Why Talk Radio Remains A Great Venue For Publicity

Why Talk Radio Remains A Great Venue For Publicity

A day in my life usually involves phone or email conversations with prospective clients.  They always have questions about how they can better their position to promote themselves and/or their business. But one line of questioning I always find mystifying deals with talk radio, a medium I love and we’ve made great use of for our clients over the years. The question they ask is: “Does anyone actually listen to talk radio anymore?” Now, from my own experience, I could answer that with an emphatic “absolutely!” But I decided a higher authority from the world of talk radio would be more credible. So I checked in with my friend, Michael Harrison, publisher of Talkers magazine, the industry’s top trade magazine, to see how he would respond. It turns out Michael was even more emphatic than me. Since the modern era of talk radio began in the late 1980s, he says, its detractors have been quick to point to every blemish or minor ratings down-tick as indicating the death of the format. They could not be more wrong. “If no one is listening to talk radio, then no one is listening to radio at all,” Michael says. “With the normal ups and downs inherent in any format of the medium, talk radio (and country music radio) remain the two most-listened-to genres of radio, ratings period after ratings period.” Is talk radio important and influential? Michael says you might as well ask if voters are influential and if active consumers are influential. “Research continues to indicate that talk radio is where a high concentration of voters and active consumers are indeed...
Why Talk Radio May Be Your Best Bet for Publicity

Why Talk Radio May Be Your Best Bet for Publicity

What’s the most effective traditional medium for getting publicity to promote your business or service? That depends on your audience and your message. You may find more of your target demographics among magazine readers than TV audiences, or among talk radio listeners than newspaper readers. Most likely, though, you’ll find at least some segment using each of the traditional news media – the newspapers and other publications, TV talk shows and talk radio. A trickier problem is identifying where your message will get the best reception. Print editors and news talk show hosts and producers are looking for content – articles and guest interviews – that will interest their audiences. Local and national daytime TV talk shows tend to like lighter subject matter and topics that women find helpful. Print publications, both the paper kind and those publishing online, gravitate toward articles linked to the news of the day. AM/FM and satellite talk radio has a place for all of the above – and lots more, which is one reason I’ve been an avid listener forever. I’ve also been a syndicated show host, and I’ve been getting clients talk radio publicity for 24 years. I am, emphatically, a diehard talk radio fan. Now that radio has fully embraced digital media, it has become even more valuable as a publicity tool. I asked fellow radio lover Alex Hinojosa, our vice president of media operations and a major-market radio personality for 17 years, to share some of talk radio’s distinct advantages. Because he’s spent so much time on the other side, I wanted you to hear his perspective: Guests get unedited...
Talk Radio’s One of the Best Values for Publicity

Talk Radio’s One of the Best Values for Publicity

One of our clients, a financial advisor, recently had a great interview on a Sirius/XM talk radio show. His office got lots of calls from listeners afterward, and the show host did as well. They were both thrilled. It didn’t surprise me. As a longtime talk radio fan and a host of talk shows for several years, I’m well aware of how radio listeners respond to a great guest with a relevant topic. Radio has held listeners enthralled for decades because it’s such a unique media experience. I believe that being a guest on talk radio is still one of the most effective, affordable and convenient ways for a person promoting anything to gain visibility. But I am admittedly biased. So I asked Talkers magazine publisher Michael Harrison if he thinks the changing media landscape has affected the value of talk radio shows for people with a message to share. Talkers, dubbed “The Bible of Talk Radio” by Business Week Magazine, is the leading talk radio trade publication. Michael has been involved in radio for 30 years and founded Talkers in 1990. He replied emphatically. “Talk radio is a major platform for people seeking publicity because it literally puts your message right in the mind of the listener,” Michael said. “Radio has a very dedicated audience, and they’re paying attention. They are an active audience and a large audience. If you’re trying to promote a brand, a product, a business, it’s worth gold to be in front of them.” Those who say talk radio is losing its vitality come from political circles, he says. “Talk radio has such a...
Tips For Giving A Great Radio Interview

