Despite the failure of previous efforts to change federal copyright laws and require royalties to be paid on AM/FM airplay, the music industry is giving it another try. Supports of a radio royalty reintroduced the American Music Fairness or AMFM Act in the Congress on Thursday. If passed, it would require broadcasters to pay up. Read moreMusic Industry Tries Again, Hoping New Congress Will Solve Old Radio Royalty Standoff.

Despite consumer spending under pressure, record low car sales and a weaker ad market, SiriusXM says its revenue held steady in fourth quarter at $2.28 billion. Total revenue for 2022 grew 4% year-over-year to $9 billion. But with record low car sales and “substantial uncertainty” in the advertising market, investors reacted by sending shares of “SIRI” down 10% in Thursday trading to close at $5.30 in a stock market that rose 1.47%. Read moreDownbeat Financial Forecast Sends Shares Of SiriusXM Down 10%.

Victor Giacomelli has been recruited as VP of Sales and Travia Charmont as Sales Manager of iHeartMedia New York’s urban contemporary “Power 105.1” WWPR and Black Information Network affiliate WWRL, responsible for overseeing the sales teams of both stations, including sales growth and strategic partnerships. Both hires come from Audacy and have previous experience at MediaCo’s crosstown rhythmic CHR “Hot 97” WQHT and urban contemporary WBLS New York. Read moreGiacomelli And Travia Charmont To Oversee Sales At iHeart’s WWPR/WWRL New York.

The idea of doing away with noncompete clauses likely has the backing of employees while management has reason to defend their use. The Federal Trade Commission will hear both sides of the argument at a Feb. 16 three-hour forum, followed by an opportunity for public comment. Meanwhile, the NAB says it is “carefully reviewing” the proposal and hasn’t taken a side. Read moreWhat Do You Think About Noncompetes? The FTC Wants To Hear It.

Alpha Media has split up the “San Antonio’s Sports Star” KZDC (1250) – KTFM (94.1) simulcast and launched a separate ESPN station on KZDC. Branded as “ESPN 1250,” the new station has a national focus with ESPN’s national shows throughout the day along with the network’s NBA, MLB and NFL play-by-play coverage. The break-up makes “94.1 San Antonio’s Sports Star” KTFM the “Live & Local” home for San Antonio sports fans. Read moreAlpha Splits ‘San Antonio’s Sports Star’ Simulcast To Launch ‘ESPN 1250.’

Mets broadcaster Howie Rose reveals bladder cancer diagnosis… The “Titanium Awards” are presented to artists who have one billion total audience spins across iHeartRadio stations last year… Brooklyn Nets radio announcer Chris Carrino is recognized with “The Values of the Game Award.” … The SBE seeks candidates for officers and directors to the national Board of Directors. Walnut Media introduced “Bluffs Country 106.5” KXCB (1420) Omaha, NE, on Wednesday. Read moreNews Bites: Howie Rose, ‘iHeartRadio Titanium Awards,’ Chris Carrino, SBE, ‘Bluffs Country.’

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While the ranking of radio formats with the most stations in the U.S. shows little change month to month, the growth trends are where the action is in Inside Radio’s Format Counts monitor for January. Overall, country keeps its lead with 12.4% of U.S. stations followed by news/talk at 11.5%. Fourth-ranked contemporary Christian shows the biggest gain, adding 21 stations year-over-year, while top 40, ranking 10th, loses the most stations. Read moreMore Stations For Contemporary Christian And Classic Hits, Fewer For Top 40 And News/Talk.

Skyview Networks’ IT teams and third-party forensic experts continue to work on resolving a cyberattack that has disrupted several of the company’s internal systems. What the syndication company has called “an unauthorized access to its IT environment” that began early Monday morning continues to curtail the flow of Skyview-distributed programming and spots. Read moreSkyview Expects ‘Continued Disruption’ From Cyberattack For Rest Of The Week.

