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NOW POSTED: This Weekend’s Installment of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.” The latest installment of the one-hour weekend special, “The Michael Harrison Wrap,” that looks back each week at the hottest topics discussed in American talk media per the research of TALKERS, is now posted. This new episode titled, “Primary Directives,” looks back at this past week of 5/16-20. The program features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERS; Mandy Connell, talk show host, KOA, Denver; Brett Winterble, talk show host, WBT, Charlotte; Victoria Jones, executive director, DC Radio Company; Dom Giordano, talk show host, WPHT, Philadelphia; and Matthew B. Harrison, VP/associate publisher, TALKERS/media attorney. The show airs weekends on WONK-FM, Washington, DC; WTIC, Hartford; KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KDFD, Denver; KFNX, Phoenix; KTLK-FM, St. Louis; WPG, Atlantic City, NJ; SuperTalk 99.7 WTN, Nashville; KMZQ, Las Vegas; WTPL, Manchester, NH; WEMJ, Laconia, NH; WTSN, Dover-Portsmouth, NH; WVLY, Wheeling, WV; WTRW-FM, Scranton/Wilkes Barre, PA; WVOX, Westchester, NY; KBDT, Dallas; WGDJ, Albany, NY; WJFN-FM, Richmond, VA; WZFG, Fargo; KTGO, Tioga, ND; KWAM, Memphis; K-NEWS, San Luis Obispo; WGMD, Rehoboth Beach, DE; WCHM, Clarkesville, GA; WPHM, Port Huron, MI; KSYL, Alexandria, LA; KTOE, Mankato, MN; WCED, DuBois, PA; K-NEWS 101.3, Owensboro, KY; WWTK, Sebring, FL; WSAR-AM/FM, Fall River, MA; WIZM-AM/FM, La Crosse, WI; WMVA, Martinsville, VA; KQEN, Roseburg, OR; the Virginia Talk Radio Network; CRN Digital Talk Radio Network; Podcast Radio UK and many more. To listen to this week’s episode, please click here. To view the latest TALKERS topic research, please click here. “The Michael Harrison Wrap” is now available in syndication via Talk Media Network to stations across America on a market exclusive basis. For affiliation information, please click here or call 616-884-8616.
Round Four of April PPMs Released. The fourth of four rounds of ratings information from Nielsen Audio’s April PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including Austin, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Nashville, Providence, Norfolk, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Greensboro, Memphis, and Hartford. Nielsen’s April 2022 sweep covered March 31 – April 27. Today, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets. In Raleigh, iHeartMedia’s news/talk WTKK-FM grows by seven-tenths for a 7.4 share (weekly, 6+ AQH share) finish that pushes it up from #4 to the #3 rank, while Curtis Media Group’s crosstown news/talk WPTF tacks on one-tenth to finish with a 2.0 share and ranking #14. Emmis Communications’ news/talk WIBC-FM, Indianapolis loses half a share, finishing the survey with a 9.0 share and remains ranked #2. In Milwaukee, Bucks playoff hoops and Brewers baseball helps Good Karma Brands’ news/talk WTMJ leap from #3 to #1 after adding 1.7 shares for a 9.9 share finish. iHeartMedia’s crosstown news/talk WISN sheds eight-tenths to finish with a 7.5 share and falls from #2 to #4. Cumulus Media’s WWTN-FM, Nashville loses seven-tenths and its 6.1 share causes it to fall from #2 to #6. Cox Media Group’s WOKV-FM, Jacksonville continues its hold on the #1 rank after tacking on one-tenth to wrap the survey with a 10.6 share. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets (as well as the previous three groups) here.
Triton Digital Releases April 2022 U.S. Podcast Report. The April 2022 edition of Triton Digital’s ranking of the top 100 U.S. Podcasts (the report also includes the Top 20 U.S. Networks) based on Average Weekly Downloads is released and NPR’s “NPR News Now” remains in the #1 spot. Some of the other podcasts affiliated with radio-centric companies that made the April chart include Cumulus Podcast Network’s “The Ben Shapiro Show” at #3 and its “The Dan Bongino Show” at #8. Salem Podcast Network’s “The Charlie Kirk Show” remains ranked at #12. Three more Cumulus Podcast Network shows finished in the top 25, including “The Mark Levin Podcast” at #18, “The Matt Walsh Show” at #23, and “The Michael Knowles Show” at #24. The chart is comprised of networks and programs that opt in for measurement. You can see the complete chart here.
