Industry News

TALKERS News Notes

UK radio and outdoor firm Global inks an exclusive platform distribution and ad sales deal with iHeartMedia in which Global and iHeartMedia will license, distribute and represent each other’s podcast portfolios.

The Philadelphia Eagles and Audacy announce a multi-year extension to their 30-year partnership through the 2028 NFL season. As part of the new agreement, “SportsRadio 94WIP” will continue to serve as the team’s official flagship radio partner. The broadcast team is led by Eagles Hall of Famers Merrill Reese and Mike Quick in the radio booth and longtime 94WIP personality Howard Eskin on the sideline.

iHeartMedia chairman and CEO Bob Pittman & president COO/CFO Rich Bressler will participate in a question and answer session during the Wells Fargo TMT Summit on November 29 at 3:45 pm ET. A live webcast of the session will be available to the general public at the start of the session through a link on the Investors homepage of iHeartMedia’s website.

PodcastOne acquires the exclusive sales and distribution rights, as well as certain ownership and IP/derivative rights, to true crime podcast, “Lost In Panama.” PodcastOne president and co-founder Kit Gray comments, “We continue our stated strategy of rolling up the fragmented podcast industry to deliver the best podcast library with the lowest cost per acquisition. We are excited and look forward to more announcements in the near future.”

Industry News

iHeartMedia’s 2023 Third Quarter Revenue Falls 3.6%

iHeartMedia released its operating results for the third quarter of 2023 and reports revenue of $953 million, a decrease of 3.6% over the same period in 2022. The company reports operating income of $69 million compared to the operating loss of $211 million it reported in Q3 of 2022. iHeartMedia reports a net loss of $9 million during Q3 2023, down significantly from the net loss of $310 million it reported in Q3 2022. The company breaks down revenue into three segments – the Multiplatform Group (broadcast radio, networks, and sponsorship & events), the Digital Audio Group (digital excluding podcast, andim podcast), and Audio & Media Services Group. In the Multiplatform Group, broadcast radio revenue was $455 million, down 6.1% year-over-year, and networks revenue was $116 million, a decline of 8.6%. In the Digital Audio Group, digital excluding podcast revenue was $165 million, an increase of 1.1%, while podcast revenue was $103 million, an increase of 12.5%, year-over-year. iHeartMedia chairman and CEO Bob Pittman says, “We’re pleased to report that our third quarter results were at the high end of our Adjusted EBITDA and Revenue guidance ranges. Our Digital Audio Group’s performance reflects the strong flow-through characteristics of the business and Podcasting continues to be a strong growth engine for the Company; additionally, while the Multiplatform Group does continue to be impacted by advertising industry uncertainty, we’ve seen sequential gradual quarter to quarter improvement throughout the year and we remain confident that the Multiplatform Group will be an additional growth engine for the company as the advertising marketplace recovers.”

Industry News

iHeartMedia: Study Reveals Disconnect Between Consumer and Marketers

iHeartMedia and Malcolm Gladwell’s Pushkin Industries release the results of a study conducted by Morning Consult and Advertiser Perceptions that explores the growing disparity between consumer values and behaviors and marketing priorities in the U.S. They say that the report “underscores the increasing urgency for marketers to reset and realign their marketing and media plans with American consumers to ensure the success of campaigns in an increasingly polarized post-COVID economy.” iHeartMedia chairman and CEO Bob Pittman comments, “This research is a reminder of how different we marketers are from today’s consumers, especially post-pandemic. Based on these results, we need to challenge ourselves as we build marketing and media plans to be sure we use real consumer data and not just trust our instincts and personal experiences. These personal biases are too detached from the consumers most marketers are trying to engage, and which are often behind major marketing misfires. This study aims to level-set the conversation to benefit both our audiences and advertisers.” Some of the key findings from the report include: 1) While 40% of consumers report that they’ve never heard of NFTs, that number drops to 0% for marketers; 2) 62% of consumers have never heard of the TV show “Succession,” while less than 5% of marketers have never heard of “Succession”; and 3) Almost one-third of consumers have never heard of pickleball, while all marketers [surveyed] have heard of pickleball. The findings were presented by iHeartMedia’s Conal Byrne, CEO of iHeartMedia’s Digital Audio Group, and author and podcaster Malcolm Gladwell at iHeartMedia’s AudioCon 2023 on Wednesday (9/13).

