It’s The Experience, Stupid.


Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign was about a lot of things. Political strategist James Carville knew that if they were to win they needed to focus on one central theme, thus coining the phrase “It’s the economy, stupid”.

Your radio station is about a lot of things.

Encouraging Music. Relatable personalities. Impactful promotions.

All good stuff. But if we are to boil it down to its core value to the listener: it’s the experience they have when they listen. The emotional payoff. We know this. But it’s easy to get busy and forget. Just think back to listening to the radio as a kid. How did it make you feel?

Now, what are you trying to make your listeners feel each time they turn on your station? Your imaging may say you’re “positive” but do I feel positive when listening? Are you willing to take a “risk” on a new song to create a serendipitous moment for your listeners? Do you give yourself permission to fail? Failure isn’t fatal but status quo is a death-sentence for radio in a world where music is ubiquitous.

Here’s a challenge: Try something on-air every day/week that you have to preface with “This might not work …” That’s where the magic happens. Reading the liners, backselling, proclaiming “Happy Tuesday” are all safe. And they’re boring. Never forget Valerie Geller’s “Rule of 3” for creating compelling content. 1. Tell The Truth. 2. Make It Matter. 3. Never Be Boring.

We haven’t all been replaced by algorithms yet. Give people an experience … a feeling. How are you making them feel?

My apologies for saying ‘stupid’ but, in my defense, it got you to read this.

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