Jan 31-Feb 17 “Winterlude”: Ottawa, ON. Annual celebration of Canadian winter. Call 613-239-5000 or 800-465-1867. Web www.capcan.ca/winterlude.
Feb 1-28 “Therapeutic Recreation Month”: see www.canadian-tr.org.
Feb 1-28 “International Boost Self-Esteem Month”: Focus on the importance of nurturing and cultivating self-esteem to beat the winter blahs. Call Valla Dana Fotiades 863-875-0759. email email@example.com.
Feb 1-28 “Junior Achievement Month”: Junior Achievement students in Canada participate in experiential learning programs to discover free enterprise, understand business and economics and develop their entrepreneurial and leadership skills. See www.jacan.org.
Feb 1-28 “National Heart & Stroke Month”: see www.heartandstroke.ca
Feb 1-28 “National Black History Month”: see Citizenship & Immigration Canadawww.cic.gc.ca/english/multiculturalism/black/index.asp
Feb 1-28 “National Psychology Month”: see www.cpa.ca
Feb 1-28 “Plant the Seeds of Greatness Month”: If you are unhappy with your career, use these next 28 days to put to use your own unique prosperity and plant the seeds for your new career. Call Lorrie Walters Marsiglio 630-584-9368.
Feb 1-28 “Return Shopping Carts to the Supermarket Month”: An opportunity to return stolen shopping carts, milk crates, bread trays and ice cream baskets to supermarkets and avoid the increased food prices that these thefts cause. Call Anthony A. Dinolfo 815-463-9136.
Feb 1-28 “Spunky Old Broads Month”: A celebration for all women over 50 who are interested in living a regret-free life. Call Gayle Carson 305-534-8846, email Gayle@spunkyoldbroad.com. See www.spunkyoldbroad.com.
Feb 1 “Working Naked Day”: A day for all those who are working from home “naked” – stripped of the resources that millions take for granted in the traditional corporate workplace.
Feb 2 “Groundhog Day” If the groundhog comes out of his hole and sees his shadow, we’re in for another 6 weeks of winter. Call Woodstock, the town where Bill Murray filmed Groundhog Day 815-338-2436 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Also check out Wiarton Willie – Canada’s leading weather prognosticator Phone:(519) 534-1400 or e-mail email@example.com.
Feb 2 “Groundhog Job Shadow Day”: Students spend part of the day in the workplace “shadowing” an employee as he or she goes through a normal day on the job. Call 1-800-373-3174 for a kit. Email firstname.lastname@example.org. See www.jobshadow.org.
Feb 2 “Safer Internet Day”: To promote safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially among children. See www.saferinternet.org.
Feb 2 “Super Bowl XLVIII”: Metlife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ. Call 212-450-2000. Web: www.nfl.com.
Feb 2-8 “Eating Disorder Awareness Week”: see www.nedic.ca
Feb 2-8 “White Cane Week”: For info see Canadian Council for the Blind www.ccbnational.net
Feb 3-7 “International Networking Week”: To celebrate the key role that networking plays in the development and success of businesses around the world. Call Ivan Misner, PhD 1-800-825-8286 or email email@example.com.
Feb 3-9 “Dump your Significant Jerk Week”: With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, there’s no time to waste. If you’re in a loser relationship, it’s time to cut the cord. So call Marcus P. Meleton for ideas at 949-413-3052, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Web www.sharkbaitpress.com.
Feb 4 “Happy Birthday Facebook”: Mark Zuckerburg launched the social networking site on this day in 2004.
Feb 4 “International World Cancer Day”: see www.uicc.org.
Feb 7-16 “Ontario Winter Carnival Bon Soo”: Sault Ste. Marie, ON. One of Canada’s largest winter carnivals. Call Donna Gregg 866-899-1607, email email@example.com or see www.bonsoo.on.ca.
Feb 7-23 “2014 Winter Olympics”: Taking place in Sochi, Russia. See www.sochi2014.com.
Feb 8 “Laugh and Get Rich Day”: When people laugh they are more effective, stay in the same job longer and tend to remember things better, according to Rick Segel. Phone: 781-272-9995 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Feb 9 “Beatles Appear on the Ed Sullivan Show – 50th Anniversary”: British pop phenomenon the Beatles began the “British Invasion” of America with their appearance on America’s top television variety show. They performed 5 songs before a screaming audience of 728. Estimated viewership was 73 million people.
