Radio has always been a trendsetter. Whether introducing a new single, analyzing sports highlights or playing Top 40 hits, it’s a great way to generate buzz. But continuing to be convenient word-of-mouth medium in a social media dominated landscape presents a challenge. To help build lasting relationships with your listeners, keep these five trends in mind going into 2015.
1. Insights Drive Radio
2. Mobile Friendly Matters
3. Build an Interactive Ecosystem
4. Stay in Tune with New Technologies
5. Understand Your Audience’s Habits
Insights Drive Radio
Don’t just focus on where your audience is listening from. Get to know who they are and what they care about. Obtaining these insights is easier than you think! In fact, 72% of people who stream radio expressed a strong willingness to provide registration information in exchange for access to station streams. Collecting meaningful data is huge asset for crafting email campaigns, strategizing content, and exciting advertisers with unique opportunities.
Mobile First Matters
It’s not news that two thirds of radio listeners are also using a smartphone, therefore your content must be readily available to your mobile users. Being “mobile first” allows stations to ensure that content is both is compatible with all users, and crafted with them in mind! The majority of today’s listeners are tuning from their vehicles, and probably looking for casual entertainment or information. But why wait for them for get back on the road? Your audience is mobile, and your streams and content should be too.
Build an Interactive Ecosystem
Not only is your audience consuming more digital content than ever, they’re expecting more of it all the time. Meet this need through creative, strategically placed content across your social media outlets, and drive conversations across all digital platforms- like in on-air programs! Your social space is an interactive ecosystem, in which discussion builds engagement and a harmonious stream of content. Discussions can result from comments, comments from shares, shares from likes, and likes from your initial posts! You can satisfy the demand for content while strengthening your brand with every piece you share.
Stay in Tune with New Technology
It is critical for radio to stay ahead of technology and incorporate it into their brands. Researching and reporting on how consumer behaviour in your target markets are changing is one of the most effective ways to seize opportunities. We’ve already touched on radio’s need to stay viable in an environment with an overwhelming demand for personal and connected technologies. Since 70% of radio listeners have used and engaged with a connected car in the past year, it’s imperative to adapt to changing vehicle audio systems. To keep in-car listeners engaged, ensure that your stream is at par or better quality than your stream-only competitors.
Understand Your Audience’s Habits
Don’t think of your audience’s digital interactions as trends. Turn them into long-term habits. Using analytics to understanding who your fans are, which parts of your programs they listen to, and how they interact with you off the air is radio's new success factor! Communicating with listeners can start in the morning and last all day, since 67% of Millennials and 60% of Generation Z use their smart phone as an alarm clock. Ideally, listeners who wake up to your shows will be able to connect with you on-air, online, and through your content. At any time of the day, invest in opportunities to increase engagement, and never undervalue listening to your listeners.