By: John Lund, Lund Management
There’s a factor in all ratings, even PPM metered markets, which goes beyond actual listening. The stations that are better branded and own a market image produce better ratings. The truth is that brand awareness brings about business. It’s true for Nike and Starbucks, two of the best brands around. Scott Bedbury counts those two brands on his marketing resume and offers this advice: “A great brand is in it for the long haul. It taps into emotions and becomes a powerful connecting experience.”
In broadcasting, a well-branded station has tremendous top-of-mind awareness, and that translates into bigger cume. In diary and telephone ratings, that alone becomes a ratings halo that can transcend actual listening. It’s the first station people think of when asked for a station name. As with Starbucks and Nike, it’s the “experience.” Our challenge as programmers is about sharing experiences with listeners and making them feel good about themselves and about the time they spend with the station. It’s being an essential ingredient in their routine because you give them what they need. In branding, it’s an emotional response that connects.
Begin the branding process by identifying your unique offerings in addition to your music product.
- What is it about your station that your listeners and viewers cannot live without?
- What do you do to drive audience passion?
- What does your morning show do that is different from other stations, and why is it better? Avoid being too similar, and don’t do a midday request show because everyone else does. Make your offering unique.
- Personalize your weather to your market activities and listener needs.
- Are your website and social media truly interactive?
- Are your promotions super-serving the listener?
A brand is the trip, not the destination. Make your station a strong brand that is top-of-mind and on the “most respected, most listened to” list in one’s brain. We have assembled the best branding tips for stations in one easy to use guide. To better brand your station and its key benefits to listeners, get the Lund Branding and Marketing Guide in the Radio Resource Center.