Public News/Talk WYPR, Baltimore Partners with The Baltimore Banner. Baltimore public radio organization Your Public Radio and The Baltimore Banner – a multi-platform news organization established by The Venetoulis Institute for Local Journalism – are beginning a joint operating agreement that will allow the nonprofit organizations to work collaboratively to deliver quality journalism across the state. WYPR “Your Public Radio” has three signals in the region – WYPR, Baltimore; WYPF, Frederick; and WYPO, Ocean City, Maryland. The two organizations say they will “work together to cover stories, special reports and develop joint programming to serve the needs of communities throughout Baltimore and around the state. This includes content sharing across platforms accessible to Baltimore Banner subscribers and the Your Public Radio audience and members. One of the first collaborations will be to cover the upcoming local elections.” Your Public Radio president LaFontaine E. Oliver says, “We are looking forward to the possibilities of this unique model of nonprofit news as we work to preserve and strengthen local journalism here in greater Baltimore. This partnership between Your Public Radio and The Baltimore Banner is an important step to bolster our local newsrooms in Maryland – with trusted, community reporting at the core of the agreement between the two organizations.”
TALKERS News Notes. Leadership from Hope Media Group and WAY Media announce the official close of their merger into a single media organization headquartered in Houston has taken place. The new company says, “This merger combines the rich heritage of two like-minded organizations, who together engage an audience of more than 4 million individuals worldwide with positive multimedia content over radio and online mediums.” President Joe Paulo comments, “We’re thrilled to officially join forces with Way Media to expand our combined impact. This merger is much more than a business matter. Aligning our efforts is a positive shift within Christian media to create and share uplifting content that encourages and inspires audiences across the country. We could not be more excited for this next chapter as our media brands continue to be a beacon of Hope for all.”…..The Radio Television Digital News Association is revealing winners of the local Edward R. Murrow Regional Awards for the numerous regions in the U.S. and iHeartMedia San Diego’s “Newsradio 600” KOGO, San Diego is honored with the award for a Newscast. A broadcast made by KOGO reporter Phil Farrar was singled out for the honor. “KOGO News with Phil Farrar” will now compete with fellow regional winners for the national award. The national award winners will be announced this summer and presented at the Edward R. Murrow National Awards Gala on October 10, 2022…..SiriusXM announces the launch of an all-new, original podcast “Basic!,” hosted by media veteran Doug Herzog and TV critic Jen Chaney, which explores the groundbreaking programming and glory days of cable television. The first three episodes of “Basic!” are now available on all major podcast platforms. Episode #1 features guest Jimmy Kimmel chatting with Herzog and Chaney about his breakthrough on cable television with Comedy Central’s “Win Ben Stein’s Money” and “The Man Show.” Amy Schumer joins in for episode #2 where she talks about creating and starring in her sketch comedy cable show, “Inside Amy Schumer,” and Fab Five Freddy is the guest for episode #3 where he shares stories about the creation of MTV’s groundbreaking hip-hop show, “Yo! MTV Raps.”
Partisan Politics and Elections Top News/Talk Story for Week of May 16-20. The partisan politics surrounding the primary elections leading up to November’s midterms was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was the economy – including high gas & food prices, the selloff on Wall Street, and concerns about a recession, tied with the shortage of baby formula. At #3 this week was the Russia-Ukraine war and the related U.S. foreign affairs. The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine. It is published every Friday at Talkers.com. See this week’s complete chart here.
FOX News Media Seeks Freelance Radio Anchor. This is a New York or Washington, DC-based position. FOX News is looking for a freelance radio anchor to join the FOX News Audio family as on-air talent for FOX News Radio Network/FOX News Headlines 24/7 Sirius XM Channel 115. As the freelance radio anchor, you will work under tight deadlines and deliver top-notch newscasts. You have a passion for breaking news and the flexibility to work on a day’s notice. Find out more and apply here.
FOX News Media Has Opportunity for Freelance Producer/Editor. This New York-based position is a freelance producer/news editor role in which you will supervise the staff for network radio news operations (terrestrial and FOX News Headlines 24/7 – Channel 115 on SiriusXM Radio). As the freelance producer/news editor you are our editorial leader, working with news anchors to craft the content and structure of a 24/7 news operation. This is fast-moving news environment! Your ability to thrive in a fast-paced, deadline-driven newsroom allows you to deliver top-quality segments/newscasts. You excel at multi-tasking and pay close attention to details. Your writing and editing skills are excellent and your editorial judgment is first-rate. Find out more and apply here.