The majority of automakers will sit out this year’s Super Bowl, citing economic concerns and supply issues. “Super Bowl ads aren't needed to drum up interest for vehicles that are still in short supply,” Edmunds’ Jessica Caldwell says. This may provide an opportunity for radio sellers, who can offer much more than a fleeting 30-second TV commercial that costs millions. Read moreRadio Can Provide Opportunity For Automakers Sitting Out This Year’s Super Bowl.

While radio has tried nearly every way to sell sponsorships, including an advertiser's name in the branding of the station itself has always seemed to be off-limits. Until now. Max Media's WVSP Yorktown, VA, in the Norfolk-Virginia Beach market, rebranded earlier this week from “ESPN 94.1” to “Priority Auto Sports Radio 94.1,” with the local car dealer featured prominently in all station IDs every hour. Read moreWhat's In A Name? For Newly-Branded Sports Station, It's A Sponsor.

It appears the New York Mets have settled on their radio broadcast team as Keith Raad has reportedly been recruited as Wayne Randazzo’s successor to serve as a partner to play-by-play announcer Howie Rose. Additionally, the franchise is expected to announce that Patrick McCarthy, who is the son of former Mets announcer Tom McCarthy, will serve as pregame and postgame host for games carried on Audacy news WCBS-AM. Read moreReport: Keith Raad And Patrick McCarthy Join Howie Rose On NY Mets Radio Team.

Thursday, February 02, 2023

While radio has tried nearly every way to sell sponsorships, including an advertiser's name in the branding of the station itself has always seemed to be off-limits. Until now. Max Media's WVSP Yorktown, VA, in the Norfolk-Virginia Beach market, rebranded earlier this week from “ESPN 94.1” to “Priority Auto Sports Radio 94.1,” with the local car dealer featured prominently in all station IDs every hour. Read moreWhat's In A Name? For Newly-Branded Sports Station, It's A Sponsor.

It appears the New York Mets have settled on their radio broadcast team as Keith Raad has reportedly been recruited as Wayne Randazzo’s successor to serve as a partner to play-by-play announcer Howie Rose. Additionally, the franchise is expected to announce that Patrick McCarthy, who is the son of former Mets announcer Tom McCarthy, will serve as pregame and postgame host for games carried on Audacy news WCBS-AM. Read moreReport: Keith Raad And Patrick McCarthy Join Howie Rose On NY Mets Radio Team.

The Federal Communications Commission issued 21 notices to landlords of alleged pirate radio operators during all of 2022 and it expects to step up its enforcement in the coming months. Its latest warning is not going to one of the hot spots for pirates, like New York or San Francisco, but rather Tulsa, OK. The owner could face fines totaling more than $2.3 million. The FCC plans to step up pirate enforcement sweeps this year. Read moreProperty Owner Warned As FCC Tracks Rare Midwest Pirate To Tulsa.

Audacy classic hits WCBS-FM New York has recruited a second personality with Big Apple radio experience for its post-Scott Shannon plans for morning drive. Annie Leamy will join John Foxx as morning co-host when “Foxx & Annie In The Morning” debuts on Monday, Feb. 13. Leamy spent six years at the former WPLJ before hosting mornings at iHeartMedia AC “Q92” WRNQ Poughkeepsie since January 2020. Read moreWCBS-FM New York’s ‘Foxx & Annie In The Morning’ To Debut Feb. 13.

When the confetti falls on New Year’s Eve, the move into first quarter brings a typical slowdown in the ad market. It also means a decline in CPMs. History repeated last month as Libsyn’s AdvertiseCast says the average CPM rate for a 60-second podcast ad fell to $22.28. That was down 12% compared to a typical CPM of $25.40 a year earlier. Dave Hanley, Chief Revenue Officer at AdvertiseCast, says the lower CPM average is “due to the typical seasonality which follows the holiday season.” Read moreThe Average Podcast CPM Dropped 12% In January.

