...don't even ignore 'em.
-- Samuel Goldwyn

Saturday, January 01, 2005

More on liberal talk radio...

Email-chatting with a radio friend the other day...she asked me if I'd been listening to the new local Air America station. She said she thought there's potential there, "if they can just get some advertisers."

True. This is American non-public radio...if the advertisers don't buy, bye-bye. Got to thinking about how local radio ad sales go. Ran into the sales manager of our local AA station (not Alcoholics Anonymous, Air America), part of one of the new major "clusters" of stations, owned by Viacom.

He said they're putting together a separate sales crew for the lib-prog station--cluster stations are mostly sold as a group by combo sales staffs. It must be quite a cultural stretch for radio sales people. Conservative talk radio had a natural constituency of local conservative in-your-face businesspeople. Excuse me: businessmen.

It isn't so much that you can't find liberal salespeople, or businesspeople. It's that most radio time is sold on ratings, not ideology. So, the major advertisers will be waiting to see how the new station (and, nationally, the network) rates with Arbitron. This usually takes a year.

The local sales crew will have to go find the liberal advertisers (oxymoron?). Some will be beating their door down to buy, but surely not enough to deliver a profit. Your lib-prog-talk salesperson will have to be committed.

And, eventually, could end up committed. In a soft room.

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