February 8, 2019

What are some “old-school” qualities that radio lacks today that could still serve value to the medium?

Buster, WFLZ: Operate with the intent to cause an impact!



Matt Johnson, KSLZ: Mental stickiness, because the current ratings system doesn’t reward it and I really think radio has lost a step because of that. Diary just happened to reward mental stickiness, but when you ask people about the great radio of the past. They always say, “Well one time they did xyz promotion and I’ll never forget that.” The xyz promotion became a diary attention getting thing and you got rewarded for it. That doesn’t happen with PPM. It’s hard to find those spots and stick them in with a PPM world.

Rob Roberts, WRQX: There was team building when we stacked music carts, commercials and imaging for the next person coming in. These days it’s just one person getting up and another coming in. I strive to get our team to pay attention to the hour following their show…and connect. I hate what the computers have done to running a show. From segues to timing a break, a lot of the art has been lost.

Raphael Opida, WIOQ: Keep those phone lines engaged. They’re still the pulse of the radio station and add valuable interactive content.

Jon Zellner, iHeartMedia: I think some of the amazing “once in a lifetime and creative” promotions that felt larger than life back in the day can be updated and modified and would have just as much impact today.

Mike “OD” O’Donnell, WKRZ: Regular bits and benchmarks. If fans love something that you own on your show, they will come back for it again and again. Make the appointment!

Max Volume, KOZZ: Being in the moment, in real time and sharing the news as it happens. Also, my segues were heartfelt, NextGen, not so much.

Buzz Knight, Beasley Media Group: Experimentation and gut are two old school traits worth incorporating in today’s world.

Michael Right, KXRA:
Too much voice tracking going on, too much “piped-in” programming, therefore lacking that local radio station feel.

R Dub! Z90: The “Hollywood” and “Show Business” aspects and angles are often lost. We must bring this back!

Java Joel, WAKS: I feel like radio used to have balls. Can we get some balls back? Going out on gut records… not being shackled to research… using the ol’ gut n’ brains… Maybe a *little* less repetition? I mean.. Back in the day they’d rotate powers every 2 hours. Would that work now? Would anyone ever try it? And bring back post hittin’. If you hate on it… it probably means you just can’t do it.

Jonathan Reed, WNOK: Hot Girl Check-In that the Freak Show did on Philly’s Q102!

Mike McVay, Cumulus Media: Programmers today seldom have the time to “walk away” and listen to their station/s as a listener.

Dom Theodore, Radio Animal Media Strategies: Theatre and fearlessness. Radio could use a good dose of old school “performance art,” where jocks put on an actual show in the foreground instead of just curating the music in the background… along with some creative risk-taking.

Rod Phillips, iHeartMedia: Creativity! It’s difficult to push away the busy schedule and stop and be as creative with content as in the past. There are still some great moments on radio stations and shows, just fewer and fewer “oh wow” moments.

Chris Michaels, FM100: I still like to make sure our station processing sounds pristine. It’s part of the whole presentation! I also like when stations own the streets at events with lots of banners and on-site presence. Be local, and own your market when you have an opportunity to get out and be seen.

Valentine, WBHT:Getting out into the local community.


Matt Talluto, WBYR: Talent coaching! A lot of jocks are hellbent to be seen on the many social media platforms, which is great because that’s where the medium has gone. But what they’re lacking is the entertainment factor (the nuts and bolts of what we do). Essentially they’re exposing to the masses that they’re sub par on the air. Get back to the basic thought of entertaining first. And THEN when you’re doing that well, expose it via all of our many platforms.

Toby Knapp, WASH: Our talent need to be the masters of everything, able to do anything, at any time, at a radio station again. Once upon a time, we could do any job, any task, in any daypart or in any department, in this business. We could engineer our own remotes, after setting up the promotional side of the remote while hosting a live broadcast as we hung banners. We could board op any show on the studio after hosting nights, or doing mornings on a station. Sadly, today, we’ve got people who can’t even execute the basics of radio 101… and that’s a problem.

Jonathan Shuford, WRVW: Unpredictability and excitement.

Kobe, WWHT: Less is more. I think sometimes we need to focus on the basic fundamentals that never get old. Stop trying to cram too much into a break, or even a social media post. Less is more! Be efficient with your content, while maximizing its opportunities for use.

Sassy, WKXJ: We’re missing the farm system for that next generation of talent. There just aren’t any part-timers any more to teach and bring along.

Jammer, WEZB: Street teams. Get out and hang those banner. Winning starts in the streets.Derrick “DC” Cole, WAEB: If “going live” is considered an old school quality… Every new person wanting to be on air I’ve challenged to go live and not voice-track to understand what it’s really like to be a personality. Is “personality” old school? The ability to tell a story and keep the listeners engaged. I once had a programmer tell me early on to look out for talent who have a theater background over communications, as they have the ability to tell perform.

Randi West, WMTX: Just being memorable. That includes anything. I know that’s not really ‘old school’ but the things to be memorable probably are.

Kevin Kash: WIYY: Remember your locale and serve the audience as a community. Grow from the inside out.

Next Week’s Question Of The Week:
Which Pop and/or Rock stars from any era would still be relevant today if they were to have a fantasy comeback career?
e-Mail your responses to: jodorisio@fmqb.com or bburke@fmqb.com