Industry News

TALKERS News Notes

The son of WIP, Philadelphia midday host Hugh Douglas, also named Hugh Douglas, died in a car crash in Georgia on Monday (9/4). The younger Douglas – a student at Morehouse College – was traveling with fellow student Christion Files Jr. who also perished in the crash. The elder Douglas is a former star defensive end for the Philadelphia Eagles. He co-hosts the WIP show with Joe Giglio.

iHeartMedia, Inc announces that chairman and CEO Bob Pittman and COO and CFO Rich Bressler will participate in a question and answer session during the BofA Securities 2023 Media, Communications and Entertainment Conference on Wednesday, September 13 at 9:40 am ET. A live webcast of the session will be available to the general public at the start of the session through a link on the Investors homepage of iHeartMedia’s website. A replay of the webcast will be available in the Events & Presentation section of iHeartMedia’s Investors homepage.

In celebration of yesterday’s (9/5) International Day of Charity, Warner Bros. Unscripted Television, in association with Telepictures, debuted the “Six Degrees with Kevin Bacon” podcast in collaboration with iHeartPodcasts and SixDegrees.Org. In his new show, Bacon will encourage listeners to make a difference in the world around them and will help them to lean in, learn and be inspired to act.

CNN Audio announces that CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta is leading listeners into an exploration of the human body’s most intricate and fascinating organ – the brain – when the eighth season of his podcast “Chasing Life with Dr. Sanjay Gupta” returns, premiering Tuesday (9/12).

Industry Views

Politeness, Punctuality and Power

By Walter Sabo
Consultant, Sabo Media
A.K.A. Walter Sterling
Radio Host, Sterling On Sunday
Talk Media Network

imFor decades the power-lunch spot in Manhattan was the beautiful Four Seasons restaurant. Check it out: A history of the Four Seasons Restaurant in New York City – Four Seasons new ownership (townandcountrymag.com)

Top clients would host luncheons at the Four Seasons with Sabo Media. These included Walter Anderson, former chairman/CEO of PARADE magazine who was a regular customer. If the lunch was scheduled for 12:30 pm and I arrived at 12:15 pm, Anderson was already there. Next time, I would arrive at 12:05 pm for the 12:30 pm lunch; he was already there.

The restaurant manager/maître d’ explained that, “The most powerful person always arrives first.” Of course. The most powerful person could control where she sat, where she faced and what your view of the room would be. When Walter Anderson hosted future lunches, I arrived at about 11:15 am for the 12:30 pm meet!

If I had any early career success it was not because I knew anything, it was because of Eleanor Ranft, my assistant. Prior to working with me she had been Robert Sarnoff‘s assistant for 20 years. Robert, as-in-son of the General. (Eleanor knew how to address letters to ambassadors.) At the end of the workday, she would go over the telephone call sheet and make sure I had returned every call. Neither of us were going home unless I returned every call.

When addressing emails, the most powerful people return the emails instantly. Test it, send a note to the most powerful people you know, see what happens. Mel KarmazinBob PittmanHoward SternMichael HarrisonChris OlivieroKraig KitchinDavid YadgaroffBill WhiteLee HarrisDan MasonJarl MohnMarc Rowan instant answers. Instant response keeps a person in the deal-flow, the conversation and the action. Instant response makes them powerful.

Conversely, for weeks I tried to have lunch with a local market EVP, no answer. I didn’t want a job; I was trying to place a sales order for an agency friend! No answer. Finally, I asked the market program director why I never heard from his boss. Answer, “He doesn’t think you can do anything for him.” Obviously, the order went to a different company.