Podcast Producer Position Open at FOX News Media. FOX News Audio is looking for a producer for The Will Cain Podcast to be part of the fast-paced and growing FOX News Podcast Network. The producer for The Will Cain Podcast will develop ideas, pitch stories, and work with FOX News Channel talent in crafting daily and weekly podcasts. The producer will also direct bookings, edit shows, and work with production teams to create high-quality content every day. In addition to their production duties, they will also lead creative on social media posts and website write-ups to promote the product. This is a New York, Washington, or Nashville-based position. Find out more and apply here.
Monday Memo: NAB, Long Time No See. For the first time in three years there’s a NAB Show in Las Vegas, and in a Sunday ceremony Jim Bohannon was inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame. Covering the convention for TALKERS, Holland Cooke says, “There are still some masks, and – after three years – lots of hugs.” Also, in today’s column, HC’s notes from a conference session that asked, “What Business Are You In?” Read it here.
Pending Business: Raising Your Rates? Radio sales pro Steve Lapa writes in today’s column about the soaring cost of, well, just about everything and how that’s probably what forced a station he deals with to raise its rates by 250%! If you’re a seller who has to break the rising rates to your clients, how do you do it gently? He offers some thoughts on that. Read it here.
Round Four of March PPMs Released. The fourth of four rounds of ratings information from Nielsen Audio’s March PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: Austin, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Nashville, Providence, Norfolk, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Greensboro, Memphis, and Hartford. Nielsen’s March 2022 sweep covered March 3 – March 30. Today, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets. Emmis Communications’ news/talk WIBC-FM, Indianapolis sheds two-tenths to finish the survey with a 9.5 share (6+, weekly AQH share) but remains locked in the #2 rank. In Milwaukee, the battle between iHeartMedia’s news/talk WISN and Good Karma Brands’ news/talk WTMJ tightens. WISN lost 1.2 shares to finish with an 8.3 share good for the #2 rank, while WTMJ adds six-tenths for an 8.2 share finish that moves it into the #3 rank. Cumulus Media’s news/talk WWTN-FM, Nashville dips four-tenths to wrap the survey with a 6.8 share that keeps it ranked #2, while iHeartMedia’s crosstown news/talk WLAC-AM slides two-tenths to a 3.1 share and falls back to the #12 rank. In Jacksonville, Cox Media Group’s news/talk WOKV-FM rises three-tenths to a 10.5 share and remains #1 in the market. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets (as well as the first three groups) here.
Beasley Promotes Tina Murley to Chief Revenue Officer. Media sales pro Tina Murley is promoted to chief revenue officer for Beasley Media Group. Murley most recently served as the vice president of sales at the company since December 2020 and prior to that was director of sales at the company’s cluster for six years. In her new role, she will be responsible for overseeing all revenue on behalf of the company. Beasley CEO Caroline Beasley states, “It is an absolute privilege to promote Tina to the position of chief revenue officer at Beasley Media Group. She has done a phenomenal job leading our company’s sales efforts over the past two years. Her ‘can do’ spirit and ability to lead our sales teams has been truly exceptional. I look forward to her continuing to drive our revenue growth across all the company’s platforms well into the future.” Murley comments, “I want to thank Caroline, Bruce, Brian, Brad and the entire Beasley family for entrusting me to lead the sales charge for Beasley Media Group. When I joined the company, I had the honor of meeting George Beasley and knew instantly that I wanted to play a larger role in his company. What I didn’t know is that I would be joining a collaborative and dedicated sales force that leads with ideas and is truly vested in client success. As CRO, I look forward to empowering our best-in-class team to succeed, grow revenue, and deliver results for our valued clients and shareholders.”
