iHeart Media announced today that Jim Lawson, VP Hispanic Media Programming and Brand Manager for National Programming Platforms, is expanding his duties (not to mention his list of job titles) to include Regional Manager for iHeartMedia/Colorado and Operations Manager for the company’s Colorado Springs and Pueblo stations … KMJ/Fresno Executive Producer Christina Musson moves to a chair on the other side of the glass, joining John Broeske as co-host of the appropriately dubbed Broeske & Musson show, airing weekdays from 9-11am … 79-year old Los Angeles Dodgers’ Baseball Hall of Fame broadcaster Jaime Jarrin (pictured) — who began calling Dodgers’ games in 1958 — will be joined in the team’s Spanish-language broadcast booth this season by his son, Jorge Jarrin. The Los Angeles Times has more on the official pairing of the unique father/son broadcast team HERE … Chicago Cubs’ faithful and baseball fans nationwide can listen-in on this weekend’s memorial service for Ernie Banks, as WGN/Chicago airs the event live at 10am (CT) on Saturday (1/31). Sports Director Dave Eanet will anchor the broadcast tribute to ‘Mr. Cub’ that will also stream at the station’s website and via its mobile app.
In the second release from a new study of radio industry thought-leaders by Mark Ramsey Media, managers say their radio brands can make more money by monetizing streams separately with their own spot inventory than by simulcasting those spots with the over-the-air brands. The study was conducted by telephone in November/December, 2014 among more than 100 Top-50 market radio General Managers, Sales Managers, Digital Executives, and Program Directors. According to Ramsey 56% of respondents said a separate monetization strategy for streams with their own spot inventory will likely make more money than simulcasting those streaming spots with over-the-air content (26%). That’s a ratio of more than two to one. Commenting on the findings Ramsey said, “Despite the temptation to simulcast streams for a remote chance of overall ratings impact, most managers acknowledge that more money can likely be made by separating streaming from over the air inventory.” To read more click HERE.
Cumulus Media VP/Brand Solutions Paul O’Malley (left) has been named to the newly created role of SVP/ Strategic Sales Partnerships for Cumulus-owned Westwood One. Based in Atlanta the 25-year industry veteran will report directly to WW One President Steve Shaw … Meanwhile, in other news from Westwood One, the network will soon vacate its Dallas facilities on Montfort Drive upon expiration of the lease on the complex that once served as the Texas radio home of ABC Radio Networks. WW One plans to build out broadcast facilities at its Dallas-based TM Studios location and will move programming, production and affiliate sales there later this year. Back-office functions will be relocated to an existing Cumulus Media facility in nearby Arlington, TX.
For the second consecutive year, Westwood One presents the Super Bowl Sound Awards, a consumer-driven index that celebrates brand advertisers and audio creative. Last year’s winner, Motel 6, earned the top spot with a clever parody on using AutoCorrect. The other top four vote-getters, in consecutive order, included Tilted Kilt, Subway, Exergen, and Taco Bell. “We created the Sound Awards to connect with and to encourage marketers, creatives, and brands to join forces and showcase the power of sound,” said Brandon Berman, Westwood One SVP/Sports Sales & Marketing. “Following the crowning of a Super Bowl Champion, we look forward to crowning an advertising champion.” Listen to clips from this year’s eligible ads HERE.
(Editor’s Note: With all the media attention that gets showered annually on Super Bowl television ads, NTS MediaOnline Today salutes WW One for championing the power of sound and rewarding the creators of the best national RADIO commercials that air during the biggest sporting event of the year!)
In what he labels “shameless but necessary self-promotion,” retired former CBS Radio News executive Larry McCoy tells NTS MediaOnline Today that Everyone Needs an Editor (Some of Us More Than Others) is the title of his recently published memoirs. Published by Sunstone Press, the book recounts the high and low points of Larry’s forty-five years in journalism, along with the fun and frustrations along the way. McCoy (pictured), whose broadcast news resume also includes stints at UPI, ABC and Radio Free Europe, wrote or edited copy for some of the biggest names in broadcasting — Walter Cronkite, Dan Rather, Ed Bradley, Charles Osgood, Dallas Townsend, Douglas Edwards, Christopher Glenn and Ted Koppel — and says he has “a story or two about all of them!” Find out more HERE.
