I began working with local owners of 6 radio stations about two years ago. The sites had broken links, missing images, alignment issues, and several pages with outdated information. They only sent email blasts when they happened to sell a sponsor for one. Also, the company gave away banner ads on their homepage as added value to advertising packages on the radio. They had the ability to simulcast on the internet for 4 of the 6 stations, but the links were hidden on content pages or broken. In all fairness, they had no one to do the work and no budget because the websites were losing money.
Initially, we sat down and evaluated the most glaring needs. We repaired all the broken links, images, and pages. We started with the worst sites and worked through them one by one up to the best looking and most effective site. The website traffic and listenership jumped up 20-40% for every station the month following the updates. After we knew we were not causing any more damage to our online reputation, we started laying out a plan to rebuild the sites and our marketing plan to grow their audience and revenue.
We decided the target audience was the local public and listeners of their stations with a secondary target of advertisers trying to reach these visitors. After some brainstorming and research, we put together a marketing plan to attract these targets and create relationships with them.
Some of our plan included:
- Making listening online as easy as possible.
- Providing local information such as news, traffic, weather and gas prices online.
- Making listener registration for email blasts as easy as possible with subscribe and unsubscribe links.
- Sending email blasts every Wednesday with information, coupons, and advertisements.
- Redefining online advertising as non-traditional revenue, instead of free added value.
- Setting uniform sizes and pricing for ads so they were easier to sell.
- Incorporating the websites in all on-air contests and promotions.
- Creating blogs and content that could be easily updated.
- Creating recruitment pages for job seekers and employers as a new revenue stream.
Finally, we redesigned the sites with a completely new designs and new content, even a new operating platform. All 6 stations now stream online and have links to listen live on their homepages. The sites were re-launched to public and promoted heavily on the air, on promotional products, and other marketing materials. The company now has a plan for how to attract visitors, maintain their websites, and sell advertising. Most importantly with the new sales generated online, they can afford to update and grow their website.