The Economy, Russia-Ukraine War, January 6, COVID-19, DeSantis vs Disney, Midterms/Trump & the GOP, Musk vs Twitter, and France Re-Elects Macron Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. Friday’s Wall Street sell-off, the high price of gasoline & food, and concerns about a recession; the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine and Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s trip to Ukraine; the recording of Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy saying Donald Trump should resign the presidency following the January Capitol attack; the controversy over mask mandates, the watch for BA.2 variant outbreaks, and the lockdowns in China; Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ move to punish Disney by taking away its special tax status; the battle for control of congress in the November midterm elections and Donald Trump’s influence over the GOP; Elon Musk’s negotiations with Twitter over his go-private bid; and Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen to remain president of France were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
NOW POSTED: This Weekend’s Installment of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.” The latest installment of the one-hour weekend special, “The Michael Harrison Wrap,” that looks back each week at the hottest topics discussed in American talk media per the research of TALKERS, is now posted. This new episode titled, “Midnight in Moscow,” looks back at this past week of 3/21 to 3/25. The program features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERS; Jennifer Horn, talk show host, KRLA (AM 860 The Answer), Los Angeles; Martha Zoller, talk show host, WDUN, Gainesville, GA; Victoria Jones, executive director, DC Radio Company; and Ivan Pentchoukov, national editor, The Epoch Times. The show airs weekends on WONK-FM, Washington, DC; WTIC, Hartford; KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KDFD, Denver; KFNX, Phoenix; KTLK-FM, St. Louis; WPG, Atlantic City, NJ; SuperTalk 99.7 WTN, Nashville; KMZQ, Las Vegas; WTPL, Manchester, NH; WEMJ, Laconia, NH; WTSN, Dover-Portsmouth, NH; WVLY, Wheeling, WV; WTRW-FM, Scranton/Wilkes Barre, PA; WVOX, Westchester, NY; KBDT, Dallas; KQSP, Minneapolis; WGDJ, Albany, NY; WJFN-FM, Richmond, VA; WZFG, Fargo; KTGO, Tioga, ND; KWAM, Memphis; K-NEWS, San Luis Obispo; WGMD, Rehoboth Beach, DE; WCHM, Clarkesville, GA; WPHM, Port Huron, MI; KSYL, Alexandria, LA; KTOE, Mankato, MN; WCED, DuBois, PA; K-NEWS 101.3, Owensboro, KY; WWTK, Sebring, FL; WSAR-AM/FM, Fall River, MA; WIZM-AM/FM, La Crosse, WI; WMVA, Martinsville, VA; KQEN, Roseburg, OR; the Virginia Talk Radio Network; CRN Digital Talk Radio Network; Podcast Radio UK and many more. To listen to this week’s episode, please click here. To view the latest TALKERS topic research, please click here. “The Michael Harrison Wrap” is now available in syndication via Talk Media Network to stations across America on a market exclusive basis. For affiliation information, please click here or call 616-884-8616.
Townsquare Media to Acquire Cherry Creek Broadcasting for $18.75 Million. This deal for Townsquare Media, Inc. to acquire Cherry Creek Broadcasting LLC for $18.75 million will add assets including 35 radio stations in nine markets to Townsquare’s portfolio, which will include 356 stations in 74 markets when the deal is closed sometime in the third quarter of this year. To accomplish the transaction, and due to FCC ownership regulations, Townsquare will divest six radio stations in Missoula, Montana, to Anderson Broadcasting, Legacy Broadcasting (a non-profit organization), and Missoula Community Radio (also a non-profit organization), and place two radio stations in Tri-Cities, Washington in a divestiture trust. Townsquare says this transaction solidifies its position as the only local media and digital marketing solutions company of scale focused principally on markets outside of the top 50 in the United States, a vital differentiator for the company. Company CEO Bill Wilson comments, “We are very excited to announce the acquisition of Cherry Creek’s market leading local media brands. The acquisition includes many local heritage brands with strong competitive positions, meaningful audience share, and very talented local teams. This represents an excellent opportunity to deploy our Digital First Local Media strategy across a broader footprint, bringing our national scale, strong digital platform, and resources to the local communities and local businesses in these markets, building upon the strong relationships these local teams have already built with their communities. We look forward to accelerating the digital growth in these markets as we implement our flywheel of powerful and effective marketing and advertising (digital and radio) solutions and technology platforms, in combination with our highly relevant, localized content on air and online. We believe this acquisition furthers our goal of being the #1 Digital First Local Media Company in markets outside of the top 50 in the United States.” This transaction is being funded with cash on hand and Townsquare CFO Stuart Rosenstein states, “This acquisition represents a compelling use of capital that aligns with our priorities of investing in our local business through both organic investments and prudent acquisitions that support our revenue and profit growth. This acquisition is net leverage neutral and due to the strong cash generation of our business and the acquired assets, will not impact our ability to reach our goal of 4x net leverage by year end.” The Cherry Creek LLC stations in this deal are located in the following markets: Butte, Great Falls, and Missoula, Montana; Montrose, Colorado; Sierra Vista, Arizona; St. George-Cedar City, Utah; Tri-Cities and Wenatchee, Washington; and Williston, North Dakota.