Civic Media has been on a buying spree during the past year throughout Wisconsin and its latest deal will give it a second AM in the Madison market. It already has a pending deal to buy another AM there. Also this week, a Reno FM is sold. And a pair of religious broadcasters make some engineering moves as part of FM translator sales. Check out the details in this week’s Deal Digest. Read moreDeal Digest: Civic Media Buys Second Madison Station.

Wednesday, February 01, 2023

Urban One first tipped two weeks ago that it planned to do more in the podcast space when it announced it was working with Sounder on an initiative aimed at improving brand safety. Now it is formally cutting the ribbon on the Urban One Podcast Network. The move expands on the radio broadcaster’s audio portfolio as it looks to connect with listeners of color and broaden its appeal to advertisers who want to connect with the Black community. Read moreUrban One Podcast Network Launches With Ten Original Shows.

Station owner and producer of audio and video content Estrella Media has tapped Gerardo Vergaza as Director, and Alejandro Garza Producer, for its Estrella Media Music Entertainment division. Vergara will oversee managing the artist roster, catalog and business opportunities, along with new artist signings and development, while Garza will oversee music production and publishing and be an in-house music producer for EMME. Read moreEstrella Media Strengthens Music Division With Pair Of New Hires.

SoundCloud and Pandora have renewed their ad sales agreement that was first formed in 2019. SXM Media, the combined sales group of SiriusXM and Pandora, will continue to serve as the exclusive advertising representative for SoundCloud into 2024. The extension allows brands and advertisers to continue purchasing SoundCloud’s U.S. advertising inventory through SXM Media. Read moreSXM Media Continues As Ad Rep For SoundCloud Under Renewed Agreement.

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The Conference Board Leading Economic Index has predicted economic downturns in the U.S. with a 100% hit rate – and it is predicting one for 2023. But instead of triggering an advertising downturn, could a recession actually cause an advertising boom? The notion is based on the belief that the pandemic taught businesses that advertising in tough times produces results. Read moreAn Advertising Boom In A Recession? It May Not Be As Far-Fetched As You Think.

Brian Wieser, the well-regarded former media analyst who just left ad agency giant GroupM, is launching his own media and advertising consultancy for investors, private equity firms and other industry groups. Focused on the intersection of advertising and Wall Street, the aptly named Madison and Wall will also include a Substack newsletter from Wieser, whose weekly newsletters from GroupM and research notes from Pivotal Research were widely read. Read moreFormer Agency Exec And Media Analyst Brian Wieser Opens ‘Madison and Wall’ Consultancy.

A new report shows Black podcast listenership grew to 43% in 2022, an increase of seven points from a year earlier. The Black Podcast Listener Report – based on data collected by Edison Research in partnership with SXM Media and Mindshare – shows Black listeners have closed the gap and are now outpacing the total U.S. population in podcast consumption. And Black podcast listeners spend five hours a week on average listening to podcasts. Read moreClosing The Gap, Black Listeners Now Outpace Population Overall For Podcast Listening.

Any hesitancy that was in the radio deal market due to the pandemic disappeared last year as the number of stations that traded grew by 16%. BIA says 486 stations changed hands last year. And the overall radio deal volume rose to $295.2 million last year, a 64% increase from what was spent during 2021. But BIA says the deal market has been “sluggish” for the past two years. Read moreBIA: Radio Deal Volume Jumped 64% In 2022 As More Stations Were Sold.

For the past several years Wall Street has rewarded Spotify for its mix of streaming music and podcasting. Last week’s layoffs and strategy shift may have cast doubt on that for investors, but it’s a different podcast combination that Conal Byrne says remains strong. The CEO of the iHeartMedia Digital Audio Group says “there are few stronger” than podcasting combined with broadcast radio. Read moreiHeart’s Conal Byrne Pitches The Podcast Plus Broadcast Bundle.

