Tracy Johnson: personalities are difference-makers.

Staff Writer

Researcher Mark Kassof published a summary of findings from an excellent research project probing the importance of personalities on the radio.

The study confirms my conviction that personalities are difference-makers.

Tracy Johnson, the President of the Tracy Johnson Media Group joins us for some great insights into the power of personality.

47% of all respondents said they make it a lot better to listen to. Another 39% said a little better. That’s 86% in all that personalities make the radio better.


Kassof drilled deeper, though, probing what it is about the people on the radio that make it special. Here are the results (note that the total adds up to more than 100% because some gave multiple answers):

  1. Funny 24%
  2. Interesting/engaging 12%
  3. Informative (about music, events) 9%
  4. The music/songs they play 6%
  5. Have good/clear voices 4%
  6. Have/add fun 4%
  7. Have good topics/opinions 4%
  8. Have good personalities 3%
  9. Add energy/enthusiasm/excitement . 3%
  10. Make it more personal/relatable 3%
  11. Happy/cheerful/upbeat 2%
  12. Friendly/like a friend 2%


This is a great list. Make me laugh, relate to me and keep me updated!

Now, the qualifier, and this is critical: A large percentage of respondents put a gigantic “if” in their comments. Kassof summarizes:

What they’re saying is that personalities can make radio better if they’re funny, or interesting, etc. The implication is that they aren’t all or always positive.


Here are some of the verbatim comments:

If they are funny and you can relate to them, it makes me much more likely to listen.”
If they are interesting and have something interesting to talk about…”
If they do not spend too much time talking and just play more music.”
If they aren’t stupid, don’t talk a lot or act childish they make the station better.”
If they’re entertaining, interesting, or interactive it can make it a more enjoyable experience.”

In an era where managers are reducing talent budgets and programmers are PPM-ing  the personality off their stations (USA Survey methodology), talent is more important than ever.  Now is the time to invest in talent and develop the next generation of personalities.

Difference-making personalities are the one thing that sets you apart from all other forms of entertainment.

You can read the whole Mark Kassof & Co. article here


Tracy Johnson Media Group develops and execute strategies that engage audiences and increase ROI with world class solutions for radio stations of all sizes. We work with the world’s greatest stations and air talent, from stations in small, local communities to syndicated shows in hundreds of market. Our team of consultants, talent coaches and promotion specialists customize services to fit your needs, from one-time projects, ongoing consultations, in-market and online seminars, workshops and speaking engagements.

Get more information:
email: [email protected]



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