Feb 9 “Man Day”: A day for celebration by friends, family and associates of the men of the world. Annually, the Sunday before Valentine’s Day. Call C. Daniel Rhodes 205-908-6781, email email@example.com.
Feb 10 “Family Day in BC”: statutory holiday in BC.
Feb 10-16 “International Flirting Week”: Recognizing the role it plays in the lives of singles seeking a mate, couples looking to sustain their love and those simply exchanging a playful glance with a stranger, acquaintance or colleague. Call Robin Newman 516-773-0911, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Web www.lovecoach.com.
Feb 10-16 “Random Acts of Kindness Week”: A week to raise awareness about kindness and invite people to give and receive kindness daily. Call 1-800-660-2811 or email email@example.com.
Feb 11 “New Mexico: Extraterrestrial Culture Day”: A day to celebrate and honour all past, present and future extraterrestrial visitors in ways to enhance relationships among all citizens of the cosmos, known and unknown. Annually the second Thursday of February in New Mexico.
Feb 12 “Darwin Day”: International celebration of science and humanity. Call the Institute for Humanist Studies 518-432-7820. email firstname.lastname@example.org. see www.humaniststudies.org.
Feb 14 “Valentine’s Day”: An occasion for the exchange of gifts and greeting cards with affectionate or humorous messages.
Feb 15 “International Childhood Cancer Day”: see www.icccpo.org.
Feb 15 “National Flag Day of Canada”: see www.pch.gc.ca/special/flag-drapeau/index_e.cfm
Feb 16-22 “National Scout-Guide Week”: see www.scouts.ca or www.girlguides.ca.
Feb 17 “Family Day (AB, ON, SK)”: Annually, the 3rd Monday in February.
Feb 20 “Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day”: The engineering community is asked to reach more than one million girls and encourage them to pursue the fields that lead to engineering careers. Call Natl Engineers Week Headquarters 703-684-2852. email email@example.com. web www.eweek.org/site/news/eweek/girlsday.shtml.
Feb 22 “World Thinking Day/Founders Day”: Birth date of both Lord and Lady Baden-Powell, founders of Boy Scouts and Girl Guides. Don’t be surprised to see members of these organizations in uniform today at school and work. See www.scouts.ca or www.girlguides.ca.
Feb 22 “Open That Bottle Night”: A night to finally drink that bottle of wine that you’ve been saving for a special occasion that never seems to come. Email Dorothy J. Gaiter and John Brecher of the Wall Street Journal at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Feb 26 “Pink Shirt Day”: A day of anti-bullying. See www.pinkshirtday.ca.
Over the years I’ve been asked about an article I did in ‘07 about effective ways to communicate with the listener. I had another request for it only a few days ago. I certainly don’t mind emailing it to those who ask, but at the same time I suppose I can just run it again as I don’t believe it sounds overly dated. Hopefully you won’t either. Your feedback, as always, is encouraged and appreciated.
Greg Diamond – ByrnesMedia
In my travels I have heard managers and PD’s stressing content… content, content, content! However, I haven’t heard much in the way of relevant content.
Early in my career, while still an announcer, I had someone explain to me the evolution of a successful performer. We all start out as “announcers” (talking at the listener) and over time our talent and drive may or may not allow us to attain the ultimate goal of “communicator” (talking with the listener).
What does an effective “communicator” have that the others don’t? He has the ability to engage the listener at the subconscious level.
For a number of years I have espoused this theory almost religiously and anyone who has ever had me do an aircheck of their show will attest to it. Until just the other day, however, I had never heard anyone use the same term – subconscious. I was very happy to read an article on All Access by Tommy Kramer entitled, “Content & Subconscious Tuneout”. In it he voiced many of the same things I have always felt to be true. Coincidentally, I had planned to write about this topic myself, so his thoughts were, for me, quite timely and relevant.
Appealing to a listener positively on a subconscious level is a twofold issue. Your mindset and style is half the battle and your content is the other.
Mindset and style should always be considered in that order as it is your mindset (how you feel at a given time) that will directly affect your style (how you execute).
Going on the air when you’re not feeling your best will eventually communicate itself subconsciously to the listener. You can try and fake it and attempt to put on a “happy face”, but ultimately the listener will “hear through it” and react negatively. They won’t consciously think they’re not enjoying your show – they just won’t. Usually, when asked why someone does or does not like a particular on-air performer, a listener will find it difficult to verbalize. They just know they either do or don’t – they’ve reacted subconsciously.