News/talk WABC New York owner Red Apple Media's syndication arm, Red Apple Audio Networks, has announced the addition of 17 more affiliate stations carrying programming originated on WABC. Among the 10 stations adding “The Larry Kudlow Show” or “The Larry Kudlow Riff” is Cumulus Media's WLS-AM Chicago, with Rubin Broadcasting's KTOX Los Angeles one of two new affiliates for “The Rudy Giuliani Show.” Read moreRed Apple Adds New Affiliates For WABC Programming.

Ford Motor has cut prices of its electric crossover SUV Mustang Mach-E by as much as $5,900 per vehicle… CVS plans to reduce pharmacy hours in roughly two-thirds of its drugstores in March. Walmart in the same month will begin closing its pharmacies at 7 PM instead of 9 PM at most of its stores… McDonald’s has begun testing lids in some cities that do not require straws…. Dollar General has hit a milepost, recently opening its 19,000th store, in Joplin, MO. Read moreAd Insider: Ford, CVS, Walmart, McDonald’s, Dollar General.

Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Following an incident at Skyview Networks which disrupted the transmission of CBS News Radio network programming to affiliates on Monday, the company explained the situation in a statement, saying that it “experienced unauthorized access to its IT environment, resulting in interrupted technical services.” As a result of the breach, Skyview was not able to deliver the 8am Eastern top-of-hour “CBS World News Roundup” newscast along with other programming to affiliate stations. Read moreSkyview: 'Efforts Are Fully Underway' In Investigation Of Monday's Security Breach.

Nielsen predecessor Arbitron and Edison Research partnered on the first Infinite Dial study in 1998. Decades later the two companies are once again collaborating as Nielsen will market two Edison products to ad agencies: Share Of Ear and Podcast Metrics. In Tuesday’s announcement, Nielsen said it is “committed to providing a complete view of the unduplicated audience across multiple platforms.” Read moreNielsen To Market Two Edison Research Services To Ad Agencies.

Spotify CEO Daniel Ek told investors Tuesday that he “probably got a little carried away and over-invested” in new businesses, including podcasting, during the past few years and that led to last week’s announcement that the company would cut six percent of its workforce across all divisions. But Ek also said he does not believe that the investments were “a mistake” and during a call with analysts said it does not mean Spotify is changing its strategy. Read moreSpotify Says It May’ve Gotten ‘Carried Away’ With Spending, But Its Strategy Remains The Same.

The branding of Los Angeles-based podcast creator LAist Studios is spreading to its broadcast radio signal. Southern California Public Radio is rebranding KPCC as “LAist 89.3” in the coming weeks as it unifies its digital and broadcast properties under a single identity. In addition to its podcast studio, SCPR also has the online news site LAist.com and it uses the branding for its social media and in-person programming and events. Read moreTo Unify Multimedia Platforms, L.A. Pubcaster KPCC Rebrands As LAist.

Even though it's believed that he was never offered the position, Christopher “Mad Dog” Russo says he will not return to broadcast radio as a replacement for Michael Kay at “ESPN New York 98.7” WEPN. The speculation is that Kay will retire at the end of his current contract. If so, he will not be replaced by Russo. “I’m not going to leave Sirius, let’s put it that way,” Russo said in response to the rumor. Read more‘Mad Dog’ Denies Rumors Of His Return To Broadcast Radio Via WEPN New York.

Vertione has made several management changes in recent months including the rise of President Ryan Steelberg to Chief Executive as brother and CEO Chad Steelberg transitioned to a new role as Chairman on Jan. 1. Now those organizational changes will move beyond the C-suite. Veritone will undertake a number of actions to reflect its new CEO’s focus, including a “measured reduction” in the company’s headcount and a spin-off its energy-focused business. Read moreVeritone Will Cut Staff And Spin Off Energy Business As It Reprioritizes AI Future.

The NAB will host a webinar tomorrow on recruitment strategies for radio and TV stations looking to hire sales and programming talent. “Retooling Your Recruiting Strategy for 2023” will be hosted by NAB VP/Member Experience Bradford Caldwell, who will be joined by Michelle Duke, NAB Chief Diversity Officer and President of the NAB Leadership Foundation. Read moreNAB To Host Webinar On Sales And Programming Recruitment Strategies.

