Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Here's To The Survivors

Novels have been written about sinking ships and the ramifications of powerful Captains' fateful decisions on what to save and what to toss overboard.

The turbulent economic seas of the past two decades in the radio business are replete with stories of stations and companies which crashed after executives under horrific pressures made sad decisions about people (dead weight? powerful fuel? ballast?).

That's why yesterday's Access Atlanta tribute by writer Rodney Ho to an impressive list of that city's long-lasting voices who still remain on the air after a decade or more is essential reading.

Most radio personalities are really only known to the folks who use one station or format.

What's important to success is the depth of awareness and loyalty from that group of listeners.  Occasionally, there is a person on one station with an opportunity to really break out and totally impact the entire market.  That kind of person is rare these days, given the fact that most listeners use between three and seven radio stations.

Getting on that radar requires exceptional abilities as well as extremely broad appeal.
"I’ve been blessed to work with some very talented programmers through the years.  I always try to put the listener first and think like (what I believe) the audience is thinking.  I’m imagining I’m with the listener in his car and what would be informative and entertaining, and try to come up with ways to relate and interact with him without being annoying in our hellacious Atlanta traffic.  The listener is my ultimate boss, so if I’m not connecting with him I fail.  I believe consistency has been important to my success, as well. I show up for work every day and on-time, and I work hard.  That may sound silly, but you don’t realize how many people aren’t consistent. I also enjoy my co-workers. Then, of course, there are always the elements of luck and timing, and I believe I’ve had my share of those!"  -- Kaedy Kiely

Thanks to Ho for spotlighting Atlanta's survivors of 2013 - Kaedy, Cadillac Jack. Jenn Hobby. Capt. Herb Emory, Scott Slade, Clark Howard, Mark Arum, Kirk Mellish, John Kincade, Buck Belue, Chuck Oliver, Matt Chernoff, Christopher Rude, Dallas McCade, Kevin Avery, Taylor Scott, Parks Stamper, Art Terrell, Silas “SiMan” Alexander, Jordan Graye, Ryan Cameron, Greg Talmadge, Melissa Carter, Steve Goss, Lois Reitzes, The Regular Guys’ Larry Wachs and Eric Von Haessler, Axel Lowe, “Southside” Steve Rickman, Bert Weiss and Jeff Dauler, Rob Stadler and Mike Bell.

Every city has them, deserving more recognition for their daily toil than they receive.

This week at The Conclave in Minneapolis let's all toast as many of them as possible, paying close attention to the life lessons they have to offer.

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