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<font size="4" style="line-height:120%">Ford pushes dealer ad dollars into digital.</font>

Ford pushes dealer ad dollars into digital.

Radio stations will need to lead with digital like never before when they make a pitch to Ford Motor Company local dealers in the coming months. That’s because starting in July, Ford will require its 3,200 dealers to spend half of their co-op dollars in digital. That’s up from the 25% requirement the automaker has already dictated.


Nielsen: Website ads rank first among car buyers.

There’s a good reason why Ford and other automakers are shifting large portions of their ad budgets to digital media. When thinking about buying a new set of wheels, more consumers say automotive advertising is helpful on websites than on any other media platform.


FCC puts its media review proposals on the table.

Clocking in at 236 pages, the 2014 quadrennial ownership review is now in black and white. There was little doubt the FCC would stick to its decision to keep the current radio ownership limits in place, and the agency lives up to expectations saying the current rules are “necessary to promote competition.” FCC does seek to fine-tune a rule governing market definition changes. MORE


Two new phones set one-day record for NextRadio.

The buzz about NextRadio was undeniably positive at last week’s NAB Show in Las Vegas. It almost overshadowed the release of two new popular smartphones that Sprint put on sale last weekend, both of which are NextRadio-enabled. MORE


FCC’s Clyburn “impressed” by NextRadio.

It looks like the NextRadio booth was a must-see for the FCC at last week’s NAB Show. Commissioner Mignon Clyburn says like chairman Tom Wheeler and commissioner Michael O’Rielly, she too had a chance to see firsthand the radio industry’s FM entry onto Sprint phones. Clyburn says she was “impressed” by NextRadio, calling it “fascinating” and “consumer friendly” and deeming it one of the “innovative developments” in broadcast technology today. MORE


Conclave director Bob Shannon resigns.

Citing health reasons, Bob Shannon has resigned as executive director of the Conclave. A replacement has not been named. A veteran broadcaster, Shannon became the non-profit’s second-ever executive director, succeeding co-founder Tom Kay who announced his retirement in September 2012. Shannon’s sudden departure comes as the organization appears to be re-thinking its future. MORE


Delayed 2013 results show SBS grew revenue by 10%.

The news came later than expected, but it was positive nevertheless. Spanish Broadcasting System’s radio revenue grew 2% during the fourth quarter to $32.9 million. For the year, SBS says radio revenue jumped 10%. So did company revenue overall, hitting $153.8 million with its Mega TV division also posting double-digit increases last year. MORE


Nielsen finds more cost-savings in Arbitron rollup.

The rolling of Arbitron into Nielsen will bring more than twice as much cost savings as originally announced in December. Nielsen now says it expects to slice $45 million out of radio operations compared to the $20 million in “productivity gains” it previously told shareholders to expect. MORE


Guys like ‘test-driving’ Sirius XM.

More than half of drivers say they first experience new technology in a rental car – it’s why iBiquity has struck deals to get HD Radio onto rental lots. A new survey done by the parent company of Alamo, National and Enterprise Rent-A-Car finds drivers are more interested in brains (new tech features) than brawn (sports cars, convertibles) when they rent a car. The survey shows satellite radio appeals to men more than women, 17% versus 11%, but having a Bluetooth dashboard connection and navigation system are more than three times as desirable. MORE


Move over Rover, and let Siri take over.

Drivers accustomed to using Apple’s Siri voice control to launch a range of actions on their smartphone will be able to do the same activities via voice commands in the car this summer. With a firmware update, users of five Pioneer 2014 NEX in-dash, after-market multimedia receivers will have Apple CarPlay compatibility. Consumers with iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and iPhone 5 will be able to use Siri in the car to make and receive calls, compose and respond to text messages, use Apple Maps for navigation and listen to their music, podcasts and iTunes Radio.


Social Media is so last decade.

The number of students who maintain a profile on a social networking site like Facebook has decreased by nearly 40% in the last five years, according to a new report from Project Tomorrow, an education data organization. This year only 30% of middle school students (grades 6-8) and 39% of high school students (grades 9-10) told researchers they were actively using a site. Instead, social media apps such as Instagram, Snapchat and Vine are becoming more popular.


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