Friday, May 02, 2014

Horizontals And Verticals

There are two ways the average radio listener makes use of the medium:
  1. How many times (and how long each occasion) did they listen to their favorite station today (vertical listening)?
  2. How many days a week did they do so at the same times (horizontal)?
If in your station imaging you only promote one of the two, you’re not maximizing your time spent exposed.

It's twice as much to sell, but today it's important to find ways to do it in half the time.

1 comment:

Mike O'Malley said...

Vertical and Horizontal Cuming are two great metrics to track in Nielsen.

When you're looking at Vertical, you're seeing what percent of your cume is sampling each daypart. Trend this over time and you can see growth or not (the drives are the most stable). A strong morning show should achieve roughly 60% cuming (55-59 is good, lower is not, 63% > or = is excellent). Afternoons should cume 65% or better. Obviously your mileage varies by the competitive environment and demos chased (for example, classic country might do well to have 50% cuming in mornings but 65% in middays).

Fixed appointment events play to this as do other promote-aheads.

Horizontal Cuming is about regularity of listening. Morning show promos about what specifically is coming up on tomorrow's show (new content not everyday benchmarks of generics) is a low-hanging-fruit example. However to me the greatest way to increase usage across days is on the talent. How will YOU make me want to come back tomorrow? What is the atmosphere that you create everyday that I have grown addicted to? Maybe it's a feature, but more likely it's an attitude and an atmosphere.

For afternoons, I think an atmosphere of "Friday afternoon at 5 happens here everyday beginning at 3."

To me, imaging helps generate/reinforce stationality. And stationality begets better Horizontal Cuming.