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The Power of (a) Personality

August 27, 2015

On November 1, 2013 at 9:30am, radio listening habits were drastically altered. Having just wrapped things up with our October PPM clients, I tuned in to “Mike and Mike in the Morning” on ESPN radio. As I passively listened to the show, a specific topic caught my interest. So, I decided to write a joke concerning the topic. Minutes later, Mike Greenberg read my comment on air and the studio broke out in laughter.

Does anyone else care about this? Probably not. Heck, I’m sure the show hosts couldn’t remember that comment if they tried. But for 30 seconds, I was having a conversation with one of the best sports radio hosts in the industry. Greeny laughed at MY joke. We connected in a way that no other medium allows. On that day, Mike and Mike converted me into a P1 listener.

Why is this important? Favorite radio personalities can have a massive impact on listening habits. According to a study conducted by the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, 79% of all Adults listen to a station longer because their favorite personality is on the air. Plus, nearly three‑quarters (72%) of all Adults who have a favorite personality talk with their friends about certain content or the personality themselves. Simply by being someone’s “favorite,” a personality can positively influence the ratings and, ultimately, ROI for advertisers.

Here’s the thing. Creating these unique connections with listeners doesn’t happen by mistake. It takes effort. Personalities need to take genuine interest in their audience. What do they like to do? How do they feel about certain topics? What types of jobs do they have? Plus, personalities need to be where their listeners are. If your audience uses Twitter and you don’t have an active presence, you’re missing out. Simply retweeting a fan’s post or thanking someone for kind words can carry you a long way. A personality that is focused on building a connection with its audience will keep them coming back for more, and they just might find a P3 or P4 that can be converted through their efforts.

The connection is completely driven by emotion and lacks logic. And that’s exactly what makes radio awesome.

-Tyler Plahanski, Sales & Marketing Associate