Heavy Users

Over the years there has been considerable conversation about a radio station’s heavy users. Most of this discussion has been negative in nature. You know what I am referring to, the listener who calls 3-4 times every day, the man who wins lots of contests, and the woman who spends more time on your Facebook page than you do. It seems odd to me that we go to great lengths to convince listeners to get more involved with our station only to look down on them when they do? Could it be that we enjoy the thrill of the hunt more than the catch?

We need to understand two VERY important facts:

  1. Your listeners that are the most active with your radio station are also those who by far are more likely and willing to participate in the Nielsen ratings system than any other type of listener.
  2. Your heavy users, like these people we complain about, make up over 80% of your ratings! In some markets even more. Sometimes we see 90% of a stations ratings being made up of 10% of a station’s listening base.

We need to adjust our view of how we treat and interact with our listeners. Our focus to gain new listeners cannot come at the expense of how we nurture our existing ones. We need to make our listener’s experience with our radio stations a very positive one, no matter what listening level they fit in. From the front desk to the biggest promotion, the listener needs to feel special. Personalities that don’t enjoy interacting with their listeners are like councilors who don’t like being around people.


Brian Wright is a 30 year radio veteran who has successfully served many companies over the years as Program Director, Operations Manger and VP of programming. 

After many years of success working for individual radio stations and clusters, Brian Joined one of the most trusted consulting firms in the country, Audience Development Group. 

For the last 15 years Wright has enjoyed building alliances with scores of stations in the US & Canada helping them grow in ratings and revenue.

Related posts