A&O has been very proud to work with Peak Broadcasting's WOW 104.3 in building the very first country-format listener driven radio station which embraced the concept of "you drive" more than a year ago, and it's gone very well as the Boise rating trends have shown.
(Thanks to the hard work and great creative content by some amazing people.)
A very small percentage of core listeners love the fact that they control the playlist, and that's nothing new. Just ask anyone who's ever answered a request line.
Maybe that's why Cumulus and Clear Channel are both buying companies which hope to give Pandora a run for the money.
A quick two points from history to put these developments in perspective.
1. All request shows and DJ's who played all their favorites on demand pre-dated music scheduling software, which introduced the concept of well-researched music, carefully-balanced and rotated for maximum cume and time spent listening. The latter smoked the former and still does.
2. "Radio" at its best is so much more than music.
"Entertaining, compelling people will also get more response on Facebook, or at a party, or sitting in the stands at a ball game. Do anything with Facebook that you like. It's fine, but in the long run, it just doesn't matter. The Facebook world may be larger than the pool of people who call, but it's still a minority, and there's no proof that it makes them listen more. The overwhelming majority of listeners don't call, don't go to a station's Facebook page, don't go to many (if any) of a station's events, and rarely, if ever, go to a station's website. Stations that try to be at every event, instead of picking the biggest parade and getting in front of it, always expend a lot of energy but still lose. Stations that will expend tons of energy trying to ignite Facebook response will have the same results. The plain truth is that most people listen to the radio for companionship, for information (Traffic, Weather), or to be entertained. That's never going to change. The cure for all of radio's woes--every single one of them--is to hire more entertaining people to be on the air." - Tommy Kramer
Yeah, "Radio" has what Pandora wants.
- A huge, loyal, responsive mass audience: (Radio Broadcasters Attract Another 2.1 Million Weekly Listeners According to Radar® 108)
- Profits. Growing profits.
Let's not get lost chasing after Pandora.