Pandora & Radio

This is infuriating

Have you seen the latest article about Pandora and its plans? *


This is frustrating for a lot of reasons.

Can you imagine any Radio CEO being invited to be on The Colbert Report? Pandora has 1% of the national listening to “radio” (versus traditional radio’s 99%), but Tim Westergren is a master of PR. Most radio companies can’t even get coverage in their local newspapers, much less on national TV.

If Radio had invested the money wasted on promoting HD into their web sites…

Westergren understands he has to sell more than gross numbers, and he’s spending money, in a company that doesn’t generate a lot right now, to offer music and content that Radio will not.

First, and foremost, Pandora has always made music discovery part of their plan.

I realize your station can’t play lots of new, unfamiliar songs if you hope to win ratings. But, does that stop you from offering these new songs to listeners on your web site?? Does it stop you from letting your listeners have a voice and a vote in moving the most popular of these new songs into an on-air rotation?

We have to find a way to make music and artist discovery part of our plan if we hope to be part of “radio’s” future.

And there is absolutely no reason consolidated radio has not — can not — offer exclusive, compelling artist content, including video btw. No reason except inertia and a stubborn insistence on thinking of “radio” as something that has to come out of radio transmitters and antennae.

And it certainly doesn’t hurt Pandora’s relationship with music artists that they actually share part of their royalty payments. As Westergren says, “For the first time, artists are going to get to participate in the radio advertising revenue business. It’s a huge business that has been walled off for musicians.

We have to go on the offensive, now. Playing defense is no way to grow a business, and Pandora is committed to growth, even at lower profits.

As if this wasn’t frustrating enough, tomorrow I’ll share YouTube’s latest venture.

Where’s my blood pressure meds…?



*My thanks to Allan Hotlen for sharing this link.