Question: Can a radio station create an experience for their listeners by playing the same songs over and over again? Another question: Is the radio game all about offering new releases and a variety of music?
Two Questions One Answer
Yes, a particular frequency can repeat a song a number of times and still retain their audience. And no, there is more to attracting listeners and keeping them hooked than just with variety or the latest tunes. Context is key here: the one word answer to the questions posed.
By context, we mean the manner, the style in which a radio station presents its music. One frequency could have colourful personalities (RJs) drive its style. Another frequency may choose to programming content to define their style. The main objective here is to develop a specific context, a signature style if you will, that differentiates a station from the competition. This, in turn, could have listeners tuning in not just to hear the music, but also to engage with the station’s distinct programming style.
More Than Music
A radio station is associated with and defined by the music it plays. However, songs may not necessarily be the end all of a frequency’s identity. Content that is music related can provide variety to the listeners tuned in. This helps in keeping things fresh, avoiding the routine. For instance, interviewing artists, bands, or people associated with music can give the audience something different to tune into. The kind of artists interviewed can be based on the kind of music the station plays. A frequency that focuses on fresh tunes may select an upcoming artist for the interview.
Apart from interviews, music features is another interesting option for stations to try out. This could include a piece on a particular genre or a decade.
Context Is King
The context in which a radio station presents its music is fast becoming just as important and an audience magnet as the audio content.