A common trait of every star I’ve had the privilege to know is that they are all extremely polite. For example, Randy ThomasCharlie VanDykeBruce Morrow, Howard Stern, the late Casey KasemElvis Duran are kindness and manners personified. They send thank you notes. Their interpersonal attitude is to share experience rather than to say look it up yourself. Many top executives built their entire career by sending thank you notes.

That being said, THANK YOU for being a client of Sabo Media. Thank you for clearing “Sterling On Sunday” on stations like KMOX, KMBZ-FM, WPHT, KDKA and Albany’s Talk 1300.  Have a pleasant Labor Day.

Walter Sterling-Sabo can be contacted at Walter@sabomedia.com or 646.678.1110 mobile. He’ll answer immediately. Sabo Media’s robust client list over the years has included PARADE magazine, Sirius Satellite Radio, The Wall Street Journal Radio Service, RKO, Salem, and CBS. Sabo was the first to monetize online video stars and influencers through his company HITVIEWS.

Industry News

TALKERS News Notes

iHeartMedia chairman and CEO Bob Pittman and COO CFO Rich Bressler will participate in a question and answer session during the Goldman Sachs Communacopia + Technology Conference on September 7 at 3:25 pm ET. A live webcast of the session will be available to the general public at the start of the session through a link on the Investors homepage of iHeartMedia’s website. A replay of the webcast will be available in the Events & Presentation section of iHeartMedia’s Investors homepage.

Triton Digital announces that it is integrating data with YouTube views of podcast episodes into its Triton Podcast Metrics. With this data, publishers can now view how their content is consumed on YouTube in conjunction with their overall podcast downloads.

The Kansas Association of Broadcasters announces the Hall of Fame inductees and Distinguished Service Award honoree for 2023. KSU professor and longtime broadcaster (WGN, Chicago; WGST, Atlanta; Coast to Coast AM) Ian Punnett is the Distinguished Service Award honoree. Mike Manns, Dale Morrell, and Randy Picking are the Hall of Fame inductees. See more about them here.

Industry News

iHeartMedia Second Quarter Revenue Down 3.6%

Reporting its operating results for the second quarter of 2023, iHeartMedia reveals net revenue of $920 million, a decline of 3.6% over the same period in 2022. The company reports an operating loss of $897 million compared to the operating income of $82.9 million it reported in Q2 of 2022. After posting a net income of $15.1 million in the second quarter of 2022, the company reports a net loss of $882.9 million in Q2 of 2023. Looking atim iHeartMedia’s financial by segment, broadcast radio revenue was $429 million, a decline of 7.2% over Q2 of 2022. Network radio was $122 million (down 4.2%), digital revenue (excluding podcast) was $164 million (down 1.6%), and podcasting revenue was $96.7 million (up 12.9%). iHeartMedia chairman and CEO Bob Pittman says, “We are pleased to report that our second quarter 2023 results reflected Adjusted EBITDA slightly above the midpoint of the guidance range, and more than double the Adjusted EBITDA we generated in the first quarter, and our consolidated revenue were above the guidance range. The continued positive performance of our Digital Audio Group, led by our Podcasting business, and the significantly improved relative performance of our Multiplatform Group during this soft advertising period, are encouraging metrics for us, and we’re seeing indications of improving macroeconomic trends which we expect to have a positive impact for us in the second half of the year, with most of that impact in Q4.”

Industry Views

Sabo Sez: Consolidation Has Been Radio’s Savior

By Walter Sabo
Consultant, Sabo Media
A.K.A. Walter Sterling
Radio Host, Sterling On Sunday
Talk Media Network

imHALF of all radio stations in the United States lose money – at least they did back in 1991. The NAB used to put out an annual report revealing how many radio stations were profitable. Usually half the stations in America lost money. Since consolidation, the NAB stopped putting out that report. It is reasonable to believe that far, far fewer stations lose money today.  Shared costs, real estate, technical economies due to digital equipment versus analog all indicate that there must be fewer money-losing properties.

