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Fred Jacobs is President of Jacobs Media, a media research and consulting firm. Jacobs Media clients have included CBS Radio, Premiere Radio Networks, Citadel, Greater Media, MTV Networks, Playboy, Amazon, Electronic Arts, NPR, Sylvan Learning Centers, and Taubman Malls. Learn more about the company here.


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August 2011

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Rod Schwartz

Radio's own need to believe in their medium before they can convince anyone else of its genuine potential as an advertising medium.

Accompanying this belief must be an investment in the quality of our product, and that includes the quality of the commercials we write and produce.

Fortunately, there are stations across America and Canada that are, in fact, doing these things every day, to the benefit of their listeners and advertisers alike.

Maybe we should be doing more to uncover and tell their stories, for the edification and elevation of an industry that could use just this kind of shot in the arm right now.

Jennifer Richards

As a sales person, this is frustrating to read because I am constantly barraged with "old radio" requests from agencies that we constantly reject. Pitching "new radio" ideas to agencies has been extremely challenging; my experience has been that they do not fully understand how radio and the internet can be a powerful ally for their clients. They seem more than content to use the same old ideas rather than embrace something fresh and innovative, and in most cases, has more trackable results!

Radio is so exciting--after all, it is THEATER OF THE MIND--anything is possible! How can we impart our listeners' passion for our stations/formats to these agencies that think we are stuck in the 70's?


Jennifer, I appreciate your frustration. There's no question that another takeaway from the roundtable was the antiquated attitudes exhibited by several of these agency professionals. We need to do a better job of demonstrating what radio can do to benefit clients, and how we can produce results for them. The combination of old school reach and new media tools should be an incredible enticement but we need success stories, investment, and commitment from the very top.

Jennifer Richards

Thanks Fred. I think this also demonstrates how the stations that aren't putting quality into their product are hurting the stations that are trying to break free of the habits of the old. Sadly, it's yet another example of how our industry tends to hold itself back instead of up.

I agree that any impactful efforts must start at the top; I believe my company is doing that and has been for some time. I guess we need everyone else to get on board so we can finally educate agencies and clients about the power of radio in a digital world.

Thanks for fighting the good fight Fred!

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