James Cridland’s Weekly Links: The power of broadcast advertising; lots of podcasting

James Cridland is Managing Director of media.info, and a U.K.-based radio futurologist. He is a consultant, writer and public speaker who concentrates on the effect that new platforms and technology are having on the radio business. Find out more or subscribe at http://james.cridland.net

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There was a TV ad in the UK Leaders Debate last Thursday for voter registration in our upcoming election, which aired at 9.00pm. Live stats from the website it pointed to clearly showed the real power of broadcast, with site figures changing from 1,000 to 10,000 in the blink of an eye. Transparency for advertisers is important for broadcast media, and radio could learn from this. Meanwhile, as Ian Forrester points out, Google is completely changing the rules around TV advertising; is radio learning from this, too? It strikes me that radio’s biggest issue going forward isn’t based around content; it’s around the business model of a man shouting at you for thirty seconds about replacement windows. John Rosso from Triton has a good view here: Online Radio Consumption Surges, But Ad Measurement And Buying Processes Need To Improve — I wonder what it’ll take for radio to make ads sound better and work more effectively, and focus on improving yield. UK radio’s cost-per-thousand is lower now than it was in 1995, even before you consider inflation.

United States

  • Inside NPR’s podcasting strategy – the watchword appears to be ‘focus’, says this Poynter piece
  • Spotify to add podcasting into its service, says Bloomberg. Previously, Apple bought Swell, and Deezer bought Stitcher.
  • A Bunch of Reasons to Give Your Sound Engineer Some Love – nice stuff from Dick Orkin’s Radio Ranch. (Sound engineer, in this case, refers to audio producers for spots and promos)
  • A Silicon Valley radio aggregator isn’t always your friend when it gears up to launch a ton of competing services. I linked to this address which contained (as you’ll see from the URL) a set of premium-branded TuneIn stations. They didn’t play in the UK or the US; but there’s no doubt that they’re planning something, somewhere.
  • 26 podcasts you should be listening to – Vox made a list. Keep reading down, there are good ones in here. (Not much from outside the US, mind you)
  • Interesting to see big broadcast people leaving to start podcast businesses. Meet Amplifi Media.
  • Facebook hosting doesn’t change things, the world already changed – Great longform post about the media and the internet
  • Larry Gifford helps define what “local” actually means for radio. It’s not enough to be broadcasting from a local facility; better to be real and relevant (wherever you’re broadcasting from, I think)


  • UTV could sell the jewel in the crown of their local stations to Global, if this report is true. It would continue the brand consolidation theme in the UK, as Juice would turn into another Capital.
  • Ed Miliband, the leader of the opposition, being interviewed by Geoff Lloyd on Absolute Radio. Note that this is filmed as if it’s TV: lapel microphones in a set, rather than silly headphones and massive large microphones in a radio studio. Visualised radio done right.
  • A free election guide for UK radio stations, to ensure they’re the right side of the law. Lots of rules and regulations as we near a general election.
  • Voiceover industry gears up for VOX 2015 – a conference for the voiceover and audio industry. Interesting idea in here for presentations live from the US/Canada. [I wrote this]
  • Nice to see good news about community radio in the UK – Radio Verulam wins Mayoral Award [I wrote this]
  • UK first country in world where half of all ad spend is on digital media
  • Nice deal from talkSPORT into sub-saharan Africa

In other places…

Brad Hill