It happens – radio stations change formats and suddenly popular personalities are out of a job. And Arbitron’s new PPM audience measurement technology has caused station owners to take a harsh look at what’s working and what’s not. But that’s not all bad for several displaced radio personalities who have found that podcasting is a great way to reconnect with their audience directly.
Early last year CBSRadio changed the format of LA’s KSLX to all hits, and radio personality Adam Carolla was out of a job. By March, he was producing shows for downloads and making the top ten on iTunes. And in September he announced a partnership with CBSRADIO that had them promoting the show, handling ad sales and letting Carolla program his own Web radio station.
In Chicago CBSRadio took Steve Dahl off the air, following some format shifts in that market. Not long later, he was producing daily podcasts, this time in partnership with CBSRadio from the get-go.
Now we have displaced DC dj Mike O’Meara, who lost his gig at CBSRADIO owned WJFK when they switched programming to Sports Talk, and is generating 15,000 downloads a day with his weekday show. (Which doesn’t involve CBSRADIO apparently)
It turns out, personality driven radio makes for perfect podcast content. Radio personalities have fans and followers with strong affinities for their shows, which means they’ll go to the extra effort to subscribe, download and listen loyally. Personality driven podcasts are a nice enhancement for radio broadcasters to offer their listeners. The nature of podcasting means those listeners are registered, so it’s easy to target ads to them, and they’re engaged and loyal, which makes them very appealing consumers for advertisers.
As radio stations begin to understand that their broadcast is simply one distribution channel for their content, more and more will create ways to extend relationships with long time radio personalities, even if they’re off the broadcast dial. Podcasts are a good place to start.
Um, Mr. O’Meara? CBSRADIO called while you were out…