Monthly Archives: August 2009

Bringing Local Back To Radio

WLNG Sag Harbor is a real throwback.

Today’s radio programmers can learn a bunch by studying the past.

However, WLNG is not one of those once great Top 40 stations from the past many of us reminisce over.   Live and local 24 hours a day WLNG is the real deal.

There is nothing like it on the air anywhere that I can find.   They use hundreds of jingles, and a very, very deep music library.

Lately my WIFI radio has been busy.  But most of the big city stations it plays are deadly dull.

The ‘Nine Format’ lives.

You may remember the classic spoof about consultants done in the 1970s to chronical the format history of fictional WVWA Pound Ridge, New York.  If not, it’s on the Reel Radio site.

How would we know the WVWA spoof would become reality?  Today’s radio is devoid of connection. Just like WVWA when it became  ‘Nine’!

Things were so streamlined on “Nine” the jocks, listeners and jingles only said  “nine’! on air.   After all it was created through ‘research’.

That’s not too far from what is happening in the streamlined PPM world.

PDs seem more concerned about what will turn listeners off, than what will keep them connected to the station and coming back.    Mark Ramsey makes this point in his blog this week.  He’s dead right.

WLNG is about community.  Oh sure they play music, lots of it around the heavy load of spots and PSAs voiced by local merchants and firemen.   WLNG connects.

Sag Harbor sounds like the most active town in the country thanks to WLNG.

Programmers dealing with talk stations made up of mostly network shows can take a lesson from WLNG.  Fill those spot breaks with local voices.   Get the sales staff to have the local business owner voice his spot.

There is probably no better way to endorse the local sales effort than to have local businessmen do their own spots.  The others at Rotary will notice.

WLNG has captured what made local weekly newspapers work.  Put the Cub Scouts picture in the paper.  Mom, Dad, Grandma and the Aunts will buy the paper.

Same is true for putting local voices on the radio.

Consider using local voices to image the station music and promotions.

This is not to say that everything on WLNG  fits into many of today’s formats.  But PDs should give them a listen with an ear to finding ideas that help them localize their own stations.

As the PSA tag says, “thanks WLNG for years of service”.

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Posted by on August 3, 2009 in Radio programming


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