Like Moths to Radio’s Flame

The flame of Radio is more brilliant than ever as it attracts the best and the brightest minds into its connected orbit. We see the irresistible pull every day in so many ways as the allure and unharnessed potential of Radio in all its forms continues to draw in very talented and motivated people.

We only need look in our own backyard to understand the vibrancy and kinetic energy surrounding our member radio stations and their staffs right here in Southern California. Our region is arguably the nation’s epicenter of great Radio and audio content being created everyday by our 175 member stations, as well as cutting edge mobile apps, complete digital solutions, nationally known talent, sold-out station events, award-winning creative commercials, real and sustained community and charity involvement, brilliant NTR events, and 15.5 million listeners a week covering 52,000 square miles. And of course, the nation’s biggest traffic jams with huge in car listening!

In Southern California, the flame of Radio burns brilliantly.

Southern California Radio’s “flame” has more weekly reach than Google, Facebook, Twitter, the Internet, and any other media sources have in a month.

Southern California’s “population” of registered vehicles, 16.8 million and counting, exceeds the entire populations of Chicago, Phoenix, Philadelphia, Houston, and New York City combined

Southern California also has enormous “human capital” and is the home of 220 spoken languages, the largest Hispanic community, the second largest Asian community, as well as the largest Iranian and Armenian populations in the U.S. This region is home to 3 of the top 20 universities in America.

Our collective total listening audience has grown over the last 5 years by a solid 5%. This is in stark contrast to a 12% decline in any local TV news viewership, the surging 48% increase in DVR ownership in the LA DMA, the erosion of pure plays like Pandora in time spent listening, the no growth trend of Sirius/XM, and of course the unfortunate decline of newspaper circulation and revenue.

One would think that with all the new technical and digital distractions vying for Southern California Radio’s envious 94% reach, that Radio would be challenged to grow; indeed the opposite has occurred. Radio is flourishing as never before!

Yes, Southern California Radio is alive, brilliant, creative, robust, and always looking to step up its performance, much like the new talent that it so readily attracts.

So what is it about Radio and its flame that is attracting so many creative minds looking for a fulfilling career in a business that is not high tech, not an IPO darling, and has been around now for almost 100 years?

Well, it starts with an undiluted belief in the power of one. You see, it is the promise of what Radio can offer that is so appealing as seen from many different backgrounds and very different eyes. The following super motivated individuals are working diligently in a medium they believe in and trust with their futures. It is these people who hovered around the flame and knew that Radio was for them.

• Like the music director of a major FM station who attends all his station events to ask listeners what they like and what they don’t like about his music selection, one on one. By knowing that first-hand information is always the most reliable source for keeping his product relevant and enjoyable to his primary audience, he can understand what his audience really wants. When asked why he does this, his direct answer was simply, “I must be the best; there is no second place for me.”

• The personal commitment to being fully trained and ready to start her Radio sales career makes this new, aspiring sales person drive 8 hours a week to attend our SCBA Spring 2014 Sales Training Classes. She works a full time job but wants a career in Radio. “I want to earn serious money and I am told I can do that in Radio sales so this is a small investment in my future. My passion has become Radio.”

• One Radio station webmaster scours other websites when she is off from work, “so I can really focus on other site content as well as the design and stickiness of competitive sites.” Her dedication goes far beyond the normal 8 hour work day and it’s all at her choosing. Her career in Radio is all about web content and that’s a 24/7 deal.

• The quick willingness of so many professional sales managers to give freely of their time to train and develop new sales people at our SCBA sales training class. The same people that don’t work for them and may end up competing against them for business in the future. “It’s my way of giving back what so many have done for me over the years,” said one enthusiastic manager.

• A “street team” member employed at her favorite Radio station part time takes business classes so she can be considered for an accounting position, not with a large firm, but at her favorite radio station. “I would not work anywhere else,” she stated proudly.

There are hundreds of Southern California Radio stories of talented, dedicated, and driven individuals who love their chosen careers in sales, programming, web content, social media, promotions, management, accounting, research, administration, digital, production, on air work, engineering, street teams and so many more career choices yet to be invented by an industry that excels at reinventing itself.

In today’s bumpy economy, Radio’s flame burns brightly now more than ever because its future promises real career opportunities in a variety of disciplines, and not just jobs. Radio offers rich rewards in so many ways to the achievers, the creative, the driven, the sellers, the programmers, the promoters, the managers, and just about anyone looking for a better working life and all Radio asks for in return is your heart, your mind, and your full commitment to succeed.

If you are in Radio, you know that’s a very fair deal.


Thom Callahan
In Southern California