An occasional off day is normal and very human. These can actually be used to your advantage as it mirrors the life of the listener. You do not want to go to that well too often, though. Over time the listener will develop a negative feeling to your entire on-air presence and once that is formulated it won’t easily be changed… if ever.
An effective communicator also understands that what is not said is as important as what is.
Pacing, use of pauses, and inflective command all work in concert to “fill in the words” for the listener. In short, a communicator does not have to talk at length to be effective. In fact, the opposite is more likely to be true.
Now, it is true that performers can be successful without having an overly sunny and upbeat delivery. They can also be successful while being long-winded. These communicators are able to overcome what would normally be problems and some even go so far as to incorporate them willingly (Howard Stern) because they have complete mastery of the second half of the equation – relevant content.
Tommy Kramer talked of “what’s going on here, today.” That’s relevance.
If someone ever tries to pay you a compliment by saying “you could move this station to (insert major market name here) and it would do great”, accept their words graciously and then walk away knowing you have work to do.
A real compliment would be “there’s no way I could hear this station anywhere else.”
Why is it that radio stations go out of their way to image themselves to a market, promote themselves to a market, play music tested for a market, yet allow jocks to talk about things that don’t have direct relevance to that market?
Name and location drops are one way we have instructed announcers to start adding local relevancy to their content, but these soon become the easy way out and are simply not good enough. What is needed beyond local people and places are local issues.
I have come to the conclusion that we have done a less than satisfactory job of teaching on-air performers what it is to be relevant or compelling. Look closely at a jock’s eyes when you say the word “compelling” in an aircheck. You can see them glaze over. It’s not that he/she doesn’t want to be compelling, it’s because they don’t fully grasp the term. The word “compelling” is quite ambiguous and to be instilled must first be explained in detail and with examples. It’s not enough to say “that was a compelling bit.” You need to say “that garbage strike bit was compelling because it affects everyone and is on all of our minds right now… it’s relevant. The fact you dovetailed that into a produced bit about “scratch and sniff radio” will really give people something to talk about around the water cooler today – great job.”
That bit would have been perishable content which, if targeted, is by its very nature relevant and compelling.
Perishable content must be used on that particular day or it loses its effectiveness. In some instances it can still be referred back to in following days, but by then it has become less compelling. Perishable content can be gleaned from newspapers, but the most effective way is through the jock’s own eyes and ears. The best way to find out what’s on people’s minds is to get out and talk to them. Also, “note the obvious” in your daily travels. By opening your eyes you see and experience road conditions; billboards; new buildings/businesses/restaurants, etc. To assist in this, develop a “feeder network” of listeners, friends, etc. to ensure you cover those parts of your listening area that are out of your normal range. This is a very simple thing to develop. Ask people for help, use their (applicable) stuff, and then most importantly tell them specifically what you used and when. Before long you will have a steady pipeline of prep coming your way. It all sounds simple, but is rarely practiced. The really successful performers know this instinctively and use it daily. Jocks need to look for the “here and now” and use what is targeted in their show.
Non-perishable content can be used at any time and in any place. Unfortunately this type of bit is what is normally heard on the air. This is the downside of the Internet and Prep Sheets as they are taken verbatim instead of being tailored to the market and target. This then becomes another non-relevant, “tune-out” piece of content. Non-perishable bits have their place and can be very compelling if the talent doesn’t rush them to air, but instead comes up with a way to take them to “the next level” whether through producing something or creating an interesting angle to tie it to the market.
Encouraging your people to seek out and utilize perishable content will immediately add relevancy to their show and touch the listener positively on both a conscious and subconscious level.
A communicator “hits the listener where they live” each and every day. A communicator does not need to be told that he or she requires more local content. A communicator is so immersed and focused on their listening area that everything they do has local relevance as a matter of course. This holds true for both their perishable and non-perishable content as they are “plugged in” and know fully what is or is not of interest to their audience. It is that subconscious approach that translates itself on a subconscious level to the listener.
ByrnesMedia spends a great deal of time face to face with on-air performers to attempt to make them less generic and more effective in their market. In doing so, we make the station more effective.
At the end of the day the goal is simple – the listener may not be able to say why he liked you… he just does. He may not think twice about why he checked off or listened to your station… he just did!