While it’s the voice of the talent behind the mic at Talk radio that gets all of the attention and accolades, everyone who has been in the business for more than a cup-of-coffee knows that, behind the scenes, there are many talented people who contribute mightily to the success of even the best of talk show hosts. On his Premiere Networks-syndicated radio show today, Rush Limbaugh paid emotional tribute to one such individual, announcing that his program’s Chief of Staff, Christopher “Kit” Carson, died early this morning following a 4-year fight with brain cancer. He was 58. The show’s longest-running employee, Kit began his relationship with Rush over 27 years ago, screening calls and answering mail for the show when it first went national from New York. “Everybody here is … even though we’ve known this was coming for a few weeks, still … it leaves a huge void in everybody’s heart,” said Limbaugh in the opening minutes of his show today. “Kit was in all ways, every way I can of think of, a special human being and person. Because whenever he was on the other end of something you knew there was going to be a laugh, or a joke, or a smile. You knew you were talking to somebody who actively loved being alive. He loved his job, he loved the country, and he loved his kids and his wife Teresa, so much.” Read the full transcript of Rush’s poignant on-air tribute to his longtime friend, and find out just how an unknown guy with a cowboy’s name grew to become the “aide-de-camp” to America’s biggest Talk radio host HERE.
30-year Windy City traffic reporter Leslie Keiling has called commutes for a who’s-who of Chicago radio luminaries during her years on the radio, including Larry Lujack, Steve Dahl (who famously gave her the pseudonym ‘Lane Closure’), John Landecker, Jonathon Brandmeier, Garry Meier and many others. Officially an employee of WGN Radio’s traffic service provider Radiate Media, Keiling (pictured) learned over the weekend that she was being released from her duties at the Tribune News/Talker after a ten-year run. Chicagoland Radio and Media has more details HERE … Alpha Media continues its rapid expansion, with an agreement to acquire four stations in Virginia from Free Lance Star Radio, including WFLS and WNTX/Fredericksburg, WVBX/Spotsylvania and WWUZ/Bowling Green … Eric Von Haessler — who along with Larry Wachs was part of the popular Atlanta radio team ‘The Regular Guys’ — lands a new two-hour weekly solo show on Cox Media Group’s ATL News/Talker WSB.
As broadcasters continually seek to find new ways to build a bridge between traditional broadcast radio and the apparent mistrust of all things traditional by Millennials, a recent feature by Entrepreneur staff writer Kate Taylor reinforces that gaining the trust of ‘Gen Y’ is not something that’s going to be easy. “The rejection of traditional media as inauthentic comes part-and-parcel with the trend of Millennials discarding other norms accepted by previous generations,” writes Taylor. “Gen Y is apparently suspicious of tradition, they are over conventional advertising, home ownership and the promise of Social Security. They’re used to not trusting CEO’s, politicians and just corporations in general.” So, if they don’t trust traditional media, what sources for news do Millennials trust most. Find out by reading the full feature HERE.
In what he is calling a “Pulse” study, veteran media researcher Mark Ramsey reports that radio managers in the nation’s Top 50 markets are anticipating a “dramatic rise” in digital revenue in the next five years. Ramsey’s study was conducted by telephone in November/December, 2014 among more than 100 Top-50 market radio General Managers, Sales Managers, Digital Executives, and Program Directors. “Today, 60% of these managers acknowledge that 5% or less of their overall revenue comes from digital,” says Ramsey (pictured). “And 37% say it’s less than 3%.” But those same managers expect to see a big change in those percentages in the years ahead, with 31% reporting that “more than 15%” of their revenue will come from digital sources five years from today. But, while those stats are encouraging, they also sparked Ramsey to ask, “Since digital revenue means all digital sources — streaming, display, integrated, etc. — do broadcasters have plans in place to navigate this massive transition?” Read more HERE.
Last year, Mike Greenberg — co-host of ESPN Radio’s daily Mike and Mike show — published his debut novel, All You Could Ask For, written to honor the memory of a dear friend. With that success under his belt, Greenberg (pictured) embarked on writing his second book, My Father’s Wives, a look at the modern male psyche in a story that examines one man’s seemingly perfect life, the day it falls apart, and his complicated journey to put it all back together. One day, the book’s protagonist, Jonathan Sweetwater, discovers that his seemingly perfect marriage may have some devastating flaws. Stunned and rattled, Jonathan embarks on a journey to better understand the man he is, by getting to know the man who came before him—his father, from whom he has been estranged since age nine. But to learn more about the man he never really knew, he’ll first have to track down his father’s five ex-wives, in a story that Booklist calls, “Wry, unflinching domestic fiction.” My Fathers Wives is now on sale online and at book retailers nationwide.