RAB’s Haley makes a new case for radio at NYSBA


Speaking to more than 150 of New York’s most influential and powerful radio decision makers this week at the NYS Broadcasters (NYSBA) 47th annual executive conference, Jeff Haley, RAB CEO, summoned New York’s radio execs to get behind a recently launched campaign designed to encourage consumers to reignite their passion for radio.

Supported by the RAB, NAB and Digital Radio Alliance, the "Radio Heard Here" (radioheardhere.com) campaign aims to underscore radio’s presence in a digital world, and overcome the perception that radio offers stale content and old technology.

"The goal of this expansive effort is to shift perceptions and drive business for you all," he said, "Stations will receive a marketing kit shortly informing them how they can get involved in the coming weeks."

Launched April 16 in Las Vegas, the multi-year initiative includes advertising, industry outreach, PR and viral communications, including videos on youtube.com, and highlights how radio offers accessible technology, a vast mount of play list variety and format diversity. 

Earlier in his presentation, entitled, "A New Case for Radio," Haley emphasized that radio online is flourishing in America.  More than 4,200 stations currently offer online programming, and 33 million listeners are opting to tune into their favorite shows over the Internet each week.

"Around 10 to 11% of our total audience is listening to radio through their computer screens," he said.  "The idea that you can do contests online and use the Web to create pod casts helps take our brand from an audio experience to an audio and visual experience."

The former Time Warner Global Marketing exec, who was joined at the conference by David Rehr, NAB CEO and Chris Rohrs, CEO of the Television Bureau of Advertising, cited New York City’s 1010 WINS as a prime example of a station that has strengthened its brand by embracing the numerous possibilities offered by the Internet. 

"1010 WINS is now much more than the ‘you give us 22 minutes, we give you the world’ audio experience," explained Haley.  "It has become a 24/7 experience that can happen in video, audio, through pod casts, alerts and a variety of different interactive relationships with the brand.  That’s something that’s incredibly powerful."

During his presentation, Haley also elaborated on how local radio Web site traffic has increased 27% in the past year, while radio station Website revenue has skyrocketed from $18 million to $255 million in five years.

"This is a branding world and radio should be in this environment," he said, adding that online business is projected to grow to $1.5 billion by the end of 2009. " We’ve got an incredibly strong brand and we’ve got loyal listeners.  And we can meet that demand for advertising through our online sites. With a growth rate of more than 10% a month, online radio is the fastest growing media platform out there today."