One of my favorite forward thinkers Seth Godin laid an egg on the Radio industry today in a post entitled “An end of radio”.
Once you have access to a million radio stations online, why would you listen to endless commercials and the top 40?
With so many podcasts, free downloads and Spotify stations to listen to, why? With traffic, weather and talking maps in your pocket, why wait for the announcer to get around to telling you what you need to know?
Indeed – why?
And why isn’t every single one of us working in Radio asking ourselves these questions too?
If the answer is . . . . because . . . inertia! We fail.
As Seth accurately points out:
The first people to leave the radio audience will be the ones that the advertisers want most. And it will spiral down from there.
I believe a lot of Radio listening right now is intertial – it’s happening by habit, and there will be a tipping point where it’s just as easy to access the choices that are NOT radio as it is to choose Radio.
We can respond to Seth and any critical view of Radio in 2 ways.
We can consider the criticism constructively and seek to use it to improve and create a new future. Or we can react emotionally, get defensive and dismiss it as “negative”.
Research Director responded on Twitter with a call for Radio to “fight back” against the “gloom & doom”.
I’m all for a fight – but maybe we need to “fight back” against mediocre content and legacy thinking that is driving our most valuable listeners (the ones advertisers most want) to seek other choices?
We’re not helping ourselves to be a top choice when we continue programming to the remaining passive, un-engaged masses with wikkid short attention spans.
Because the only thing Gloomy or Doomy about Radio – is thinking it’s future should look and sound like it’s past.
btw – also in Radio News today – the Wall Street Journal is bailing out of Radio. But yeah – get mad at Seth for asking – WHY?