Programmatic was once a dirty work among content providers, uttered in the same breath as words like remnant. But powered by a combination of new ad tech and marketers’ desire to get their best return, results of a new survey of buyers by Acast points to a “rebirth” of programmatic without much of the negatives. The sales tool’s growth comes as Acast finds two-thirds of U.S. marketers expect to increase their spending on podcasts. And 83% of existing users plan to spend more. Read moreMarketers Predict Programmatic Ad Spend in Podcasts to Triple by 2027, Acast Study Finds.

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Note to online universities putting most of their ad dollars in TV and digital or social media: you're missing a significant number of potential students listening to AM/FM radio. An analysis of research from MARU/Matchbox and Nielsen shows radio has a 38% advantage over TV when reaching online universities' target demo of adults 18-49. Adding radio to the mix for online schools ups the reach of this audience by 100% or more. Read moreToday's Lesson: AM/FM Radio Effectively Reaches Prospective Online University Students.

The success of Netflix's “Wednesday” – more specifically, of the main character's dance that has trended on TikTok – has propelled a 12-year-old Lady Gaga track up both Mediabase's CHR and hot AC airplay charts. It's not the only song from the past to re-emerge on pop radio, however, as at least three others have impacted at multiple formats over the past six months. Read moreTikTok And TV Syncs Are Giving More Songs A Second Act At CHR.

To help radio and television owners, operators, and managers to develop sales compensation packages that attract and retain the best candidates, Media Staffing Network is conducting the 2023 Radio & TV Sales Compensation Study with sponsors Inside Radio and Spots & Dots. Survey results will be revealed during a special session at the NAB Show, April 16 in Las Vegas, and then become available for download at MSN’s website. The survey runs now through Feb. 10 and can be taken HERE. Read moreMSN Conducting 2023 Radio & TV Sales Compensation Study With Inside Radio.

Urban One is relaunching its iONE Digital brand following its recent rebranding from Interactive One. The digital media division of the African American media specialist says it plans to “integrate and maximize synergies” across its digital portfolio of publishing brands. Urban One says iONE Digital reaches 24 million unique monthly visitors and that its relaunch “brings a fresh perspective and bold storytelling” while continuing to illuminate Black voices. Read moreTo Maximize Synergies, Urban One Relaunches iONE Digital Brand.

In a filing that uses the word “denies” 21 times, Cumulus Media has responded to a wrongful termination suit brought by a former Director of Sales at its Worcester, MA cluster. The five-page filing says the broadcaster “denies each and every allegation in the complaint” except for matter-of-record facts like Gerald Humphrey was a Cumulus employee. But when it comes to a bevy of discrimination allegations Humphrey made in a suit filed last October, Cumulus denies them all. Read moreCumulus Denies Allegations In Discrimination Suit Filed By Former DOS.

NBCUniversal has been marketing Peacock on the radio sporadically – and at a low weight – since July 2020, shortly after it became the last of the major 2020 streaming services to launch. For example, Peacock ranked No. 44 in the last week of December 2022 and barely dented the top 100 the week before. But now the streamer has significantly increased its radio presence, landing in the top 10 radio advertisers with 25,584 spots for the week of Jan. 23-29. Read moreNBCUniversal Ratchets Up Radio To Market Peacock Streaming Service.

The owners of religious KOKS Poplar Bluff, MO (89.5) have been awarded a new license, despite what the Federal Communications Commission says is a “long history of rule violations” that began when the station signed-on in 1989 and has continued to varying degrees for nearly 30 years. But KOKS has new owners now, and the FCC likes what it has seen during its “probationary” period. That means a potential death sentence for the station has been averted. Read moreFCC Put Missouri Station On Probation. Despite Progress, That Will Continue Through 2025.