Round Four of February PPM Ratings Released. The fourth of four rounds of ratings data from Nielsen Audio’s February 2022 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: Austin, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Nashville, Providence, Norfolk, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Greensboro, Memphis, and Hartford. Nielsen’s February 2022 sweep covered February 3 – March 2. Today, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets. In Raleigh, iHeartMedia’s news/talk WTKK-FM rises two-tenths for a 7.6 share (weekly, 6+ AQH share) finish and remains #3 in the market while Curtis Media Group’s crosstown news/talk WPTF drops 1.3 shares for a 2.0 share finish and falls back to the #13 rank. Emmis Communications’ news/talk WIBC, Indianapolis sheds nine-tenths for a 9.7 share finish but remains ranked #2 in the market. In Milwaukee, iHeartMedia’s news/talk WISN falls from #1 to #2 after dipping two-tenths for a 9.5 share finish, while Good Karma Brands’ news/talk WTMJ adds four-tenths to wrap the survey with a 7.6 share that keeps it in the #4 rank. Cox Media Group’s news/talk WOKV-FM, Jacksonville posts a 10.6 share after rising six-tenths and that is good for the #1 rank in the market. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaways for this group of markets (as well as the previous three groups) here.
Rhode Island Talk Radio Host John DePetro Continues Reporting from Ukraine. WNRI, Woonsocket, Rhode Island talk radio host John DePetro is pictured above (right) interviewing displaced Ukrainian Andre (left) who is serving as a volunteer in Western Ukraine helping his fellow citizens who’ve lost their homes. DePetro says that the situation in his Western Ukrainian location is “very tense.” So much so that for security reasons, journalists now face being incarcerated for taking any type of military photo or photo showing a specific location. See his video report here.
Audacy’s WJZ-FM, Baltimore Debuts ‘Baltimore Baseball Tonight’ Program. The new “Baltimore Baseball Tonight” program on Audacy’s WJZ-FM, Baltimore “105.7 The Fan” will be hosted by midday personality Bob Haynie, Orioles legends Bill Ripken and Mike Bordick, former Orioles vice president of baseball operations Jim Duquette, and 105.7 The Fan’s Orioles beat reporter Cordell Woodland. Beginning Opening Day on April 7, the show will air at 6:00 pm ET on game nights and broadcast live from Pickles Pub across the street from the stadium when the team is home. When the team is on the road, the show will be live from various locations, including the 105.7 The Fan studios. Audacy Baltimore SVP and market manager Tracy Brandys says, “‘Baltimore Baseball Tonight’ will give fans an in-depth preview of the Baltimore professional baseball team throughout the season and bring them closer to the game than ever before. We’re also extremely excited to get back out with the fans at Pickles Pub and share our collective passion for the team alongside Bob, Bill, Mike, Jim and Cordell – five individuals who have decades of insight on the team.”
TALKERS News Notes. According to data from Comscore, FOX News Digital finished February as the top-performing news brand in the competitive set in both multiplatform views and multiplatform minutes. FOX News Digital says it delivered 2.9 billion multiplatform minutes and over 1.4 billion multiplatform views, while posting increases in multiplatform unique visitors and multiplatform minutes versus the prior month. February also marked the 12th straight month that FOX News outpaced every news organization in the competitive set in multiplatform minutes. While FOX News Digital topped primary competitor CNN.com in multiplatform total views and multiplatform total minutes, CNN.com beat FOX News Digital in multiplatform unique visitors by a margin of almost two to one…..As reported in Pittsburgh’s TribLive, sports radio pro Adam Crowley leaves iHeartMedia’s sports talk WBGG-AM “ESPN Pittsburgh” to join Audacy’s crosstown sports talk KDKA-FM “93.7 The Fan” for weekend, fill-in, and producer duties…..Actor, director and educator LeVar Burton will receive the first-ever Insight Award from the Library of American Broadcasting Foundation in recognition of his extraordinary contributions to broadcasting, history and American culture during the NAB Show Welcome on Monday, April 25 in Las Vegas. The Insight Award recognizes an individual or organization for an outstanding artistic or journalistic work or body of work that enhances the public’s understanding of the role, operation, history or impact of media in our society. Burton is known for his roles as Kunta Kinte in the acclaimed television mini-series “Roots” and as Lt. Commander Geordi La Forge in “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” A lifelong children’s literacy advocate, Burton was host and executive producer of “Reading Rainbow,” one of the longest-running children’s television shows in history, during its 26-year run from 1983 to 2009. The show received more than 25 Emmy Awards, including 10 for Outstanding Children’s Series, and was honored with a prestigious George Foster Peabody Award in 1992…..Host David Marzetti’s weekend golf program, “The Shagbag Radio Show,” is celebrating its 20thanniversary on April 2. The program is heard on iHeartMedia’s KION-AM, Salinas, California each Saturday. Marzetti, who broadcasts the program remotely from the Del Monte Golf Course in Monterey, says he has never missed a live show in its 20 years on air – even during the pandemic shutdown – and has featured more than 4,000 guests on over 1,000 shows in its 20-year run.