The business of radio is very strong and appealing to investors. Apollo Advisers was the first money-in Sirius. The Apollo fund recently bought Cox radio. Marc Rowan, Apollo’s CEO is the smartest guy in any room. Rowan doesn’t invest in hunches; he buys businesses that grow return on investment.

In 1970, 7% of all ad dollars went to radio. Today, 7% of all ad dollars go to radio.  In 1970, Procter & Gamble spent almost zero dollars in radio. Thanks to consolidation and the vision of Randy Michaels, radio has shifted from a “frequency” ad buy to a “reach”  buy. Reach commands higher rates and more sophisticated advertisers. The RAB’s Erica Farber and Sound Mind’s Kraig Kitchin focused on winning P&G dollars. Today, Procter & Gamble is a top-five radio advertiser.

Are you sick and tired of “experts” saying that radio is slow to digital?  Radio is not slow, radio was first-in. Mark Cuban put thousands of stations on Broadcast.com in the 1990s. Today radio leads the list of most downloaded podcasts. NPR has been the leader in podcasting since Alex Bennett started the industry. Under Bob Pittman and Jarl MohniHeart and NPR dominate downloads.

Why the pessimism and anxiety in the hallways?  It started with the management of consolidation. There are major consulting firms to help employees go through mergers. Consolidating an industry and its workforce is both an art and science. No radio company sought or engaged experienced expertise to manage consolidation. Instead, when a quarter’s revenue was missed, people were fired. Your friends in the next office were suddenly out of work. Layoffs should have happened all at once, based on a strategic plan. There is no plan. Firings are executed on random dates, with no notice; a horrible practice that continues. That’s why you’re miserable. No plan.

Radio stations in Canada, Europe, Australia and the UK are having excellent years. Canadian Music Week conventions, Commercial Broadcasters of Australia and European conferences are bursting with optimism and good news about radio. Why? Consider this possibility: Most radio companies outside the US are owned and managed by executives with a programming background. To do their jobs, programmers must be optimistic about the future. A salesperson’s job requires them to spend their days listening to media buyers’ objections to advertising on radio – negotiators! It sucks.

Consumers like or love radio. The reason SiriusXM Satellite Radio has 34 million listeners PAYING for radio is that listeners want MORE stations. Much, perhaps most, “music discovery” comes from radio listening. 53% of Americans will listen to radio today. In 1970, 53% of Americans listened to radio daily.

Walter Sabo was the youngest executive vice president in the history of NBC. The youngest VP in the history of ABC. He was a consultant to RKO General longer than Bill Drake. Walter was the in-house consultant to Sirius for eight years. He has never written a resume. Contact him at walter@sabomedia.com. or mobile 646-678-1110. Hear Walter Sterling at www.waltersterlingshow.com.

Industry News

Bob Pittman Addresses Key Issues in TALKERS 2023 Video

iHeartMedia CEO Bob Pittman and TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison engaged in an exclusive nine-minute video conversation that debuted during the opening segment (sponsored by Doctor Asa) of TALKERS 2023, the 26th annual edition of the talk media industry’s longest-running and most important conference held June 2 at Hofstra University. In it, Pittman candidly and directly addresses key existential issues pertaining to the talk radio industry as it faces daunting forks in the road. Harrison, who has known Pittman since he was a 20-year-old music director at WMAQ, Chicago in the mid-1970s, asks the chief of radio’s largest firm such questions as, “Do you still have the same passion for radio as I remember you having when we were kids in the business?” “What are iHeart’s intentions for news/talk and sports talk radioim within the realm of the company going forward?” “How can radio remain true to its roots and mission as an audio medium and theater-of-the-mind without missing the opportunities provided in a multiplatform environment?” plus more. Pittman says that this is a “golden moment” for both radio and the larger field of audio in which it is and will remain a major player. He pointed out that “25% of iHeart’s stations do not play music” and that more and more shows on the company’s music stations are “actually talk shows that play little or no music at all.” He reaffirmed the company’s awareness that personality plays an important role in the presentation of music and it is its intention to pivot back in that direction. He candidly addressed the divide between the coastal elites who influence the direction of national media but are largely out of touch with the heartland and the rest of real America. The video is now posted and can be viewed here.

