What do teens want? Radio could be something they wanted...if radio actually targeted them.
The Future of Music Coalition says "radio's wrecked...but it can be repaired". Radio better get a-fixing quick.
In reality, teens still listen to the radio; it's just not on the same old receiver. To teens, radio's online, it's on their computer, it's on their iPod or phone. The very definition of "radio" has evolved for teens. Radio just hasn't evolved with teens.
In the ten years since the 1996 Telecom Bill changed the radio industry, radio aggressively went for the ratings gold, reshaping itself into the most "advertising-friendly" medium it could be for 25-54 year old adults.
"Unfriendly" ratings demos (e.g. teens) were avoided, which meant radio mainly stopped providing teen-centric programming and formats.
This naturally created a demand vacuum, which quickly got filled by the Internet and the iPod.
Radio has to put teens back into its targets again and begin building relationships for the future. It's the only way radio will find growth.
Retargeting teens was the main theme delivered this week at ratings publisher Arbitron's annual state of the industry gathering in D.C. CEO Steve Morris said:
"There are few bold and innovative ideas for the young audience..., on reaching the 12 - 17 age group. Champion kids programming and audience measurement for this audience. Get them before them become iPod-addicted."One-fifth of the current U.S. population is 12-24. Radio future must attract today's teens now.
"(Radio is), at a minimum, in the audio entertainment business," he said. "Try new stuff for young listeners. Be thinking in terms of what it means to be in that broader entertainment market. Find new vehicles for audio entertainment."
"Radio is moving too slowly, and the difference between us and other media is widening, not narrowing," he said. "Radio could be the most accountable medium but this vision has not become reality, and I think it is a lost opportunity."
To read more of his comments, click here.
posted by Chris Kennedy @ Friday, December 15, 2006,