Christmas format audiences will grow slowly through December, peaking on December 24. On Christmas Eve last year, Nielsen says 28.4 million Americans tuned into a Christmas station in Nielsen’s 48 PPM markets alone. No daypart benefits more than nights.
Lincoln Financial Media has hired veteran radio manager Jim Prain as the new director of sales for its three-brand Miami cluster. It’s a return to radio for Prain, who most recently spent the past two years overseeing his Detroit power sports vehicle dealership. Prain says that experience as a small business owner gives him “a unique perspective on both sides of the marketing equation.” MORE
Clear Channel is hiring George Flora and Libia DeLucca as general sales managers for its Phoenix cluster. Flora will oversee sales on “News Talk 550” KFYI, “Business 1230” KOY and “Fox Sports 910” KGME. DeLucca will focus on sales at the cluster’s music FMs and she’ll also assist with brand manager duties at rhythmic AC “Eva 95.5” KYOT-FM. They’ll report to Phoenix VP of sales Linda Little. MORE
Longtime classic rock programmer and label promotions executive Charley Lake has announced he’ll retire from radio at the end of next month. Lake, whose previous programming stops have included Chicago, Phoenix and New Orleans, will retire from Greater Media’s WMGK, Philadelphia (102.9) where he’s worked since January 2007. MORE
Clear Channel has announced two new program directors in central Pennsylvania. In the Allentown-Bethlehem, PA market Steven Mills has been hired to program rock “95.1 ZZO” WZZO. He most recently was corporate director of programming for Pembrook Pines Media Group. And in the Reading, PA market Clear Channel promotes Craig Stevens to program director for classic hits “Y-102” WRFY-FM and “Oldies 1340” WRAW. He’s been part of the Clear Channel team in the area for more than 21 years. He’ll remain program director for “News Radio 790” WAEB and ops manager for the Allentown market. Mills and Stevens will both report to regional program manager Jeff Hurley.
Mobile audio news service Rivet News Radio has launched in Chicago with a group of 20 veteran journalists contributing reporting. The iPhone app, built by startup HearHere Radio, gives news enthusiasts the ability to find and follow the local, national and world news stories they want to hear. Heading its newsroom is former Tribune “Radio720” WGN, Chicago news director and ChicagoTribune.com senior producer Charlie Meyerson. MORE
Alpha Music Libraries, a collection of hundreds of production music libraries, is being made available to U.S. radio stations for the first time. Until now the collection has only been available to top advertising agencies, television production houses and major motion picture studios. SourceAudio has struck a deal with Premiere Networks to syndicate the service. MORE
A longtime Atlanta morning show host is calling it quits. It’s a similar story in Minneapolis where a 33-year run comes to a close. A husband-and-wife morning team takes a new job while a Chicago station makes a change in its programming office. Plus a “man about town” announces his retirement. A busy week for staffing changes. Catch up with all the week’s People Moves HERE.
The era of lavish holiday gifts for clients is certainly over in a day when there’s not much cash for perks. But experts say that doesn’t mean sales pros shouldn’t find some way to thank clients for their business in 2013. They point to the adage, “it’s not the gift but the thought that counts,” as a good rule of thumb. MORE
What’s your station’s stand on holiday gifts? Take the Inside Radio Reader’s Survey HERE.
At a time when 14 radio groups and 16 automakers have been sued by a so-called patent troll over alleged violations related to HD Radio, the House is advancing a patent reform bill that broadcasters are showing keen interest in. In a rare occurrence of overwhelming bipartisanship, the House vote was 325-91 yesterday, a sign of growing consensus that patent ligation has been increasingly abusive to companies and damaging to the economy. MORE
Ending an 18-year run at modern AC “Mix 94.7” KAMX, Austin, morning hosts JB Hager and Sandy McIlree have exited the Entercom station. VP of programming Cat Thomas says they had an “indelible impact” on the station, but a combination of declining rating and the expense of the show “no longer made economic sense.” KAMX was unable to reach a new contract deal with the hosts. Thomas says a new morning host has been hired, but they’re not yet ready to say who. Existing morning co-hosts Alex Franco and Sara Osburn will also remain with the station.
With 31 stations and growing, Lotus Communications is a 51 year-old company and one of radio’s largest privately-held groups. Created in 1962 by Howard Kalmenson with the purchase of KWKW (1330), one of the first stations to target Hispanics in Los Angeles, the Lotus portfolio is currently split nearly evenly between English- and Spanish-language stations. Now in its second generation of family ownership, Inside Radio recently caught up with SVP/Los Angeles market manager Jim Kalmenson. Read the Q&A HERE.
Ever since the split between Sean Hannity and Cumulus Media was set in motion, it was expected Clear Channel would make some changes to its talk portfolio to make room for the syndicated host in some of radio’s biggest markets. But the first two moves, in Los Angeles and San Francisco, suggest a bigger strategic change is afoot. In both cities there’s a commitment to live-and-local programming. MORE
A holiday gift has arrived in the form of a quarterly stock dividend for Entravision shareholders. The Hispanic broadcaster’s board has announced that it will begin paying a cash dividend each quarter. The year-end special dividend has become a bit of a holiday tradition for Entravision shareholders after the company made December payouts in 2011 and 2012. MORE
Clear Channel’s Chicago cluster has been hit with a proposed $20,000 fine by the FCC for violating equal employment opportunity (EEO) rules. The Media Bureau says the cluster failed to comply with the requirement to notify job referral organizations about 33 vacancies at the six stations between August 2009 and July 2011. The cluster also is said to have failed to have met the required EEO self-assessment. Clear Channel gets 30 days to either pay the fine or fight the penalty.
Clear Channel’s new partnership with CMT has netted the two companies their first exclusive video premiere. The eagerly anticipated clip for Kacey Musgraves’ controversial “Follow Your Arrow” track will premiere across CMT, Artists.CMT and the websites of Clear Channel country stations and iHeartRadio on Monday. MORE
A group of 11 evangelical Christian groups and churches has announced plans to run pro-reform ads on more than 30 religious radio stations in Texas and North Carolina. It will also air Spanish-language ads in California and Capitol Hill-targeted spots on Hubbard all-news WTOP-FM, Washington (103.5). Showing off radio’s targetability, the spots will be tailored with local pastors in each market.
Pandora is the top mobile music streaming app in terms of reach according to comScore. Its new ranking of the top apps during October puts Pandora at No. 4, reaching 48.2% of all iOS and Android-based smartphones. It only trailed Facebook, Google Play and Google Search, but ranked ahead of YouTube and Gmail. In terms of websites visited by smartphone users, comScore says Pandora.com was the seventh most-visited site reaching 48.5% of iOS and Android users.