The challenge of tracking public radio listeners as the media and technology world is roiled by change is the central purpose of Jacobs Media’s Public Radio Techsurveys. For the past eight years, the Public Radio Program Directors have partnered with Jacobs Media to produce research to help guide the system’s programmers, marketers, and managers as they face a future filled with challenges and opportunities.
The 2016 presidential election poses challenges for journalists and stations covering local and national elections. Facts and statistics have taken a back seat to opinion and tweets. Join veteran journalists to discuss how to cover the election and the incoming president and local officials in a time changing norms in politics.
Public media audiences are exploring new digital services at a rate that makes it hard to keep up. When potential seems everywhere, savvy leadership becomes critical. NPR's Tom Hjelm and WBUR's John Davidow take us through a conversation about defining the digital value proposition for ourselves and users, making choices about when to complement and when to compete with existing services, and thoughts on the alignment of national and station-based digital strategies. KNKX/Seattle's Matt Martinez will guide a discussion that begins with vision but gets real about resources and priorities, and where we should be placing our bets.
Join a panel of PRI's young rising stars who, throughout the week, give voice to those often-underrepresented communities within our national discussions. PRI's programming consistently explores the breadth and depth of our complex and exciting world in a way that strongly connects communities, cultures, and world events.
Audience development on digital used to be a crap shoot. Stations would try something to see what sticks. These days, it is possible to be much more sophisticated about growing audience on digital. In this session, we’ll hear from stations that are having above-average success and figure out what they are doing right. You’ll see examples from stations that lead in overall growth, audience engagement, and on-demand usage based on a blind data sort by NPR Digital Services. One of the key threads that runs through each example is the importance of good content management and strategic focus. And the lessons learned will be applicable to stations of all sizes. Be prepared to get valuable tips you can take back to your station.
Jennifer Brandel has been exploring ways to bring audiences into content decisions for years. Last year she launched Hearken, a model and supporting technology for enabling audience engagement at every point of the editorial process. In this session, Brandel will convene a panel of newsrooms using this audience-first approach and walk through, step by step, how engagement can lead to higher-performing content and attracting more members. It turns out, you don’t have to choose between your mission and the metrics. (Also, you don’t have to use Hearken to benefit from and use these same approaches!
Larry Rosin will present surprising information from Edison’s studies about Podcasting including special findings among public radio users.
Kelsey Padgett of Radiolab and More Perfect takes us on the roller coaster ride that goes into making compelling, entertaining audio. What does it take to make a fully realized segment? How many drafts are too many? And why are editors so hard on you? (Spoiler: It’s because they love you.)
Last November, KPLU’s owner Pacific Lutheran University announced that it was selling the license to University of Washington owned KUOW in Seattle. The announcement sent shockwaves throughout the region and all of public radio, and it seemed certain that most of the KPLU staff would lose their jobs. Then something surprising happened: The community rose up and demanded a chance to raise the money to buy the station as a community licensee. What happened next is a tale of hyper community engagement that resulted in a successful fundraising effort: $8.5 million in four and half months. KPLU is now independent KNKX. Come hear about their lessons learned and how you can apply them to your station (even if you aren’t facing an existential crisis).
StoryCorps teaches us that “listening is an act of love.” It’s also the most elemental unit of the public radio economy. Following more than a year of record increases in listening, stations are converting that listening into new revenue to fuel new content creation, including new content for future audiences. Let's talk about how growing listening sustains public radio, and allows stations to tell new and deeper stories to all kinds of audiences.