Study finds radio tech haves and have nots


An independent study sponsored by Wheatstone Corporation shows the radio industry evolving into technology “haves” and “have nots” based on their ownership structure.

The study showed facilities with the financial backing of a station group deploying new revenue generating technologies at about twice the frequency of stand-alone radio stations.

“This study comes to the radio industry at a critical time. As traditional ad revenue has declined, radio organizations are experimenting with new technologies that will add revenue by enabling them to deliver programming through a variety of new channels,” said Wheatstone Vice President Andrew Calvanese.

Of the 10 revenue generating technologies the study measured, streaming a station’s radio signal over the Internet was seen as having the most potential. Having a website that interacts with listeners was second, while streaming multiple channels of programming was third.

Just how important is online streaming? The majority of radio professionals surveyed believe that by 15 years out their stations will have more online listeners than over-the-air listeners. A small number said that’s already the case. But by 2025 61.3% of the survey participants at standalone stations and 54.8% at group-owned stations believe their stations will have more listeners online that from RF reception.

The standalone and group-owned station respondents were split on which technology they will deploy next to generate new revenues. For group-owned stations the top choice, at 19%, as promoting their station with a mobile phone app.

That was also a high priority for standalones, 15.7%, but broadcasting in HD Radio ranked higher, at 17.4%. That may be due to more group-owned stations having already deployed HD Radio.

The survey was conducted for Wheatstone by Alethea Research. Questionnaires were distributed to radio professionals via email and 302 completed questionnaires were returned.

RBR-TVBR observation: Have been saying this for the past three years that ‘Technology waits for no one’ and radio must fully engage into the ‘New Media’ world and build asset value to their sticks. The radio and television industry is almost a full generation behind in what they are doing digitally.

The directory industry or yellow pages was forced to embrace digital. Radio and in other cases television have yet to truly understand the power and dollars available to them in the digital space… mainly because unlike the directory industry which was dying fast, radio and television has not yet been forced to adapt.

As a result, they have never fully embraced the language. The radio and television industry doesn’t posses the daily vocabulary to understand what ‘New Media’ truly is or why it’s a critical next step in the radio and TV industry.

Going into a new year this will be the final shot for both to either learn and advance or pay the piper as the audience or consumer is already tech savvy and getting their entertainment in the digital space.

RBR-TVBR is going help broadcasters bring the ‘Vocabulary’ to the forefront in the New Year. We understand Radio and TV needs to be taught the ‘Vocabulary’ of the ‘New Media’ world. Just like you we at RBR-TVBR are broadcasters and we too had to learn slowly the ‘New Media’ digital business.

Our commitment is to the broadcasting business: Look for RBR-TVBR to help, teach, and take this leadership role with our reinvention of ‘MBR’ (Managers Business Report) in 2011. Key interactive reports that are fully focused on the challenges that affect the broadcasters business today.
MBR will have ‘Solutions’ 

If you read this and agree then join us and let’s grow our broadcasting business together. Engage in RBR-TVBR and MBR in 2011. Contact Jim Carnegie [email protected] Carl Marcucci [email protected] or June Barnes [email protected] to see how you can use us to grow with us.