With surveys showing more podcasters are producing video content, Libsyn is making it easier for shows that use its hosting platform to manage and track consumption on YouTube. It has struck a deal with the Google-owned service to access real-time data. With the link, Lisbyn says podcasters, as well as brands and advertisers, will have streamlined access to insights on podcast downloads from YouTube. Read moreLibsyn Announces Partnership with YouTube To Deliver Real-Time Metrics For Podcasts.

Monday, January 30, 2023

Because of what the Media Bureau says are “ongoing technical issues,” the FCC has further extended the deadline for stations to post files in the Commission’s Online Public Inspection File system. The agency says documents that were to have been filed since Jan.1 must now be filed no later than Feb. 28. The Bureau says extending the deadlines “will not significantly impact” the review of a licensee’s compliance with the Commission’s rules. Read moreStations Get More Time To Post Documents In Their Online Public Inspection File.

iHeartMedia scores big in Miami, securing broadcast rights to the Dolphins beginning with the 2023 NFL season. Live game-day broadcasts will air on classic rock “Big 105.9” WBGG and “Fox Sports 940” WINZ with plans to expand the affiliate base in Florida, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico. iHeart held rights to the Dolphins game-day broadcasts from 2010-2015. The franchise has called WQAM home since 2016. Read moreWBGG/WINZ Miami To Carry Dolphins Games Under New Multi-Year Deal.

In the days since Spotify announced it was cutting six percent of its workforce and scaling back its podcast efforts, the company’s stock price has jumped three percent. Tomorrow will be a pivotal day for management as it goes before Wall Street to deliver its year-end results for 2022. But the focus is more likely to be on where Spotify is going than where it has been, with questions remaining about how the company plans to put to use the billions of dollars of podcast assets it has collected during the past few years. Read moreSpotify Goes Before Investors Tuesday. One Analyst Expects Fewer Subscribers And Ad Dollars.

Former EMI Nashville Midwest Director of Regional Promotion Jackie Stevens returns to Westwood One as Executive Producer of the syndicated “Nights with Elaina” and “With Elaina” shows, effective immediately. During Stevens’ previous stint with Westwood One, she helped launch six shows including “The Big Time With Whitney Allen,” eventually becoming EP and MD for “The Big Time.” She had been with EMI since 2019, exiting Friday. Read moreJackie Stevens Named EP for ‘Nights With Elaina,’ & ‘With Elaina.’

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Along with connected TV, retail media is one of the hottest channels in advertising. According to eMarketer, U.S. digital retail media ad spending was forecast to grow 31.4% to $40.81 billion in 2022. And by 2024, the total will reach $61.15 billion. Large scale audio players can get in on the retail media network action by integrating their own first party data, in a privacy-protected way, with that of the retailer to help advertisers find their audiences. Read moreRetail Media Is Exploding. Can Radio Get In On The Action?

WCBS-FM New York begins airing a 15-minute segment from news sister WCBS-AM from 5:30-5:45am… WLS Chicago adds “The Larry Kudlow Show” to Sunday evenings… Brandon Smiley, the son of Reach Media-syndicated host Rickey Smiley, has died at the age of 32… Edison Research will release a pair of two podcast-focused research studies… Ideastream Public Media has received a $1 million gift. Read moreNews Bites: WCBS-AM/FM, ‘The Larry Kudlow Show,’ Brandon Smiley, Edison Research, Ideastream Public Media.

Even before many of its stations’ annual switch to holiday music, 2022 was a very good year for adult contemporary. It's also been good for the sports, classic hits and adult hits formats, as all of the above saw steady share growth in persons 6+ from 2020. Based on Inside Radio's monthly analysis of Nielsen's PPM share data, AC, while remaining the second-ranked format 6+, gained half a share point from 2020, while top-ranked news/talk's shares have steadily declined. Read moreFormat Report Card, 2022: AC And Sports Continue Growing, While News/Talk And CHR Steadily Decline.