Radio Lessons #76 – Aussie Rules Football

It’s the biggest week in the AFL calendar but unless you live in Australia you likely don’t know that.

And even if you DO live in Australia, unless you live in a handful of cities, there is a pretty good chance you don’t care.

What makes this puzzling is the fact that the AFL Grand Final is the most attended single professional game on the planet. Average attendance is just shy of 100,000 people – that’s 10,000 more than an FA Cup Final in England and 30,000 more than the Super Bowl in the US.

So, if this game is so colossally big and so enthusiastically embraced, how come no-one knows or cares about it? It’s a local thing. And passion is relative. In the cities of Melbourne and Adelaide right now, the Grand Final is the ONLY thing that matters in the whole world as they countdown to bounce. It is a religion there and the holy day is approaching. Outside of those places there will be excited fans of the sport and perhaps lovers of one of the two teams playing but not the fervor you can feel on Punt Road or Brebner Drive right now.

Tapping into local passion is what makes radio, great radio. Ask yourself two questions every single day. What makes today, today? And what makes YOUR CITY, YOUR CITY?

Bring the answers to these questions to life and you win. In fact, we all win. The answers to these questions fundamentally keep radio relevant as a medium and all of our future’s bright. Lose sight of them and we lose sight of our listeners. We become meaningless jukeboxes in an instant. Speak the language of your audience, feel what they feel and become part of the fabric of the market. While your competition is still grasping that concept, you have the lead.

Topical localism is the goal – and it’s worth more than six points.

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