How many times have you heard it: "Adapt or die"? It sounds heartless, yet it poses the essential question of radio's survival. Is radio dying? Nope, but it is going somewhere else, and not by itself.
Take the recurring news of disappearing stations, like this post from the Dialy Iowan, College Radio Fights for Recognition, Funding. To summarize the article, it provides some color about what is happening at many campuses -- funding is being cut for the radio station or that the school is selling off its terrestrial radio frequency. In these economic times, it must be difficult for an administration to pass up millions of dollars for an FM station that continues to be worth less as Internet radio starts to become dominant.
So, that raises the question of whether a school that agrees to sell off its terrestrial radio signal can actually support a broadcast journalism program. Well, it's not only schools. All media are facing similar challenges and looking for the best ways to respond.
Throughout the industry, you can see signs of a growing creative trend: integrated media. For example, one of our newest member schools, Lehman College, has integrated its Internet radio station presence into its online newspaper, the Bronx Journal. Media integration such as this was a persistent theme we heard at the CMA conference in New York last month.
We are also seeing mixed modalities in the mainstream media. None other than the esteemed Wall Street Journal has integrated video into its site. The Boston Globe has its Globe 10.0 video. Sports radio powerhouse WEEI in Boston now has both an online presence and video on its site.
We first wrote about this in our white paper, The New Breed of College (and High School) Internet Radio-Surviving the Dinosaur. It is more apparent now. Journalism isn't dying, either. It is transitioning to a new paradigm as radio becomes a big part of it. With evolving convergence occurring on the Internet, a college, university or high school can reach a much larger audience than it has in the past, using a truly integrated media strategy. It is the path to the future. Embrace it.
The reach of Backbone Internet radio stations keeps growing, and today there's another way for your audience to find yours. Yesterday, TuneIn announced that their powerful "TuneIn application will be featured prominently in T-Mobile's Music Hub, which is part of the T-Mobile(R) Mall, a digital storefront available as a free download in Google Play."
As Mark Ramsey said in a recent blog, Is Radio Losing "The War of Attention":
Radio’s challenge is not to adapt its legacy technology for new devices, since this requires consumers to demand those devices because of that technology (look how well that worked for those HD table radios). Its challenge is to create content that demands attention and nurture that attention across platforms and devices where consumers already spend their time.
With over 150 different devices, including new car radios, carrying your station via TuneIn, its small wonder that Internet radio listenership is growing at a rate of 50% annually. Clearly, they will be able to find you, now it's your challenge to hold their attention and keep them listening. And the only way you can do that is with compelling content. Be different and be heard.