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August 21, 2019 10:56 am  #1


New Format Hopes To Reach The Audience Radio Ignores

I’m not sure if what this guy is suggesting will work, but I do think it’s worth a try.
 
His name is John Sebastian and as the linked article points out, he’s not the guy from the Lovin’ Spoonful. Instead, he's a veteran programmer who boasts stations like KHJ on his resume. He suggests radio has long ignored the aging Baby Boomer population and wonders why the medium has deserted the very people who are so loyal to it.
 
He also notes they have the most disposable income and are among those most likely to listen. And he wonders why everyone chases an increasingly younger demo – many of whom don’t own a radio, have no idea how they work and never listen even if they do.
 
His solution – and Dale Patterson, it sounds like he stole this from you – is a format aimed at over 50s called “The WOW Factor.” It’s explained in the article, but there are a lot of surprises in it – including the elimination of staples like traffic and weather, which he says are readily available over smartphones.

And that's not all.

"Special features of The Wow Factor include a wide variety of music boomers literally grew up with. Top-40, AOR, classic rock, smooth jazz and country are all part of the mix. “We are testing the entire wide-ranging library right now,” Sebastian says, calling the mix “eclectic … never before heard on radio.”
 
It’s an interesting idea and he’s hoping he can convince someone to try it out.
 
Anyone here think it would work? And would you listen to it? I, for one, would certainly be willing to give it a try.
 
Radio programmers take note: The Wow Factor aims to make money and attract listeners

 

August 21, 2019 11:04 am  #2


Re: New Format Hopes To Reach The Audience Radio Ignores

RadioActive wrote:

...He suggests radio has long ignored the aging Baby Boomer population...

Isn't that what angry, dash-pounder talk radio is all about?
 

Last edited by Dial Twister (August 21, 2019 11:18 am)

 

August 21, 2019 11:15 am  #3


Re: New Format Hopes To Reach The Audience Radio Ignores

I agree about ditching traffic and weather...a music station will never be as up to date as a new station

 

August 21, 2019 12:46 pm  #4


Re: New Format Hopes To Reach The Audience Radio Ignores

I think the format has merit and would be successful until the baby boomer generation is dead and buried. The "Beautiful Music"  format ruled FM through the 60's and 70's until my parent's generation passed away. I think CKOT in Tillsonburg was the last of the so-called Elevator Music stations in Southern Ontario to update their format.

 

August 21, 2019 9:29 pm  #5


Re: New Format Hopes To Reach The Audience Radio Ignores

And CKOT's ratings plummeted. From spring 2018 to spring 2019 their share was cut in half, their listeners dropped from 56,000 to 34,000 and their rank went from tied for 1st to 8th. Rogers "updated" CKOT after acquiring ownership, including dumping their longtime morning show for one "more relevant". Nice move by Rogers.

 

August 21, 2019 10:29 pm  #6


Re: New Format Hopes To Reach The Audience Radio Ignores

CHAY 93.1 "Chay" was a cottage country and rural powerhouse back in the day with EZL...

 

August 22, 2019 3:22 am  #7


Re: New Format Hopes To Reach The Audience Radio Ignores

I always remember driving up north on Hwy 400 and I think around the Holland Marsh there was a giant billboard proudly proclaiming " CHAY FM 93.1 For The Next 300 Kilometers" They were probably the only FM station in cottage country at that time. Rock 95 hadn't arrived yet. CKBB was still on 950 and CFOR on 1570. Thankfully, my parents only had AM in the family automobile then.

 

August 24, 2019 8:29 pm  #8


Re: New Format Hopes To Reach The Audience Radio Ignores

Storm wrote:

And CKOT's ratings plummeted. From spring 2018 to spring 2019 their share was cut in half, their listeners dropped from 56,000 to 34,000 and their rank went from tied for 1st to 8th. Rogers "updated" CKOT after acquiring ownership, including dumping their longtime morning show for one "more relevant". Nice move by Rogers.

That's interesting information. Count me in with the other 22,000 former listeners. I suspected their ratings would drop, but not to this extent. Before the new owners this station was somewhat unique. It was live from 06:00 - 24:00 and had real time / temp. checks and quite a wide spanning playlist. They even managed to find rarely played Canadian artists like Robin Wakefield. I think the 'Saturday Night Dance Party' was well listened to as well. They even played (egad) an hour of gospel music Sunday night from 23:00 - 24:00.

Not now, same cookie cutter stuff. Another vacant preset button on the car radio. I wonder if their sponsors have noticed.

Last edited by darcyh (August 24, 2019 8:51 pm)

 

August 24, 2019 8:47 pm  #9


Re: New Format Hopes To Reach The Audience Radio Ignores

Recently WHLX 1590 Marine City, MI (also low power 92.7 via a translator) debuted a 'new' format. Mixing country, rock and folk. Calling itself "The Hills". 

Totally automated and interestingly touting its 92.7 frequency while broadcasting in mono with a stereo pilot. Its 1590 signal gets into Lambton County through the day, 92.7 only around the Sarnia area.

https://www.927whlx.com/

Kudos to them for trying something new. I've heard a lot worse.

 

August 25, 2019 11:34 am  #10


Re: New Format Hopes To Reach The Audience Radio Ignores

K106 in Owen Sound had a similar format as WHLX back in 1993. The station moved from A/C to an interesting hybrid format of modern country/adult acoustic rock. The station branded themselves as the "Mix that Kicks". Played everything from Toad the Wet Sprocket and B-52's to Dwight Yoakam and Martina McBride.  Also they had a sprinkling of folk in the music mix as well. All of the music was over about a ten year span and they played current songs that fit the format as well. I believe they had this brand for about 7 years and then Bayshore brought in a new country FM station into the market and K106 moved  to a A/C Rock format. Today they are a more traditional A/C station.