Russia-Ukraine War Top News/Talk Story for Week of March 21-25. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the global effects of the conflict made it the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was President Joe Biden’s leading a NATO summit addressing the Ukraine invasion, followed at #3 by U.S. relations with Russia and China and tied with North Korea’s intercontinental ballistic missile test. The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine. It is published every Friday at Talkers.com. See this week’s complete chart here.
Westwood One Seeks Part-Time Producer. This is a Washington, DC-based position for a part-time producer to support the “Jim Bohannon Show,” “America in the Morning” and “First Light.” The producer performs all the functions of the producer for vacation relief and other times and will assist with the production of the programs, including news assignments, call screening, podcast and archive uploading, and other responsibilities as needed. The ideal candidate should have a strong knowledge of news events and passion for radio. They must be able to multitask and handle a fast-paced working environment, be detail-oriented, prompt and reliable, thrive on working as part of a team and respond well to direction. Must possess excellent writing and storytelling skills. Get more information and apply here.
Monday Memo: Read Me, Please! “Few opportunities to engage are more powerful than the ongoing email conversation you have with listeners.” Consultant Holland Cooke calls it “a relationship that Pandora and Spotify and your robotic AM/FM competitors can’t emulate.” In this week’s column, HC shares tips for the most important words of your email: its subject line. Read about it here.
Pending Business: Sell Carefully. Radio sales pro Steve Lapa says the war in the Ukraine has the potential to bring more information and opinion-hungry listeners to your news/talk station and provides a sales opportunity. “The loyal audience base your station has worked hard to develop will lock in regularly for information updates and the clarity your air talent can bring to a complex and intimidating situation that could affect everything from the price of gas at the local pump to a roller coaster ride in their stock portfolio.” He offers six tips for selling during this historic news storm. Read more here.
KNBR-AM/FM, San Francisco Promotes Adam Copeland to Afternoons. Sports talk radio pro Adam Copeland is promoted to co-host of the afternoon drive with longtime host Tom Tolbert on Cumulus Media’s KNBR-AM/FM, San Francisco. This comes after Cumulus parts ways with Tolbert’s former co-hosts Larry Krueger and Rod Brooks. Tolbert tweeted last week about their departure, saying, “Rod and Larry are no longer on the show. It sucks. I’m always saddened when something doesn’t work. I love both of those guys. I consider them friends. I can’t tell you why some things work and some don’t work. It’s a bummer. It stinks.” The new “Tolbert and Copes” show airs from 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Copeland joined KNBR as an intern in 2009 and was hired in 2016 as a board operator. He eventually became the producer of “KNBR Tonight with Ryan Covay.” In 2018, after time as a fill-in host on the station, Copeland was named host of his own talk show, “The Lead Off Spot with Adam Copeland,” airing weekday mornings from 5:00 am-6:00 am. He also served as a producer of the “Murph and Mac” morning program. Copeland says, “Having the opportunity to host ‘The Leadoff Spot’ and hang with Murph and Mac for the past four years has been a dream come true since I was 16 years old, and I’m forever indebted to all the loyal listeners, callers, and guests who made the show as fun and engaging as it was. It’s been the honor of my life. I look forward to bringing that same energy and enthusiasm to afternoon drive with the legendary Tom Tolbert. I know I have big shoes to fill, and I hope to make my fellow Bay Area sports fans proud. Onward and upward.”
