Pending Business: Roe v Wade

By Steve Lapa
Lapcom Communications Corp


PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — When the Supreme Court first ruled on Roe v Wade in 1973, talk radio was a fledgling niche format struggling to help re-establish fading interest in AM radio. Fast-forward 50 years to last Friday’s Supreme Court ruling that could drive well-programmed talk radio stations to the forefront of every community.

As the ruling to reverse Roe v Wade works through societal and financial issues, could 50 years of history be reversed? Could the impact change the next 50 years of talk radio? Here are three possible shifts that could change your talk radio marketing strategy.

  • Summer listening – Talk radio hosts will drive the conversation that will make your talk radio station a go-to destination this summer. And summer listening and the accompanying marketing of talk radio is traditionally challenging. COVID or not, summer is usually time for more vacations, outdoor events, and lifestyle changes that impact how and where we listen. Will this summer’s radio listening be different as the impact of this Supreme Court ruling works its way through talk radio?
  • Women – Will more women weigh-in on talk radio? A historically 50-plus male skewing format may become a more demographically diverse medium as more and more women express their opinions and reach out to connect via talk radio. Talk radio is still a relatively safe harbor where privacy is still respected and often protected while opinions count. Perhaps more women will tune in and become loyal fans.
  • Good by No-Buy – Many business leaders, often women in key positions, are openly taking a stand on this Supreme Court decision and that could change how talk radio is viewed. From JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs to Dick’s Sporting Goods and Nike, business executives are taking a definitive stand on this ruling. Perhaps this starts the process of changing what is considered a controversial “hands-off” environment that often prevents advertisers from investing in talk radio. Will the dreaded “no-buy” and station “scrub” fade from the scene as business leaders become more actively plugged in?

You never know what events will play into talk radio’s content and marketing cycle. Talk radio has come a long way since the 1970s. Ours is a dynamic environment that should always strive to reflect the most current topical thinking and marketing standards that keep the format alive and growing.

Steve Lapa is the president of Lapcom Communications Corp. based in Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Lapcom is a media sales, marketing, and development consultancy. Contact Steve Lapa via email at: