Tuesday, November 07, 2006

"A director has to function like a commander in the field in time of battle. You need the same ability to inspire, terrify, encourage, reinforce and generally dominate. So it's partly a question of personality, which isn't so easy to acquire as a skill."

"I believe that if there had never been men, there would never have been art - but if there had never been women, men would never have made art."

"...a work of art is a conscious human effort that has to do with communication. It is that or it is nothing."

Orson Welles

Bravo Beasley! Kathleen McCarten-Bricketto
named head of new Interactive Divison. She reports directly to Bruce Beasley the firm's president and COO. Smart move. 5% of WPOW's revenue is now generated online, a good start. To generate interactive revenue you need to get serious and that means dedicating resources and that starts with getting the right people involved. In my experience nothing really happens without people "dedicated" full-time to developing interactive revenue. Giving sellers an "interactive budget" or adding interactive goals to their "non-spot" or "NTR" budget will not get the job done. Will they write some business they were not writing before? Yes but it is not likely to be significant. Until you add staff that is 100% focused on producing interactive revenues, until you have a group of sellers that win or lose, get rich or starve, based ONLY on their sales of interactive, until then you are simply playing in the margins. Your interactive initiative deserves full-time staff. My hat is off to Bruce, Kathleen and the entire Beasley team.

My last station post was with CBS. I left in 1999. Since then I have spent the majority of my time working in interactive, digital or so-called "new media." Many of my hours are dedicated to working closely with broadcasters, helping them to make the most of their digital assets. In 2000 I was asked to speak at one of those Radio Ink "internet" gatherings in California. During the Q&A someone asked what was needed to ensure the success of their website. My answer then remains my answer now. How to make your station website a major success...

  1. Dedicated sales people (at least one, see #3, that does not have access to any broadcast inventory, that means ZERO, online only, sink or swim. Hint: hire someone with interactive experience. Your local CitySearch sellers are a good place to start.)
  2. Dedicated webmaster (the clever part-time high school kid while a good resource will not get it done - you need a full-time developer, one who dreams in code. See #4)
  3. Dedicated resources equal to current costs of morning show (in cash and head count)
  4. Develop and respect your interactive assets (development never stops)
  5. Measure, measure, measure! Daily, hourly. Create a dashboard and live by it.