Round Four of January PPM Survey Released. The fourth of four rounds of ratings information from Nielsen Audio’s January 2022 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: Austin, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Nashville, Providence, Norfolk, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Greensboro, Memphis, and Hartford. Nielsen’s January 2022 sweep covered January 6 – February 2. Today, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways for this group of markets. In the Raleigh market, iHeartMedia’s news/talk WTKK-FM jumps 1.1 shares for a 7.4 share (weekly, 6+ AQH share) finish and the #3 rank in the market, while Curtis Media Group’s crosstown news/talk WPTF tacks on nine-tenths for a 3.3 share finish good for the #11 rank. Emmis Communications’ news/talk WIBC-FM, Indianapolis recaptures 1.8 shares to wrap the survey with a 10.6 share and climbs to the #2 rank. In Milwaukee, iHeartMedia’s news/talk WISN-AM leaps to #1 after adding nine-tenths for a 9.7 share finish, while Good Karma Brands’ crosstown news/talk WTMJ-AM rises half a share for a 7.2 share finish good for the #4 rank. Cumulus Media’s news/talk WWTN-FM, Nashville tacks on eight-tenths to put up a 6.9 share that gives it the #2 rank in the market. Cox Media Group’s WOKV-FM, Jacksonville is back at #1 after shooting up 2.6 shares for a 9.6 share finish. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaways for this group of markets (as well as the first three rounds) here.
Nielsen Holdings Reports 2021 Q4 Revenue Up 2.5%; Full Year Revenue Rises 4.1%. Ratings giant Nielsen Holdings plc reports its financial data from the fourth quarter of 2021 and for the full year, revealing Q4 revenue was $894 million, an increase of 2.5% over the same period in 2020. Revenue of the whole of 2021 was $3.5 billion, a year-over-year increase of 4.1%. For the full year of 2021, Nielsen reports net income from continuing operations attributable to Nielsen shareholders was $551 million, compared to $191 million in 2020. Nielsen CEO David Kenny says, “We delivered strong results in 2021. We successfully sold Nielsen Global Connect, hit significant product milestones, and exceeded all of our original 2021 guidance metrics despite facing some unanticipated challenges. We are strongly positioned within the media ecosystem, with growing relevance as audiences shift to streaming, and we are delivering value to clients across our three essential solutions. We made measurable progress toward becoming a digital-first company, and our strategy aligns with where growth in the industry is coming from. We are piloting the first iteration of Nielsen ONE, which we launched in January, with a representative group of clients across media buyers and sellers and feedback has been positive. We also made progress on strengthening our balance sheet, reducing our net debt leverage by over half a turn in 2021. We now have the flexibility to return more capital to shareholders while continuing to invest in organic growth initiatives and pursue strategic, tuck-in M&A. Our $1 billion share repurchase authorization reflects our board’s confidence in both our short and long-term growth prospects and enables us to deliver value to our shareholders.” The company reports its financial position, stating, “As of December 31, 2021, the company had cash and cash equivalents of $380 million and gross debt of $5.626 billion, resulting in net debt of $5.246 billion.”
Russian Ukraine Invasion, COVID-19, The Economy/Financial Markets, CPAC 2022/Trump & the GOP, William Barr Book, State of the Union, and SAG Awards Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The Russian invasion of the Ukraine and the domestic and global responses to Vladimir Putin’s gambit; the falling rate of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., the relaxation of mask mandates, and the U.S. trucker convoys destined for Washington, DC; the state of the U.S. economy as the Ukraine invasion affects global markets, the ongoing inflation affecting consumer retail prices, and the financial markets activities; the weekend’s CPAC 2022 conference and Donald Trump’s influence over the GOP; former Attorney General William Barr’s new memoir containing criticism of Donald Trump is teased; anticipation of Tuesday’s State of the Union Address; and Sunday’s Screen Actors Guild 2022 awards ceremony were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
Monday Memo: Talk Radio 101 – LISTEN. “Streaming has music radio on its heels, because,” in consultant Holland Cooke’s view, “The Sentence Never Spoken is ‘Alexa, please play six commercials.’” Yet Cooke warns that “talkers should avoid taking false comfort that we’re less vulnerable to digital competitors, because people are using social media to talk to each other without us.” In this week’s column, HC details techniques to engage callers. Read it here.
Pending Business: It’s a Matter of Trust. Radio sales pro Steve Lapa says that it’s not unusual for news/talk radio sellers to unwittingly overlook the importance of the trust and credibility that their station’s hosts have engendered with their listeners. Too often, this important quality that’s not easy to match is left out of proposals for one reason or another. Read his column here.
