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Celebrating Denise

August 24, 2011 2 comments

Max Headroom is back, with a new name:  Denise.  You may not remember the Cyberpunk star of the 1980s, a badly-glitching artificial intelligence construct named Max Headroom as a faulty brain-scanned simulation of a comatose TV reporter. The character originally appeared as the host of a surprisingly successful (non-fiction) pop video show, titled “The Max Headroom Show”.

Now, 25-plus years later, radio has it’s own version of Max, named Denise.

Mark Ramsey’s blog post on “Denise”, the new artificial intelligence DJ just introduced, is well stated and a point of view that mostly reflects my thoughts on the technology…so I’ll link to Mark’s post here in case you haven’t read it yet.  When you’ve finished, come back and share your thoughts on these points and questions:

1)  For years, I’ve advised talent and programmers that every personality is either making the station better or they’re making it worse.  The advance in technology has made it possible for automation to make music intense stations sound great.  But automation does not connect with the audience on a deeper level.  It doesn’t become their “friend”, providing the special bond between station and listener.   The arrival of Denise ushers in a new era of automation that raises the bar yet again.  It’s even more critical now for personalities to elevate their performance, to be more significant…to be a difference-maker.

2)  In a programming world that is pressured by cost controls and is (over) reacting to the tactics dictated by PPM measurement, Denise will provide attractive options for some stations.

3)  The accountants are likely going to see another opportunity to eliminate talent, particularly those less experienced, developing positions.   We’ve already managed to drain the pool of many aspiring personalities.  If AI DJ’s catch on, how much more difficult will it be to grow as talent?

At the end of the day, this could be a good thing for radio.  As mentioned, it increases the “competition”, making it more important to grow personality that matters.   And, as technology takes over, the premium on human connections grows.   Is that a threat or an opportunity.  It depends.  How important are you to your audience?

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Morning Show Boot Camp 2011

June 26, 2011 1 comment

Congratulations to Don Anthony for another fantastic MSBC in Miami.  The convention this year was full of talented, motivated personalities from all over the world and it was an honor to be a part of it.
In addition to the valuable content and idea exchange, it was a pleasure to meet some new faces.  The attitudes are much more positive than in the past as learn to expand their horizons to appeal to listeners in new ways and using all of the engagement tools at their disposal.
For those of you who attended my session on Friday, Facebook to Fortune….thank you.  You can download a copy of the presentation from my website here.

If you haven’t been to attend Boot Camp, please plan to attend next year.  It’s an important ingredient in your career path.

Next up:  I’ll be presenting a session on connecting with the audience emotionally at the Midwest Conclave Learning Conference on July 15 (Minneapolis).  Hope to see you there!

Purpose of Podcasts

March 28, 2011 4 comments

There is a difference between a podcast and offering your show on demand…or at least there should be.  They are different weapons in your strategic war chest, and you should be offering both to your audience.

Offering your show on demand (minus the commercials, time-sensitive material, etc) is smart.  It allows your audience to time-shift listening, making you “always on”.  If they miss a segment, they can catch up by finding a streamed version of the most recent shows on your web site.  It allows listeners to refer friends, family and co-workers to segments, virally spreading the message for you!

But offering your show on demand is not the best use of podcasts.  Podcasts should be unique content, not simply a regurgitation of what was on the air, or even a “best of”.   They don’t have to be long-form.  In fact, short 2-5 minute podcasts on specific topics fit into audience lifestyles much better than long form content.

For ideas and thought-starters on how to create a better, more relatable podcast, let’s brainstorm together.  Comment away.

 

Technology

January 21, 2011 Leave a comment

Technology brings you new tools.But to make it work for you, you must acquire new skills.

Technology brings you new opportunity.
But to be effective, you must learn how to project your personality through it

Technology causes shift in behavior
To remain relevant, you must embrace it.

Categories: Technology