Thanks to Tracy Johnson of Tracy Johnson Media for including us in his Blog today.
I’ve expanded a little from Tracy’s blog on what we’re doing at Talent Farm with On Air Personalities, The Cliff & Sharon Show, Jennifer Wilde Show, Randy Brooks Show, The SkyWalker Show, to name a few.
We all need to be entertained. Most likely, we tune into the radio for the music we love. If we’re lucky we connect with great personalities. The most memorable and successful personalities entertain us with compelling stories that help us connect to them and the radio station on an emotional level. But great talent is expensive, how can smaller and medium size markets afford world-class talent on a much smaller budget?
More and more stations are contracting talent in other markets to do a show or some voice tracking. Many feel the work of inserting the content and massaging the show to get a great sound for their station is worth the extra time spent. It creates a product that is better than what they could have created locally and for much less than hiring a personality full time.
The need for high performing radio talent has never been greater than it is right now, partly due to competition from the internet. This is the best time ever for radio to take advantage of the tools and talent available to help increase audience, grow revenues, and inspire the local talent to raise the bar and change the game.
The solution for smaller and medium size markets is to utilize outstanding talent. For example, year after year we’ve taken small market stations from 300 aqh to 1500 aqh in two books, with excellent talent, topical and timely content, humor, and a formula that is proven standing the test of time.
What does an increase from 300 to 1500 in AQH mean for revenue? It’s approximately an increase 5 times in value for national advertising buys. It will put your station on the map for more national ad dollars, and equally important, it will give you more negotiating power for services, content, and tools that you might really want – but haven’t yet met the AQH “requirements”.
Thanks to the power of the internet and great minds, Talent Farm has been working with and developing digital distribution platforms over the past few years that allow us to hyper-localize on air content with a minimum of local maintenance. For many affiliates it’s virtually hands free, and we can have you set up and on the air within a few days, even sooner if needed.
Our “almost live” on air personalities sell your station, your city, and your promotions. We set up the hour, tease content and can offer saleable features and local sponsorship reads. Virtually everything you would have your local on air talent doing, short of last minute remotes – unless the station provides transportation expenses for the talent.
What this means is today a station can sound as good or better than many of the stations in medium and larger markets and it can be done with barter commercials, cash, or a hybrid of both.
The solution we are offering started when I first began working with Charlie Tuna a few years ago. Charlie was very humble and one of the greatest talents I’ve had the pleasure to work with. Charlie’s success was a formula that we all learned to use, if we wanted to put some science behind our great (and sometimes crazy) ideas, grow audience and revenues.
Some of the brightest new national stars launching into our hyper localized syndication now in mornings or for stations who seek a bit more personality in afternoon drive, are Cliff Dumas and Sharon Burns.
The Cliff & Sharon Show is growing into multiple formats and provides a show that would cost well over six figures if you were bringing them into the market as a local show. We’re offering them for barter, cash or a hybrid of both. We deliver the CMA and ACM winning morning host Cliff Dumas as part of the Cliff & Sharon show in our “almost live” format, which allows for hyper local customization including daily contesting, callers, station and market liners, promos, artist intros; even sponsorship mentions and commercial reads that can be sold locally.
At my company Talent Farm, 10 months after my business partner Charlie Tuna’s passing, we’re continuing to move forward retaining over 95% of the stations Charlie was on with the Jennifer Wilde show and she’s growing ratings!
Talent Farm continues to grow, launching exceptional talent, and a formula that works in every market, on every station. We’ve grown this past year due to the increase in demand for high profile talent that can localize beyond call letter intros – and we’re doing it from remote locations around the USA, inside the station’s music format. We provide the content and stations provide the music.
In 2017, we will be adding more 24/7 format solutions like our CLASSIC HITS 24/7 format, enabling stations to “plug and play” any talent, including your own, into any daypart, on a variety of tested, proven music formats.
The benefits of using Talent Farm syndication solutions are vast:
- Low cost payments or no cost barter commercials, or a hybrid of both.
- Administration and maintenance is minimal,and there’s no satellite receiver needed.
- Installation takes about 10 minutes,and includes 24/7 monitoring and tech support.
- Once the distribution software is installed and mapped, the clocks are laid out and production begins.
To keep the show fresh, we just ask affiliates to keep us in the loop with the same liner card materials that your local talent is talking about, i.e. this Friday’s car remote, a weekend event, promotions, etc. In other words, if you’re talking about it locally, our talent should be talking about it too. What we suggest is you add us to a group email that includes all the talking points/liners that you’re delivering on the air. We can auto-insert these into the hour, or you can have control over them and place them out of commercial stop-sets, or use them as quickies over music segues.
The costs vs. payoff of great syndicated talent is incredible, so good we almost put ourselves out of business at one station! We helped increase their ratings so much that they could now afford a local talent, moving our talent to another daypart to help build audience there.
For a typical station setup our on-air personalities, distribution & 24/7 tech support has a monetary threshold needed to meet. Each station is different and some have more ratings than others. If you have aqh/ratings we can usually do a commercial barter deal. If you have no aqh/ratings we can still offer the shows for monthly cash payments. If the barter is too much we negotiate a cash/barter deal. In some cases we have placed the commercial barter in a wider clearance window to help keep the hours commercial inventory down. We’re flexible and have discovered many ways of making this work if you’re really looking to change the game. It’s simply a matter of running the numbers on your station(s) and exploring the opportunities that exist with you.
Bottom line, it’s all about results. When our talent grows more audience, your sales increases.
As an added bonus our on-air personalities inspires and motivates the rest of the on air staff to raise the bar, even if your talent doesn’t realize it’s happening. It’s a great motivator to listen to great radio talent. I know when I was on the air, my performance increased when I heard, studied and worked with better talent. This works well with any on air talent looking for direction and ultimately to grow.
I’ve worked with talent in every size of market, occasionally we discover a personality with spark that just needs direction and focus. That doesn’t happen every day because of a lack of time, training, or resources that are needed for development of talent. We’re also here to help you grow your talent, through coaching, direction and one-on-one air check sessions.
Talent Farm On Air Personalities are here to help you make this possible, to help motivate and increase the performance of your radio station and the talent who work there.
Do you need an inspiring show to help raise the motivation bar for your team?
Steve Wall’s Talent Farm is an independently owned and operated radio content and syndication services company. Talent Farm currently distributes; Jennifer Wilde’s Daily Show, The Randy Brooks Show, Alpha Libraries for Radio Production / Imaging / Podcast Music Libraries, accounting for hundreds of affiliations with commercial radio stations across the USA. The Seattle-based company Talent Farm LLC was founded in 2006 by radio programmer / air talent “ThatGuy” Steve Wall.