Industry News

TALKERS 2023 Lives Up to High Expectations

For 10 exciting hours on Friday, June 2, Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York became the center of the talk media universe as some 250 professional broadcasters and dedicated students of communications gathered to hear more than 60 speakers in addition to networking with each other at TALKERS 2023. It was the 26th annual installment of the talk show field’s longest running and most important national conference. Speakers included such luminaries as WABC, New York/Red Apple Media CEO, John CatsimatidisNewsmax Media CEO, 

im

 

Christopher RuddyConnoisseur Media CEO, Jeff Warshaw; KBLA Talk 1580, Los Angeles CEO (and Freedom of Speech Award recipient) Tavis SmileySound Mind, LLC CEO (and Lifetime Achievement Award recipient) Kraig T. Kitchin; and WDUN, Gainesville, GA talk show host (and Woman of the Year recipient) Martha Zoller. There was a special, exclusive video appearance by iHeartMedia CEO Bob Pittman. The iconic conference included panel discussions addressing such topics as programming news/talk and sports talk radio, podcasting, generating revenue, artificial intelligence in broadcasting, navigating a talk show hosting career, AM radio and automobiles, the challenges facing the ratings process, and the future of technology and media. Speakers included major talk show hosts, program directors, brand managers, agents, syndicators and radio station owners. Look for extensive stories and photos from the conference in TALKERS over the next days and weeks including full video coverage of every speech, panel and presentation. All of us at TALKERS are grateful to the talk media industry for making TALKERS 2023 a tremendous success!

Industry News

Bob Pittman Addresses Key Issues in TALKERS 2023 Video

iHeartMedia CEO Bob Pittman and TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison engaged in an exclusive nine-minute video conversation recorded yesterday (5/24) to be debuted during the opening segment of TALKERS 2023, the 26th annual edition of the talk media industry’s longest-running and most important conference set for Friday, June 2 at Hofstra University. In it, Pittman candidly and directly addresses key existential issues pertaining to the talk radio industry as it faces daunting forks in the road. Harrison, who has known Pittman since he was a 20-year-old music director at WMAQ, Chicago in the mid-1970s, asks the chief of radio’s largest firm such questions as, “Do you still have the same passion for radio as I remember you having when we were kids in the business?” “What are iHeart’s intentions for news/talk and sports talk radio within the realm of the company going forward?” “How can radio remain true to its roots and mission as an audio medium and theater-of-the-mind without missing the opportunities provided in a multiplatform environment?” plus more. Pittman says that this is a “golden moment” for both radio and the larger field of audio in which it is and will remain a major player. He pointed out that “25% of iHeart’s stations do not play music” and that more and more shows on the company’s music stations are “actually talk shows that play little or no music at all.” He reaffirmed the company’s awareness that personality plays an important role in the presentation of music and it is its intention to pivot back in that direction. He candidly addressed the divide between the coastal elites who influence the direction of national media but are largely out of touch with the heartland and the rest of real America. The video will make its debut at the TALKERS 2023 conference and then be made available publicly in the video coverage of the event that will be posted in the weeks following June 2. TALKERS 2023 is officially sold out. See more about the agenda, sponsorship and hotel information here.

Industry News

TALKERS News Notes

Remote News Service adds 13 new affiliate stations to its roster, including Alpha Media’s KTSA, San Antonio; Forcht Broadcasting’s stations in Paintsville, Kentucky, and Basin Mediactive’s stations in Klamath Falls, Oregon. Remote News Service president and lead anchor Lesley Lotto says, “We’ve always provided fill-in news anchors for vacations, illness, sudden departures, etc. Across the industry there’s been an increase in fill-in requests, especially from stations that need someone on the air in 6 to 12 hours, which we are able to provide.”

