The Customer Experience

28 06 2011

I was reading Fred Jacobs’ blog and he was talking about CX – Customer Experience.   As a Program Director/Brand Manager, I began to think about the role I play in providing the best CX for the listeners of my radio station.  It’s imperative that the entire programming staff understand the mission of the radio station and who their audience is so that we can provide the best customer experience possible when they tune in.  Here’s some questions to ponder:

-What is the mission of your radio station?

-Are you meeting the expectations of your listeners every time they tune in?

-Is your station fun, local and relatable?

-Do your contests make sense and are they easy to play along?

-Are you playing the hits versus the misses?

-Is the airstaff talking about things important to your P1’s?

If you haven’t done a “CX Checkup” lately, maybe now is a good time.


Know Your Listener

21 04 2011

Regardless of format, always run everything you plan to do on air through the “who cares?” filter.  That filter should be specific to your demographic.  That means you have to know who it is you are talking to when you crack the mic.  Your P1 listener might be a 35 year old female with two kids and an SUV or a 40 year old male that has a Harley and a dog.  Whatever the scenario, the criteria of the content you generate has to be relevant to your target listener.  Now, let’s take it a step further.  Let’s go beyond just a mental picture of that listener.  Think about what that person’s life might be like.  What kinds of things are they dealing with on a daily basis that might drive them to your radio station for a release.  Let’s say you work for a country station and your target listener is that 35 year old female we mentioned earlier.  Beyond what she might look like or drive, what might she encounter daily.  It could be that she is so busy constantly running kids here and there that she doesn’t have the time she would like to keep the house clean and cook a nutritious meal a few times a week.  Thinking about things like this could be the foundation for a promotion that offers her a chance to win house cleaning for a year and dinner out once week.  Doing these kinds of exercises is essential in becoming a top level air talent, and if you are a Program Director why not hold regular sessions with your jocks to create a listener filter.  You will find that the personal connection you make with listeners will generate a loyal audience and brand your station and air talent as more than just a “dj.”

Listeners Still Count On Us

11 03 2011

A listener called the morning show this morning and asked me if I knew how close the earthquake and tsunami in Japan were to Yokozuna because she had a family member there.  I attempted to do a little searching online and tried to help her as best I could with the brief amount of time I had before the break.  Before she hung up, she commented that “you guys were the only ones I could think of that would know.”  Wow.  As a Program Director and air personality, it really made me stop and think about how important radio truly is to our listeners.  Such a short, quick statement like that reassures me that local terrestrial radio is not dead or dying.  But…I believe we owe to our listeners to provide entertaining, compelling local content and when a call like this comes in don’t blow them off or let ego take over but give them that brief moment to show them that there is a reason why they thought to call the radio station FIRST.

Is Facebook Your Station Website?

8 03 2011

I was reading Jaye Albright’s blog the other day about station websites and whether we should ditch them or not.  This is something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately and I believe the role of our main radio station website has changed drastically.  Let’s face it, our Facebook accounts/pages have actually become our station website. 
The ability to interact quickly and directly with your listeners is one of the ultimate features of having a station Facebook page.  Also, the ability to upload pictures from an onsight event then and there right from your smartphone is a great feature.  No more bringing the station camera back after an appearance, putting the memory card in the reader on your PC, uploading photos, resizing them in photoshop and then posting to the station website or sending them to your webmaster and waiting.  DJ blogs and photo galleries are two of the least viewed pages on radio statio websites yet we spend so much time worrying about keeping that “content” up-to-date.  I think we need to turn our station websites into very basic and easy to navigate info portals with plenty of general information about the radio station and its advertisers and continue to utilize Facebook as the interactive portal to our listeners.

Brand Manager? Content Director?

5 02 2011

So apparently I am no longer a Program Director.  The landscape of programming a radio station has changed…drastically.  While scheduling music logs and writing witty little sweepers is still part of our role today, it is just one of the many responsibilities of a PD.  The radio “Program Director” in 2011 is faced with the task of not only the “on-air brand” but the “online brand” and the “on demand” brand.  We have to continue to polish the sound of the on-air product by playing the best of the best songs, writing and producing creative imaging, and critiquing the airstaff.  At the same time, it is our responsibility to expand the brand of the radio station beyond the radio.  We also MUST be doing the social networking thing.  Facebook is to an air personality today what the request line was 20 years ago.  It is your lifeline to your P1 listener.  If you are a PD and your station does not have a Facebook page or if you are a jock without a page then I’m assuming you are still playing records.  Twitter is of course the other hot social site of the moment, but I think people and radio stations are still tapping into it and trying to get a good grip on ways to utilize it best.  So recent discussions have begun where I work to change the title of our Program Directors:  Brand Manager?  Content Manager or Director?  I mean, those titles do better describe the role of the PD today.  We’re expanding the overall brand of the station to all of these various forms of entertainment for the listener, finding as many new ways of delivering compelling content as possible.  I think I’m more in favor of Brand Manager because ultimately branding our product into the brains of our listeners is our daily goal.  To me, managing content sounds like something I could pay a part-timer to do.  What do you think?