Every Christian station wants three things: More listeners, more fans, and (if you’re a non-com) more donors.
All along we have assumed that the more people we reach, the more fans we’ll create. And that’s true – as far as it goes. But what happens once the total cume you reach peaks? Worse, what happens when the total number of people using radio declines and takes your cume with it (that, by the way, is happening right now)?
See, here’s the mistake we’re making: The path to more fans doesn’t necessarily mean they have to be fans of our on-air product, does it? After all, Christian stations are mission-based. Music is simply one method of achieving that mission, but there are others.
Here’s the key: If you have a large audience you are, essentially, the biggest church in town. You are the place where more believers gather at any given time than at any other single place in town. You have an audience that comes to you again and again for what you provide. They have a relationshipwith you, and they expect you to be part of their spiritual and religious journey. You are the resource which uplifts them and brings them hope and encouragement.
So what’s keeping you from uplifting them and bringing them hope and encouragement via more products and services than the one you provide over the air for free?
Consider Casper, the buzzy startup that reinvented how America buys mattresses by bypassing the middlemen. They began with one mattress and this simple idea. But in time they realized something important: We are not a mattress company, we are a company which helps everyone in your household sleep restfully.
That simple redefinition of their business has led to a vast array of innovative products that are all on-brand yet all expand the brand into new and profitable categories.
For example, Casper began offering sheets and pillows. Then they launched a dog bed. And within the past year they opened “The Dreamery” in New York City. It’s a physical space where you can reserve a nook to nap in (on a Casper bed) for $25 per session. And don’t forget Casper Glow, a “magical light for better sleep.”
Just recently the company announced CBD Sleep Gummies – “prepare for drift off,” says the web page.
So Casper – the one-time mattress company – is now the company all about helping you sleep well. Which do you think has more upside in the marketplace? And, naturally, being the “all about sleeping well” company is only possible because of the huge customer base the company built with mattresses.
Now let’s get back to you. If you see your radio station as a place where listeners can turn to hear Christian music for free, then it’s time for you to expand your brand definition. What you have created is the base from which you can build, not the limits of your brand potential. You uplift and encourage listeners via radio right now. How ELSE can you do this…
- Via digital
- In the real world
And then, how can you provide such compelling new products and services that fans will actually pay for them.
Want new fans? Then give your listeners new things to love about you.
Mark Ramsey is president of Mark Ramsey Media, strategic research provider to many Christian music stations including K-LOVE, AIR1, KLTY/Dallas, WPOZ/Orlando, KTIS/Minneapolis, and many others. More information about his services is at http://mrmchristian.com. Sign up for FAITHBRIGHT, his weekly email of smart and actionable ideas for Christian broadcasters here: https://goo.gl/2hJMCG. Reach him at 858-485-6372 or firstname.lastname@example.org.