The Motley Fool announces that Chris Hill, longtime host of the “Motley Fool Money” podcast and radio show, is leaving at the end of the month. Taking over host duties is head of programming Dylan Lewis. Hill comments, “Getting the chance to create and host Motley Fool Money has been the highlight of my time at The Motley Fool. One of the things I’ve always loved is the team approach we’ve taken to helping listeners understand what’s happening on Wall Street, bringing a long-term perspective to daily market news, and offering stock ideas and analysis. We have a deep bench, and that same team approach will continue after I’m gone. With the show in such a position of strength, the time is right for me to explore the next chapter in my professional life.”

iHeartMedia chairman and CEO Bob Pittman and COO and CFO Rich Bressler will participate in a question and answer session during the J.P. Morgan Technology, Media and Communications Conference on May 23 at 5:15 pm ET. A live webcast of the session will be available to the general public at the start of the session through a link on the Investors homepage of iHeartMedia’s website and a replay of the webcast will be available in the Events & Presentation section of iHeartMedia’s Investors homepage.

Industry News

iHeartMedia First Quarter Revenue Declines 3.8%

iHeartMedia Inc reports its operating results for the first quarter of 2023 and revenue for the period was $811.2 million, a decline of 3.8% over the same period in 2022. After reporting operating income of $12.3 million in Q1 of 2022, the company posts an operating loss of $48.8 million. Also, iHeartMedia’s net loss increased from $48.7 million in the first quarter of 2022 to $222.4 million in Q1 of this year. The company’s Digital Audio Groupim segment’s total revenue was $223.4 million, up 4% over the same period in 2022. The company’s Multiplatform Group reports total revenue of $529 million (a decline of 7%) and that segment breaks down as follows: Broadcast Radio revenue was $383.2 million (down 7.7% from Q1 2022) and Networks reports revenue of $107.9 million (down 8.2% from Q1 of 2022).  Chairman and CEO Bob Pittman comments, “We are pleased to report that our first quarter 2023 results were a bit above the high end of our Adjusted EBITDA and Revenue guidance ranges – and that more importantly, while both the macroeconomic climate and the advertising marketplace remain uncertain, the audio and digital advertising markets appeared to be stronger in the quarter than we had initially anticipated. We expect that our second quarter Adjusted EBITDA, while below 2022 levels, will be approximately double what we generated in the first quarter, and this, in combination with our Q1 first quarter performance relative to guidance, gives us confidence that our Adjusted EBITDA results will continue to improve throughout 2023, and that we will be well positioned to build further in 2024 in terms of revenue growth, profitability, and Free Cash Flow generation.”

Industry News

iHeartMedia Debuts New B2B Podcast Network

iHeartMedia unveils a new B2B (business to business) Podcast Network “created for and hosted by advertising and marketing industry leaders.” The company calls it the “first ‘marketer to marketer’ audio network of its kind” that “gathers leading marketing and advertising podcasts under one umbrella, keeping media executives up to date with industry trends, and making it easier for brands to use audio to reach the largest addressable audience of media executives in audio.” iHeartMedia Digital Audio Group CEO Conal Byrne says, “We know that marketers are hot on podcasts with the majority planning on increasing their advertising spend in audio this year. While marketers are spending more, they’re also listening for longer, which is why we wanted to create a network of podcasts specifically for their industry with content that inspires and educates. iHeartMedia’s B2B Podcast Network brings this highly strategic audience into focus and provides the platform brands need to access them authentically.” Podcasts included on the network is “Math and Magic: Stories from the Frontiers of Marketing,” hosted by iHeartMedia chairman and CEO Bob Pittman.

Industry News

TALKERS News Notes

— Salem Media Group, Inc plans to report its fourth quarter 2022 financial results after the market closes on March 8. The company also plans to host a teleconference to discuss its results on that day at 4:00 pm CT.

