There are several reasons why WEEI.com is legendary in my book, not the least of which is that it’s the home of the Red Sox. But the reason the rest of the Internet radio world should take note of Entercom’s Boston based sports talk station is its impressive digital platform. Recently I spoke to Tim Murphy, General Manager of WEEI.com. That’s right, I said GM of WEEI.com. Murphy admits he might be the only GM of a broadcast station’s online platform in the country. By hiring Murphy, who comes from Boston.com with a significant background in digital operations and sales, Entercom recognized the importance of digital, and the potential of WEEI.com.
WEEI has a total weekly aqh, according to Ando Media, of about 3800, which makes them one of the largest if not the largest single broadcast streaming station. Their website gets 500,000 unique visitors a month, which puts it in a cume range comparable to their broadcast station. They also see 450,000 podcasts streamed from their site or downloaded onto devices by listeners per month.
In addition to a General Manager, WEEI.com has about ten employees, including three full time writers/site editors who develop 40-50 new pieces of content daily. Reporters cover all the sports teams in Boston and write blogs and in-depth articles. Last year, they made a significant investment in the site when they cut a deal that brought Curt Shilling’s blog 38 Pitches exclusively to WEEI.com.
Murphy’s emphatic about the way campaigns are sold on the site. He says right now most of the campaigns are integrated to include audio, video gateways, display, and over the air inventory. The broadcast sales staff sells the inventory, with his guidance. The most critical thing, says Murphy, is to make sure that all the online audio creative is written specifically for the streaming listener, and ties in the banner on the player. He’s got some great ideas for making campaigns work by integrating the audio and the banner, telling the listener to enter their email address in the banner on the player, or enter their zipcode to get the location of the store nearest them.
Murphy, and Sandy Smallens, SVP of Digital for Entercom, are a couple of guys that really get it. The station’s digital platform is awesome – in Murphy’s own words “A quantum leap in the radio industry.” I agree…