“Well, isn’t that special…could it be, Satan?”
The memorable catchphrases of the classic SNL “Church Lady” character played by Dana Carvey are so funny because we all know someone like that. We’ve all met some super-religious buzzkill that attributes every source of “fun” as coming from the Devil himself.
If you haven’t met someone like that, then maybe you’re like that.
Fortunately, Contemporary Christian radio, for the most part, isn’t super-religious sounding (anymore). We even have the occasional “family-friendly” fun.
But what if we just had fun and dropped the “family-friendly” part?
Comedian Jim Gaffigan-often described as “family friendly”-shared his feelings on the phrase in his book Dad is Fat:
“As a parent, I know ‘family-friendly’ is really just a synonym for ‘bad.’
Family-friendly restaurants serve horrible food. Family-friendly hotels have
the charm of a water park. Really, anything with the word ‘family’ before it is
What if our stations were the ones known for having fun?
[Disclaimer: This is not an appeal to tell jokes. There are professional comedians, such as Steve Harvey, with radio shows. If you are not a professional comedian, don’t try to be funny. But having fun is achievable for all who are willing to put in the effort and not take themselves too seriously.]
Maybe you’ve heard it said of Christian radio that “fun is not why people come here.”
What if it was?
Frankie Morea, VP of Programming for Positive Alternative Radio, argues it should be:
“Our radio stations are a trigger format for people who find themselves in
need of hope and encouragement in difficult times. We have done a great
job of helping people through loss and the various challenges of life in their
valley.Our challenge is to always be mindful of those on the mountain or
somewhere in between.
Being inspirational and caring is what we do. God touches hearts through
our music and content but let’s keep in mind a merry heart does good like
medicine. Having fun can be a beautifully biblical thing!”
What if you were the go-to station not just for spiritual encouragement, but also for when someone just wants to have fun? As argued previously in this space, everything on your station matters. It’s either engaging or disengaging.
Over 39 million Americans own a smart speaker (Amazon Echo or Google Home). It will be 100 Million within a matter of months, not years. There are approximately a billion ways to hear Christian music or get a “verse of the day” on a smart speaker. If you want your station to be a preferred destination in the voice-command world, a good strategy would be to optimize to make your radio station for fun. NOW.
This article was originally published on AllAccess.com.