Tips For Giving A Great Radio Interview

3 Tips to Wow Your Talk Radio Audience I have a favorite new talk show to tune into on weekday evenings, and I’m not saying that simply because the host is EMSI’s own Alex Hinojosa. (Although that certainly doesn’t hurt!) Alex, our vice president of media operations, has an extensive background in radio. He worked as a national talk-show host, and was an executive producer for CBS Radio, Clear Channel Media & Entertainment and ESPN in the nation’s major markets. I’ve always found it valuable to have former TV and radio show hosts and producers, and print journalists, on our staff. They have a deep understanding of each medium’s quirks and what types of articles and pitches will get results. They’re also trained to respond quickly to breaking news, which can result in great publicity for our clients. Several of our staff members, including me, still work on the side in their media, which I love; it keeps us happy and our skills sharp. That’s why Alex and I co-host The PR Insider — does the name sound familiar? — most Thursdays from 3 to 3:30 p.m. There, we elaborate on topics I’ve written about here. (You can listen live, or catch our archived shows, via this link) Back in the day, we worked together for several years on a show called The Family Roundtable, where we talked about family issues with guests ranging from the late actor Tony Curtis to Rosalie Rock, mother of comedian Chris Rock, and Carol Burnett’s sidekick, Vicky Lawrence. That was great fun and gave me lots of fodder for the booklet I wrote...
How to Get Publicity from Talk Radio

How to Get Publicity from Talk Radio

I’ve gotten back into hosting a talk radio show and giving interviews, and the experience takes me back – way back! – to how I started EMSI Public Relations in the first place. I was, and still am, a huge talk radio listener. It’s educational, entertaining, and the most open of the mainstream media to any and all topics. Pair a great show host with an informative guest (tips on that coming up) and I’m rapt. That’s why, when I started EMSI 23 years ago, I focused on booking clients on talk radio shows. Over the years, of course, we added TV, print and social media. The four media each have a different audience and attributes that sometimes make one better for a particular message than another. But, between you and me, talk radio is still my favorite. Since I returned to doing interviews myself as a marketing tool for EMSI, I’m reminded just how much I enjoy this medium. Doing an interview over the phone from my living room or my office is easy, the conversations are fun, and I not only help people by sharing what I know, I get the word out about my business! If you haven’t considered talk radio for marketing, you might want to. Here’s what those interviews can do for you: Position you as an expert in your field. Gain you (and your product/company/book) the implied endorsement of mainstream media. Put your name and the name of whatever you’re selling in front of a large audience. The best way to ensure you have a successful interview is to forget you’ve got something...
Why Talk Radio is an Easy Publicity Tool

Why Talk Radio is an Easy Publicity Tool

Last week, one of our talk radio clients sent us a “beautiful link” (his words) to a blog post he’d found. The blogger, who writes for a broadcast engineering magazine, had posted, in part: “I was minding my own business the other morning, listening with one ear to local AM talk radio, when something hit my radar screen so hard it darned near broke it. What I heard was a guest phone interview with a man as credible as his words were chilling.” Of course, that radio guest was our client. His audience grew exponentially by being exposed to the blogger’s audience. The blog post generated comments and discussion among the writer’s followers, and that’s exactly what our client wants: to get people talking about an issue of concern to him. As a listener, I’ve been a huge fan of talk radio for nearly my entire adult life.  That love actually spawned my business, and I was even more thrilled when it eventually led to me hosting my own show. From a marketing perspective, I always understood the power of talk radio for anyone trying to get their message to the masses.   It has enormous value in any marketing plan. Here’s why you should be a fan, too. First, know that there are a few types of radio stations. The conventional ones are referred to as terrestrial. That’s your AM and FM stations.  AM is home to most talk formatted shows and it’s where we book clients most often. FM is primarily music but also carries some talk shows; you’re probably most familiar with those heard on National Public...