Seth Godin has a marvelous mind for insight.
If you’re not a subscriber to his posts or you just don’t remember reading “Problems and Boundaries,” you can find it HERE. Like all of his posts, it’s short.
Here’s the insight: “All problems have solutions.” And, “If there’s no solution then it’s not a problem.”
The main problem broadcast radio has today is over-commercialization.
That problem created Pandora and Spotify. The solution to that problem is the reason for their existence.
If, as some owners and GMs have told me, it is impossible to accept lower profit margins in publicly traded radio companies, then it becomes what Seth would call an “avoidable conflict.”
Owners of the companies and their stock could choose to accept lower profit margins, just as owners of Amazon stock have accepted lower profit margins than Amazon could have produced (because Jeff Bezos has always been more interested in growth and dominance than short-term profit).
So, that choice leaves us understanding that at some point in the future, possibly the near future (meaning less than 30 years), broadcast radio will cease to exist, just as public phone booths have ceased to exist. They won’t be needed.
Or, we can go back to the problem, see it as a problem, meaning it is solvable, and solve it, so that broadcast radio will thrive for decades.
Where is our Jeff Bezos?
Who among radio’s elite is willing to do the previously unthinkable but eminently solvable thing?