Day 2 @ the DASH 3.0 conference which was held in the Westin DETROIT Metropolitan Airport Hotel. The goal of this conference is connect broadcasters with car companies, aftermarket suppliers and car dealers to talk about how the evolving automotive platforms may impact us all.
The day was supposed to kick off with a key note from Bob Pittman, but Bob could not make it because he was on an earnings call. So Rich Bressler, the CFO, stepped in to give us his “view from the top.” Rich feels that radio’s best days are still ahead of us, and said, “Radio is the best reach medium at 93%, while 1 in 4 millennials do not watch TV.” He feels that radio is best suited to take advantage of consumer trends. He had research that shows that 82% of radio listeners tune in because of personalities. Radio dominates with 84% usage in the car followed by CDs. Only 2% of consumers don’t want AM/FM in their new cars. And 91% of consumers like AM/FM just as it is. They love apps — but not instead of radio. So radio remains the best way for car brands to reach consumers.”
Rich went on to talk about how radio is both local and digital, and is the the most mobile. “We used to have a dialogue with radio listeners and now we have an omnidialogue back and forth across many platforms. AMERICA spends 70% of their time outside of the home. That lines up perfectly with radio.”
When asked what the biggest challenge is, Bresseler encouraged broadcasters to, “stay focused and continue to invest in content. Stay relevant and stay aware that this is our time based on the facts we have at our fingertips.”
Next up was David DiMelo, who is the director of Connected Car innovations at Ford. David was candid, stating that today 30% of all Ford’s sales now happen on-line because of the lead generation system that Ford has put in place. DiMelo said “I don’t want to pay for ears…. I want to pay for actions.” He said that Ford wants to know How many heard my ad and then took action.
He feels that data will be the next revolution and the new economy is about using data to measure, track and influence the consumer purchase. “We search on key words like ‘focus,’ and by those key words, show direct results. We are looking at streaming media sources. He suggested that radio needs to be aware that we need to spend money on digital. There must be some way to spend digital money in a way that generates call to action and can see metrics to see that engagement.
He seemed to base a lot of his attitude towards traditional media on what his wife and young children do when they are in the car. His wife listens to Slacker or Pandora and his young children find content where they want it, and they do not want to wait for their favourite song to come on the radio. He went on to say that if we get to where Apple Car Play is intuitive as radio is then there is a challenge and opportunity.
When asked what radio needs to do, DiMelo suggested that radio “have an app that helps you follow up with the listener to tag commercials just like music and generate sales.”