Category: Advice

Monday Memo: Round-Off Teases

| October 19, 2020

By Holland Cooke
Consultant

 

BLOCK ISLAND, RI — The quickest way to move the ratings needle? Not billboards, not TV spots, not direct mail.

This might sound like double-talk, but heaps of audience data demonstrate that the quickest way to move the ratings needle is to get listeners who listen to your station most (so-called “First Preference” or “P1” users) to listen even more. Especially in PPM markets, where the meter hears lots of “drive-by” listening.

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Monday Memo: Got Local News?
Guard It.

| October 12, 2020

By Holland Cooke
Consultant

 

BLOCK ISLAND, RI — Example: Actual copy, a story about a love triangle shooting:

  • Here’s what listeners heard – read this aloud: “The woman’s husband arrested the wounded man taken to the hospital.”
  • Here are the facts the writer obscured: Police arrested the woman’s husband, the accused shooter. The person he shot was hospitalized.
  • As-is, the ear was told something different when half-sentences ran-together. It sounded like the woman’s husband was a cop, who arrested someone who had been shot.

Verbs are our friends.

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Monday Memo: Reinvent Yourself

| October 5, 2020

By Holland Cooke
Consultant

 

BLOCK ISLAND, RI — Recently here, I reviewed WGN America’s “News Nation,” three live prime-time hours that test a novel concept: Simply tell me what’s happening, without telling me how to feel about it. ICYMI: read it here.

News Without Noise, Part 2

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Monday Memo: It’s Not Debatable

| September 28, 2020

By Holland Cooke
Consultant

 

BLOCK ISLAND, RI — First things first: If your station will air the first Biden-Trump debate tomorrow night, your promo should offer that “If you’ll be in the car tonight…” because anyone who’s near TV will watch, rather than listen, as candidates present themselves for side-by-side comparison.

And here’s the analogy no consultant can resist: Your station is on the debate stage, constantly. Your product stands side-by-side with other listening options that go way-beyond other AM/FM stations. As listeners judge you, how do you compare?

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Monday Memo: Attention Is Not for Sale

| September 21, 2020

By Holland Cooke
Consultant

 

BLOCK ISLAND, RI — What’s for sale? Clicks, on Facebook and Twitter. Messages on your phone and computer find you based on what you’ve told the world via your posts. Advertisers are also buying Google keywords. They’re telling (or, if they’re smart, asking) you JUST enough to tempt you to click for more of the pitch.

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Monday Memo: ‘Better Be Nice to the Boomers’

| September 14, 2020

By Holland Cooke
Consultant

 

BLOCK ISLAND, RI — Until those darn Millennials came along, Baby Boomers – now 56 to 74 years old – were the most-populous generation in history. My Dad marched home from World War II and he and Mom had seven of us. Unlike Millennials, Boomers have a lifelong AM/FM listening habit.

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Monday Memo: Noise Fatigue = News Renaissance?

| September 8, 2020

By Holland Cooke
Consultant

 

BLOCK ISLAND, RI — Have you seen WGN America’s primetime “News Nation?”  Have you seen promos for the 7:00 pm CNBC newscast Shepard Smith will anchor beginning September 30?  These shows are testing a novel concept: Just tell me what’s happening, instead of how-you-feel-about what’s happening.

“With balance, not biased.”

Though WGN’s slogan is eerily similar to the original FOX News proposition “Fair and Balanced,” the News Nation product actually delivers; unlike “We report, you decide” FOX imaging with which cagey Roger Ailes affirmed the like-minded.  News Nation is very down-the-middle, “News, Not Opinions,” with no arched brows, no mockery.

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Monday Memo: Announcers, You Have Been Replaced… For $47

| August 31, 2020

By Holland Cooke
Consultant

 

BLOCK ISLAND, RI — They’re testing prices. It was $37 when I purchased, and I would have paid ten times as much for what you will see-and-hear – and I won’t even TRY to describe – at Speechelo.com

Disclosure: I’m a buyer, not a seller. I am not representing this product, and won’t make a dime if you buy it.

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Monday Memo: Emulate Success

| August 17, 2020

By Holland Cooke
Consultant

 

BLOCK ISLAND, RI — Not an opinion: One voice sustains attention less than two.

  • Philadelphia radio maven Jerry Lee invested good research money learning that two-voice commercials produce better results that single-voice spots.
  • And music stations’ remaining local morning shows tend to be multi-voice.
  • If you’re a local host at a Rush Limbaugh station, and you reckon that his lengthy monologues entitle you to drone on, run the numbers and compare his Time Spent Listening to yours. Keep it moving.
  • Whether you’re an ask-the-expert show or a political talker, one-caller-after-another make you sound popular and authoritative, and certainly habit-forming.
  • Podcasters: Because simply acquiring your work asks so much of the listener, this matters most to you.

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