A Loyal Reader Writes:
“Our radio station is in a small market. The big city is 30 miles away, and when there are concerts there we get very few tickets and these days we give them away more over the Internet instead of on the radio.
“I think this is a mistake because it takes away from the connection we try to build up with our listeners.
“Radio is personal. The Internet isn’t. What do you think?”
Well, the Internet can be personal, too.
But I agree with the Loyal Reader.
A small market station giving away tickets to a hot concert in the big city is exciting.
That excitement should be on its airwaves, live.
Those concert tickets give you an excuse to:
* Air a fun/exciting/engaging promotion that encourages people to listen longer or more often.
* Have your jocks talk about something exciting — the build-up to the giveaway.
* Tantalize your audience.
* Motivate your listeners to urge their friends to listen to your radio station, “So we can win those tickets!”
* Put listeners on the air — the winners and, perhaps, contestants who “play the game” without winning.
* Give a gift to all the other listeners who don’t win those tickets but are entertained by your highly listenable contest.
* Air post-contest promos, celebrating your winners and conditioning your audience to keep listening for more exciting prizes.
* Energize your DJs. It’s fun to give away great prizes.
* Have fun, with your listeners, on the air.
With all those obvious reasons to give away hot concert tickets on-air, why do so many radio stations relegate them to their little-trafficked websites?
Well, I just mentioned one reason: “little-trafficked.” The station wants to drive traffic to the website.
But driving traffic to a website that has nothing that makes the visitor want to stay or return is worthless.
The other, larger reason:
It’s more efficient.
You don’t need to explain the rules to the air talent, don’t need to come up with a fun contest structure. Best of all, you don’t even need to talk to any of those darn listeners.
When given the choice between effective radio and efficient radio, far too many programmers opt for efficiency.
A long-term, highly rated, high revenue station doesn’t run on autopilot.
If you want efficiency, go to McDonald’s.
If you want excitement, turn on a radio station that encourages its humans to interact as often as possible with the humans in its audience.
Download Dan O’Day’s book,
Great Radio Promotions and Contests.