Toronto, ON – Ipsos Reid unveiled the Top 10 Most Influential Brands in Canada at FFWD: Advertising & Marketing Week in Toronto. With the results based on its third-annual Most Influential Brands study, Steve Levy, Chief Operating Officer, Ipsos Reid, discussed the dimensions and factors surrounding why brands are influential, and explained how the following brands made it to the top 10 in 2013:
Most Influential Brands in Canada 2013
“To Canadians, brands are more than just corporate logos,” said Levy. “They have meaning, personality and even attitude. When it comes to asking which brand is the most trustworthy, has the most presence or is most engaging – the answer can be a very personal one for many of us. This is because we increasingly identify with, relate to, and define ourselves by them – which gives brands something we can measure: influence.”
Levy also shared some of Canada’s brands that are “on fire” – brands that made the biggest gains in influence during 2013. They are:
McDonald’s Restaurants of Canada
Hudson’s Bay Company
The Most Influential Brand study examined key dimensions that define and determine the most influential brands in Canada, including: Leading Edge; Trustworthiness; Presence; Corporate Citizenship; and Engagement.
Interesting differences were seen in how the genders, generations and regions view brands. The Millennial generations love their new media with YouTube, Pinterest and Netflix ranking quite high among this group, while Gen Xers find The Weather Network as more influential than their Boomer or Millennial counterparts. Among iconic Canadian brands, Tim Hortons is very influential among Ontarians, while the CBC ranks particularly high among Men, Boomers and those from Quebec and the Maritimes.
In 2013, the Most Influential Brands study was also conducted in 15 other countries around the world, including USA, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, UK, France, Germany, Italy Sweden, Belgium, Netherlands, Australia, China, Taiwan and Singapore. Results from all countries are combined to determine the Most Influential Brands in the World.
The Most Influential Brands study was conducted in December 2013. The online survey of 5,008 adult residents of Canada was conducted using the Ipsos iSay Panel. The results are based on a sample where weighting was employed to balance demographics and ensure that the sample’s composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according to Census data. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the results are considered accurate to within +/- 1.6 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what the results would have been had the entire population of adults in Canada been polled.
A record number of people across the country, indeed across North America, joined Canadian Olympian and Bell Let’s Talk national spokesperson Clara Hughes and friends in the conversation to break the stigma and move Canadian mental health forward. Thanks to the outstanding response – a total of 109,451,718 tweets, texts, calls and shares on Bell Let’s Talk Day 2014 – Bell will donate a further $5,472,585.90 to Canadian mental health programs.
“When we embarked on the Bell Let’s Talk journey 4 years ago, making mental health the focus of Bell’s investment in the community, the cause was largely in the shadows. Mental illness just wasn’t an issue corporate Canada talked much about despite the incredible impact of the disease on individuals, families, workplaces and our national economy,” said George Cope, President and CEO of Bell Canada and BCE. “Now, everyone is overwhelmed by how deeply Canadians have embraced the cause, fighting the stigma by talking openly and positively and driving new funding for mental health care and research. Thank you Canada – your participation in Bell Let’s Talk Day 2014 brings our total current Bell Let’s Talk commitment to $67,515,875.20.”
Read more here.
BlackBerry has launched a new feature that it can boast even the latest iPhones don’t have: FM radio.
A new version of the BlackBerry 10 operating system, which the Waterloo, Ont.-based company says includes hundreds of enhancements and new features, started being rolled out Tuesday by mobile carriers in Canada.
Read more here.
This goes against all the radio rules that I have ever been taught, and high on that list is never promote your direct competitor!
But here is a morning show that is clearly not following the rules. Firstly, a little context: A highly rated morning show in Sydney Australia that has been #1 for 52 consecutive ratings surveys, by the name of Kyle & Jackie O left one station (2Day FM) late last year, because they were offered a huge amount of money to move across the street to a rival station (Mix 106.5). This station not only lured away the #1 morning show, they also changed the name of the station and re-launched as KIIS 106.5. The new morning show launched on KIIS on January 20th.
Kyle (Sandilands) is very good at self promotion, and of course the newspapers gave him lots of ink leading up to the launch so he could dish the dirt on his old station which you can read about here
Meanwhile, the new morning crew over on 2 Day FM – Jules, Merrick and Sophie (with Mel B) – launched a week earlier (January 13) and clearly they have some pretty big shoes to fill. This week they surprised many by posting the following message on the 2Day Facebook page, “We understand some of you miss Kyle & Jackie O…You can find them here: http://on.fb.me/1dqamw7
The audience reaction has been positive, with nearly over 1,200 likes to the message within a few hours of it going up.
