Public radio listeners continue to lead in digital media use, Jacobs learns

Friday, August 23, 2013 - 2:25pm

Jacobs Media has revealed what it found when it studied the digital media habits of public radio listeners earlier this year. Here are some of the quick takeaways:

  • 16% of weekly public radio consumption is on digital (Internet and mobile) channels.
  • Public radio listeners of all ages are becoming more reliant on mobile (phones, tablets, and even connected dashboards) technology. Half have a tablet, nearly two-thirds text, and nearly all have a mobile phone.
  • Listeners' use of social media, texting, mobile devices, and streaming all continute to grow.
  • More than half can now connect their iPod or phone to their car.

See the full size graphs of Jacobs' findings here.

October DASH conference to focus on radio and "the connected car"

Friday, July 26, 2013 - 12:50pm

Industry consultants Jacobs Media and Valerie Shuman, along with news source Radio Ink, will present a seminar focusing on radio in cars, called DASH: The Connected Car AudioTainment Conference.

The conference, October 23-24 in Detroit, is "designed to bring the automotive, radio, and advertising industries together to explore partnerships, exchange information, and learn from one another in a collaborative setting," according to an announcement.

"Changing technology in the digital age is redefining the decades-long connection between these two storied industries," the conference organizers say. "At the center of this change is the 'connected car'..."

Read more about the conference here.

Jacobs: Pandora outpacing radio in efforts to attract young professional employees

Thursday, June 13, 2013 - 12:55pm

You know Pandora is building its local sales forces with experienced radio AEs. The webcaster, Jacobs Media president Fred Jacobs writes today, is also working to show young professionals that it's a far cooler, friendlier, more exciting, and more vibrant place to work.

Check out Fred's Jacoblog today to see Pandora's three-minute video produced to convey just that message.

Whither radio? Radio used to be able to get away with offering low salaries and benefits because everyone wanted to be in radio. Today, radio's more likely to be announcing lay-offs than new rounds of hiring. And that's going to hurt radio's future.

"It’s a different world," Jacobs writes. "There’s not an endless supply of great people who want to work here."

Fred's even moving his company to a different office space he says will "reflect the changing nature of younger workers and their needs."

Here's some inspiration for him: Today Wired writes about the new launch of Herman Miller’s Public Office Landscape furniture system, and the response to it from Fuseproject (the design firm run by Yves Béhar) "to capture the spirit of our networked lives in a collection of chairs, desks, and space shaping components."

Read Jacobs' Jacoblog piece here and Wired here.

Experts warn radio the time to bring in younger demos is now

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 - 6:20pm

Fred Jacobs and Jerry Del Colliano both note this week that radio's "systemic" ambivalence towards the younger set will likely eventually have disastrous results for AM/FM radio.

Jacobs actually refers to "Generation Z's" (today's under-18s), Del Colliano "Millennials" (young adults), but they make a similar point: "When radio loses generations of listeners, its relevance in the world of media options is going to be called into question," Jacobs wrote in his JacoBlog. Del Colliano says what most broadcasters are doing now, in terms of attracting younger demos, is a "losing formula... driving the essential next generation away from radio."

So, what do broadcasters need to do?

"If you want to know what you’ll be doing in a couple of years or so, study teens," Jacobs wrote. To illustrate, he cites the increasingly popular Snapchat photo/social platform -- mostly ignored by radio.

On his Inside Music Media blog, Del Colliano cranked out ten action steps for broadcasters to better speak to teens and young adults, including reformulating the approach towards "morning shows," reinventing radio's "formatics," and building content designed around a "two minutes or less" attention span.

"Fix what's on the air, buy more years and then personally escort your newfound Millennial listeners to your next business -- digital content," he advised.

Jacobs concludes: "Because if you don’t do the research and take the time to listen and learn from Gen Z, you lose powerful insights into what may be right around the corner – your corner."

Read Fred Jacbos' JacoBlog here, and register for Inside Music Media here.

45% of TechSurvey 9 respondents listen to online radio weekly

Monday, May 6, 2013 - 1:00pm

Jacobs Media released the results of this year's TechSurvey 9 today -- their study of the habits and adoption of technology by radio listeners. Jacobs, for what it calls the "largest technology survey ever conducted for radio," examined how "Baby Boomers" plus "Gen's X, Y, and Z" across twelve radio formats use Internet streaming, social media, mobile technology, and more.

The TechSurvey 9 "Media Usage Pyramid 2013" (below) shows that 45% of Jacobs' respondents are now weekly Internet radio listeners. Interestingly, this is the same percentage Arbitron and Edison Research (in their Infinite Dial 2013 study) found as monthly Net radio users. Their weekly reach was just 33%. Keep in mind that The Infinite Dial examined a wider base of study subjects. See more in RAIN here.

Fully 20% of those studied are weekly Pandora listeners -- but Jacobs points out nearly a third of Pandora listeners are getting annoyed by commercials (that number was 20% last year).

This year, 11% of TechSurvey respondents own a "digital dash" system like Ford Sync in their cars. More than half of those surveyed can connect iPods or smartphones to their car's dash (62% of Gen Y).

In the press release, Jacobs Media President Fred Jacobs says his "takeaway" is "radio’s ability to uniquely connect with consumers on their preferred platforms is the secret sauce for future success in the digital space." Likely a thought Jacobs will explain in more detail during the six webinars the team will present on the study (each focusing on a different radio format group). Details and registration are here. See more graphs from the study, including a larger version of the "Media Usage Pyramid," here.

AccuRadio's Gehron will speak at The Conclave in July

Friday, March 29, 2013 - 12:05pm

Radio programming and management veteran and AccuRadio COO John Gehron (right) is one of radio luminaries confirmed to appear at The Conclave in July.

Event organizers this week announced its first round of speakers for "Conclave 38: The Learning Conference," July 17-19 at the Minneapolis/Park Place Doubletree Hotel. The Conclave begins with the fourth annual "Jacobs Media Summer School."

Also scheduled to appear are HipCricket CEO Ivan Braiker, Jacobs Media president Fred Jacobs and Digital & Social Media Strategist Lori Lewis, Chris Miller Digital principal Chris Miller, Edison Research co-founder and president Larry Rosin, and Sabo Media principal Walter Sabo.

More info on The Conclave is here.

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