Over the last several decades in my other life, I’ve served as a semi-professional public address announcer for major league spring training and minor league baseball. That’s lots and lots and lots of dizzy bat races, seventh inning stretches, and National Anthem performances.

Do you know what I enjoy most? It’s when my voice is the cue for veterans and active service members to rise and be acknowledged for their sacrifice for our country. There is no applause that is louder.

What does that mean for your radio station?

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