The past Tuesday (January 21st) the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office granted Apple U.S. a patented for “automatic station tuning” for broadcast and streaming audio, as well as video content. In short this technology will analyze on-board, broadcast or streamed audio and visual media content to create a custom tailored playlist that can switch between sources to deliver an optimal user experience.
Patent #8634944 says various embodiments, a media player or portable media device can enable a user to navigate and discover content or other media assets. The media player may analyze broadcasts and other content streams to determine currently playing and forthcoming content. The media player may switch from one source of content to another to find content that matches user preferences or criteria. The media player may generate playlists based on the matching content, and switch between sources of the matching content automatically. In some embodiments, the media player may receive user input to browse content using a navigation stream. Content associated with stations within the navigation stream may be output. As if the user were tuning a radio dial, the media player may determine what content to played back for each station. The media player may procure content and generate playlists to represent each station focus on by the user.
What does this mean for radio? Well it could be a good thing in that Apple may finally make it easier for users to consume terrestrial broadcasts on the iPHONE, but it also also allow users to automatically skip commercials. You can read more here thanks to Appleinsider.com
One of the most despised men in the world as far as the FBI is concerned is an almost 7 foot, 40 year old German, by the name of Kim Schmitz, but you may know him as Kim Dotcom. He was behind the music sharing site called Megaload which launched in 2005 and at one time was the 13th most visited site on the internet. Kim made millions but the US authorities allege he also created a massive online piracy system which cost the music industry over $500 million.
This high-tech entrepreneur celebrated his birthday (January 21) by launching a new download sharing service called Baboom, which will allow users to download music, video, audio and pictures as well as stream content. So far, the only songs that are available and free to download are songs that Dotcom himself recorded. Based on a quick listen, I doubt any radio stations will be rushing to add any of these songs to the playlist.
What is untested as yet is if artists will see the benefit in putting their music on his service where Dotcom wants that music to be available for free, and fans will only pay pay for it if they really like it.
Word is the service will move of out “preview mode” later this year and Dotcom is promising to shake up the market. He says as well as allowing users to pay to download music, they will also be able to earn rewards for free music in exchange for installing a browser advertising plugin.
In the meantime, Dotcom’s talent for self-publicity has resulted in 80,000 music plays in the first hour the site was live and over 345,000 followers on his site just 24 hours after the launch.
I have been reflecting about the differences between the Australian and Canadian judicial systems.
Last year Q107 co-host and program producer Derek Welsman made remarks on the air about a case where he served as foreman of a jury. The person on trail was found guilty of sexually assaulting three men he had met at a bathhouse, but the comments made by this morning show may have jeopardized the conviction, because the convicted man’s lawyer is now seeking a judicial inquiry into the juror’s conduct, alleging Welsman’s on air comments showed that he was biased against gay men and prejudged the case.
Three days after the Sept. 27, 2013 verdict, Welsman talked on-air about what jurors had to decide before making their guilty finding. But in Canada, like in many countries, it is against the law for jurors to disclose details of their deliberations. To date, the broadcaster has not been charged.
Corus initially suspended the show in December, but by early January 2014 cancelled the show and announced the station would be going in a new direction.
In Melbourne, Australia, controversial broadcaster Derryn Hinch was found guilty last October of breaching a non-publication order relating to details of a murder trial, and for not removing the story from his blog after a suppression order was imposed. The judge in the case accused Hinch of deliberately undermining justice in Victoria. He was fined $100,000 or told he would go to jail for 50 days. Hench refused to pay the fine and was arrested on 17 January and taken to jail.
Perhaps the Canadian judicial system is still looking into the Derek Welsman matter and may still take action, especially if the conviction is overturned.
To be fair, there is more to the Australian story, and Hinch is also no stranger to controversy. If you would like to read why Hinch chose to go to jail you can read about it here
Perhaps what we can take away from both cases is that, as broadcasters, we have an obligation to obey the law. Having a microphone or a blog does not make us above the law and we cannot abuse our power or privilege.
Check out this video from New Zealand. On Monday (January 20th) about 4pm a strong magnitude 6.2 quake hit just as the a Greyhound race commentator started his race call live on television.
The unnamed commentator completes the race call and as the dogs cross the line, cool as can be he says, “We’ve just had a serious earthquake here, hope everyone’s OK.”
Hats off to this person who ever he is. We can only hope that we would be this calm in a similar situation!