The top 5 ‘Must Do NOW’ list

Radio Consultancy

"Must-Do-NOW" lists have proven themselves powerful and focusing throughout my illustrious career.

From my time in the Far West Wolf Creek Boy Scouts where I (literally) led the remaining survivors out of the desert* – to leading Nova Sydney, Capital London, GWR Group Programming, and various Austereo stations in The Ancient 1990s.

Combined with a working compass and a decorative woggle, these lists really do save lives.

So, piggybacking off Eriks' recent post, here is a “Must Do NOW!” list of a few things worth obsessing about this week and next… 

In no particular order, here are the headlines. (Details follow).

#1) Get on

#2) Now all the awards hype is over – get on these movies instead

#3) If you’re going to talk about “What was on TV last night”, try this

#4) Refresh your Show Planning systems

#5) Know where your audience is – and what they’re doing

And now the details…

#1) – the phenomenally fast growing online pinboard

It’s ancient history for many, but if it isn’t ancient history for you because you were too busy reminiscing about Hanson's first single, get on is spreading like an Olympic male gymnast.

(Hello boys)

Who on your team should starting using it today? Hosts/presenters and all celebrity guests, jocks, music directors, content and online team. With less effort than posing with a botox smile, it's easy to come up with ways to use it creatively. And there's no point forming an exploratory committee to mull over – it really is far less complex than reading with your mouth closed, so it doesn't warrant ponderous discussion. Just do it.

Here are reasons why it’s worth getting onto … pronto. Business clients report it impacts online traffic instantly – for one client it started generating online traffic while they were still figuring out how to use it. And some U.S websites claim it creates more traffic than search (SEO).

Besides which: some of your talent will find it easier to interact with your audience using than through daily blogging. Two finger typing is slow, and some people aren’t used to operating the internet with both hands, so is ideal.

They can click with one hand and point at the pictures with the other.

Here are some good quick introductory articles about

* The Atlantic – know your internet

* Harvard Business Review – pinterest is free market research

* Harvard Business Review – meet your pinterest customer

#2) Now the awards are over – get on the movies your audience will actually pay to see (and hear)

Lot of big movies coming out soon, none of them with subtitles. The Hunger Games is one, The Lorax is another, and there are several more besides. I’ll use The Lorax as a specific example as it will have broader appeal for more stations – and it just ram-raided the U.S box office, taking $70+ million in less time than it takes to find out how many people on your increasingly Gen-Y team were born after Adele.

The Lorax is the kind of movie the entire Nova Sydney imaging sound was based on back in The Ancient Times of the early-mid 2000s (Nova Sydney’s sound was based on the first Shrek movie, but you get the idea). 

I’m not talking about just using movie drops – I’m talking about using the whole creative approach behind a movie and applying it to the station sound. Your imaging team is not in competition with other radio stations. It is in direct competition with every other form of entertainment available to your audience –blockbuster movies, games, video, music, augmented reality, etc. 

Happy to discuss how to take that approach, if it’ll help – just email.

#3) If you’re going to talk about “What was on TV last night”, try this

We’re half-way through this particular TV series, so it’s hardly new news. Yet some radio shows are “talking about what was on TV last night” – and missing the dartboard. Until this series of My Kitchen Rules is over, “what was on TV last night” … starts with MKR.

Most of the time there are several TV shows vying for “most-watched / most talked-about”. Everyone gets to pick a show to watch and viewing gets shared around. But right now the television set in Prison Block Australia is being controlled by Bubba. Bubba wants to watch MKR. And talk about it afterwards.

Or make love. Your choice.

This series of MKR is by far the most talk-worthy, mass-appeal television show we’re likely to see for quite a while. No other Australian production will be getting almost 2 million viewers every night until much later in the year. That’s right: every night MKR gets more than double the audience of it’s nearest rival on a competitor network. And MKR is not about cooking – it’s all about great, primal, relationship-based story arcs.

So it’s such a pity to hear perfectly good radio shows talking about what happened last night on Hillbilly Hand Fishin’.

Stop it. You’re scaring my kinfolk.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not remotely saying don’t talk about any other television shows. Do talk about other television shows. The other monster show is Revenge (for Monday drive / Tuesday breakfast). Revenge is show content and Imaging gold! Only someone who uses their tongue as chewing gum would disagree. And if New Girl is bullseye for your particular target audience, get Zooey Deschanel on every Monday morning if you can.

And there are a few other current TV shows worth considering for your Daily Show Plan, like Please Marry My Boy. But for the next few weeks, at least, every other TV show is waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay back in your Show Planning queue after MKR.

#4) Review and refresh your Show Planning process and systems

Quarterly or bi-annual exercise worth doing now if you didn’t do it over the Christmas break as The Lord intended: revise and freshen the whole Show Planning process. Like everything, even the way you go about Show Planning needs a regular re-set and refresh. Go over the whole system from scratch. If you’d like anonymous and confidential assistance, feel free to email. No-one need know, and your audience will never again have to struggle through a talkbreak discussing “last night’s obscure documentary about Nutless Wonder Monkeys”.

#5) Where is your audience – and what are they doing?

Review your market’s regions and “Places of Listening”. You’ll find the creative possibilities astounding – for programming, news, music, imaging, integration/promotions, online, the works. Great ideas will flow just by putting yourself in your audience’s shoes, and literally “doing what they’re doing – where they’re doing it”.

There are far more great creative ideas for on-air, online, on-street to be generated with a review of market regions and “Places of Listening” than by analysing demographics. Demographics are dry. Where people are listening and what they’re doing while they’re listening is where the creative magic is.

And there’s great strategic advantage in it. Few of your competitors – if any – will give their market’s regions and their audience’s “Places of Listening” more than a token discussion in Strategy Meetings. Again, feel free to email if it'll help.

I won’t cover the Flood-related activity, as that will have already been locked in, group-wide, last week. Only reason for mentioning the floods at all is as a gentle prompt just in case someone somehow missed them – that does happen sometimes. Assumedly if they're completely isolated, perhaps stranded in the desert near my home town, to the South West of Wolf Creek.

Yes, the one the movie was named after. Seriously.

Scott Muller is Director of MBOS Consulting Group, a media management and consulting firm.

Click here to contact him.

* Legal disclaimer: the part about leading the Boy Scouts out of the desert is not intended to be taken literally.


Comment Form

Your email address will not be published.

Recent comments (0)
Post new comment


See all