Posting plans revealed today


The RAB, working with larger group owners, Katz Radio Group, Interep and Arbitron, will announce today posting resolutions and guidelines based on the 5/21 Spring Board of Directors meeting. Posting shows ratings a buy was based on vs. the audience it actually delivered. So far, CBS Radio, Greater Media and a few others have promised posting. We assume many others will be announced as on board today.

Among the other bullet points we expect to hear about:

* RAB CEO Jeff Haley has said posting and guarantees will include diary markets as well as PPM, but we’re not sure how that will work. With PPM it’s pretty easy to figure out, but with diaries it’s a different story. Jerry Lee, WBEB-FM (B-101) Philadelphia owner, told RBR in the past that posting only makes sense if you are a PPM market.

* The MRC recently denied accreditation for NYC and Philly. How will this affect things?

* We hope they will detail how this will all be done at the station. Jerry Lee says he knows of nothing yet in place on the radio side: “No, we don’t have any software. And I don’t know of any software…As of the moment, we’re not posting yet and we don’t have any software.”

Kathy Crawford, MindShare President/Local Broadcast, told us the software companies will likely have to develop new programming to implement posting: “Pretty much all of the big software companies who work with agencies have that capability. I think that the station software companies could do it—some of them—the problem is we don’t have a criteria yet off of which to post. So before we do that, we have to establish the criteria. Because there may be things that on both sides, in theory, that have to be programmed. Or done manually until the program is adjusted. We all have to agree on the methodology first.”

Again, PPM will be much more suitable for automating posting procedures than diary.

* One of the questions we hope will be answered is how smaller markets will be handled. Saga CEO Ed Christian recently mentioned at his quarterly conference call that they have dropped Arbitron ratings in many of their smaller markets because of the lack of national business. How can they issue guarantees via posting to advertisers without ratings? He said the smaller owners have largely been left out of posting discussions with the RAB.