Adriana Rizzo Named SVP of Consumer Marketing for Audacy. Marketing pro Adriana Rizzo joins Audacy as SVP of consumer marketing, effective January 31. In this role, Rizzo will lead the company’s audience growth initiatives across brand strategy, creative, messaging, media planning and attribution, while also managing the company’s Alchemy function, focused on the strategic integration of exclusive content and programming to Audacy’s over 200 million listeners. Audacy chief marketing officer Paul Suchman says, “We’re thrilled to have Adriana join our growing team. Her hire underscores our commitment to world-class marketing and our vision to become the audio platform of choice for consumers. The timing of Adriana’s hire is well aligned with our deep investments in technology and our future-proofed digital platform. Adriana will be a key partner to our business lines and to our marketing leads across broadcast, digital, sports betting and podcasting.” Rizzo was most recently with Discovery and launched streaming service Discovery+. She’s also served with ESPN. She comments, “I’m very excited to be joining Audacy at such an important and strategic time for the company and the industry. I look forward to working closely with this talented team and helping Audacy achieve new heights.”
After YouTube Snub, Heidi Harris Launches Vimeo Show. Twenty-four-year veteran Las Vegas-based radio talk show host Heidi Harris, currently heard at “97.1 FM Talk St. Louis” (KFTK-FM), is another conservative commentator recently banned from YouTube because of political content that the mega-platform says doesn’t meet its standards. In response, she has launched a new channel on Vimeo which will feature her daily “Headlines with Heidi” program. TALKERS founder Michael Harrison served as her first guest. Harris and Harrison discussed the current Big Tech censorship controversy as well as a number of “behind-the-scenes” talk media issues. To see the program, please click here.
2022 iHeartRadio Podcast Awards Take Place Virtually on Thursday. A number of celebrities will make guest appearances on this Thursday’s 2022 iHeartRadio Podcast Awards. The program was originally to take place live at the iHeartRadio Theater in Los Angeles but will now happen virtually at 9:00 pm ET on February 3 streaming on iHeartRadio’s YouTube channel and Facebook page as well as broadcast across select iHeartMedia radio stations nationwide. iHeartMedia says stars appearing include: Jason Bateman, Sean Hayes and Will Arnett, Martha Stewart, Matt Rogers and Bowen Yang, Paris Hilton, Shonda Rhimes, Will Ferrell, Wilmer Valderrama, and many more. While winners from most categories will be decided by a panel of industry leaders and creatives, the Podcast of the Year award is decided by social voting on Twitter. The nominees for Podcast of the Year are: “Code Switch,” “Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend,” “Crime Junkie,” “Louder Than a Riot,” “Office Ladies,” “SmartLess,” “Stuff You Should Know,” “The Daily,” “The Midnight Miracle” and “You’re Wrong About.”
Round Four of Holiday PPM Ratings Released. The fourth and final round of ratings data from Nielsen Audio’s Holiday PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: Austin, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Nashville, Providence, Norfolk, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Greensboro, Memphis, and Hartford. Nielsen’s Holiday 2021 sweep covered December 9 – January 5. Today, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets. Due to holiday listening habits influenced by Christmas music, spoken-word stations often lose share during this period, but not all stations saw losses this time around. In Indianapolis, Emmis Communications’ news/talk WIBC-FM adds seven-tenths for an 8.8 share (weekly, 6+ AQH share) but remains ranked #3 in the market. Cumulus Media’s WWTN-FM, Nashville “SuperTalk 99.7” is up eight-tenths for a 6.1 share finish and climbs from the #8 rank to #3. In Providence, Cumulus Media news/talk WPRO-AM/WEAN-FM rises nine-tenths to a 6.7 share but is still ranked #5 in the market. iHeartMedia’s WJNO, West Palm Beach adds a half share for a 2.3 share finish good for the #11 rank. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets (as well as the first three rounds) here.
Ukraine Tensions/Sanctions, COVID-19, U.S.-China Relations/Olympics, Midterm Elections/Trump & the GOP, Spotify’s COVID Issue, Supreme Court Opening, North Korea Missile Test, and NFL Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories over the Weekend. Russia’s military build-up at the Ukraine border and the West’s threatened sanctions if Russia invades; the rate of COVID-19 cases in the U.S. and abroad, and mask & vaccine mandates; the Biden Administration’s relations with China and the Beijing Winter Olympics; the battle for control of Congress in the November midterm elections and Donald Trump’s influence on the GOP; Spotify deals with artists pulling their music in response to what they term medical misinformation being spread on the “Joe Rogan Experience”; the controversy over President Joe Biden’s promise to nominate a Black woman to fill retiring Justice Stephen Breyer’s Supreme Court seat; North Korea tests a new missile causing concern over its military ambitions; and the Cincinnati Bengals will face the Los Angeles Rams in the Super Bowl after Sunday’s games were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.