Monday, September 10, 2007

5 Realities From PPM That Apply to EVERYONE

We are learning more and more about PPM and the audience's actual behavior, rather than their recall of what they did, with the early data from Houston and Philly. While PPM may be a long ways from impacting your market, or it may never come, but there are some 'real world' lessons to learn. This week I'll take a look at 5 Realities From PPM - covering 1 each day.

#1 - You Reach A lot More Than You Thought: We've see nearly everyone's cume jump a lot in comparing the diary numbers to the PPM realities in both Houston and Philly. Cume numbers are twice as big in PPM and in some cases nearly 3 times the size. Your station reaches a lot more of the market's audience then we ever thought. Holding on to that listening and turning that cume into P1s is the ultimate challenge for programmers.

One thought for everyone - PPM market or stuck with Diaries forever: You're on air marketing, imaging, and promotions reaches a lot more of the market than you thought. How many times have we all felt that we didn't have enough outside marketing to grow the station? No billboards, TV or direct marketing for long stretches.

Do you really need to use other media to grow your audience? Looking at the high cume numbers we see in the PPM data suggest that you probably already reach a lot more than you thought. Look at the cume for The Buzz or Arrow (the Alternative and Classic Rock in Houston) - the Buzz is over 1 million and Arrow is close to 900,000 in most montly reports. This is in a market of just under 5 million. These stations already reach 20% of the whole market. When you consider that they are targeted stations that are not designed to reach everyone they already reach a lot more 'real potential target listeners' for their music mix and stationality than you could probably get from a billboard on the interstate. How many people will 'cume' the billboard that are very unlikely to become P1 or P2 listeners? Probably not a lot and when you consider how much the board costs!!!

The answer for programmers here is to MARKET TO YOUR CUME ON YOUR AIR. Use your imaging, personalities, and promotions to keep the excitement up. Stay top of mind more often with your cume and more may become P1s or P2s. Crank it up on the air and make it memorable or actionable with the audience. Don't just go for 'small ball' all the time - hit it out of the park and do it as much as possible. "If we only had some marketing dollars" - shouldn't be the issue. Did we capitalize on the potential between the music and with our personalities? You probably don't need to spend lots of money to reach an audience you are already talking to, unless you are a brand new product or have made improvements that are so dramatic that a whole new audience needs to tune in and hear them.

Yes exposing the product all over the place can help - but the first steps to gaining more audience is to charge up the audience you have. Entertain them and keep them excited and entertained every quarter hour.

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