— iHeartMedia, Inc chairman and CEO Bob Pittman and COO and CFO Rich Bressler will participate in a question and answer session during the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference on March 8 at 3:15 pm ET. A live webcast of the session will be available to the general public at the start of the session through a link on the Investors homepage of iHeartMedia’s website. A replay of the webcast will be available in the Events & Presentation section of iHeartMedia’s Investors homepage.

— The “Moments with Marianne” show, hosted by Marianne Pestana and heard on KMET LLC’s KMET-AM, Banning, California each Friday from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, is adding another program to the station’s schedule on Tuesdays from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm.

— The University of Minnesota athletic department and LEARFIELD’s Gopher Sports Properties announce a multi-year contract extension with iHeartMedia Minneapolis through the 2026-27 athletic season. Gopher football games will air on “KFAN FM 100.3.” Men’s basketball will air on a mix of KFAN and KTLK-AM. Gopher men’s hockey will air on KTLK-AM. Women’s basketball game broadcasts will continue to air on KQQL-HD3/K244FE “KFAN+.”

— Wonder Media Network, a women-founded, mission-driven podcast network, announces that their original hit podcast “Womanica,” which tells the often untold stories of iconic women across history, will join the iHeartPodcasts platform. iHeartPodcasts president Will Pearson says, “We’ve been such big fans of Wonder Media Network and the incredible podcasts they’ve produced over the past few years and we’re incredibly excited for this partnership. ‘Womanica’ has already built a big and passionate audience and we’re thrilled to have the opportunity to introduce these amazing stories to millions of new listeners across our network.”

Front Page News Industry News

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

WPHT, Philadelphia Midday Star Dom Giordano is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. The “Dean of Philadelphia Talk Radio,” Dom Giordano is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Giordano is a former public school teacher considered one of the media’s leading advocates for education and activists for education reform. He has also been an outspoken voice of reason in the conversation about Philadelphia’s alarming crime, drug and homelessness problems. Harrison and moderate conservative Giordano take a deep-dive into these topics in addition to discussing fascinating post-midterms Pennsylvania politics as well as the strong possibility that the GOP and news/talk radio are approaching a major fork in the road regarding their support of baggage-laden Donald Trump versus rising new Republican stars such as Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. Don’t miss this eye-opening conversation! To listen to the podcast in its entirety please click here.

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Skippy Leaves KMJ-AM/FM Fresno After Three Years Co-Hosting Afternoons. The Fresno Bee reports that Frances Echeverria – a.k.a. Skippy (right) – has left Cumulus Media’s news/talk KMJ-AM/FM, Fresno. After leaving alternative rock KFRR-FM’s morning show in 2019, she joined KMJ-AM/FM to host the afternoon drive show alongside Philip Teresi (left). But on Friday (11/11), she announced that she’s retiring from radio. She told her audience, “The station has meant more for me personally that I can ever explain.” Echeverria called the change a lifestyle change, as much as a career change. The Bee notes that she wrote in a post on the website, “I didn’t want to do radio anymore. It wasn’t that it was bad. In fact, the chemistry with my partner was continually evolving into something better. I had good bosses. I felt like I was making a difference, whatever that means. Working there made me smarter. And yet I was done. Deep in my heart and down in my soul. Done.” Echeverria also works as a therapist and is a professor at Fresno State.

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FOX News Media Extends Deal with Mark Levin. Talk media personality Mark Levin and FOX News Media agree to an extension of Levin’s current multi-year deal in which he’ll remain host of “Life, Liberty & Levin” that airs Sunday nights at 8:00 pm ET on FOX News Channel. Levin says, “FOX News Channel and I are extending my show. Suzanne Scott trusted that I could do a show and I want to thank her and her team and all the folks in between who’ve supported this. I want to thank you. I want to thank FOX. I want to thank my family.” FOX News Media says “Life, Liberty & Levin” is the second highest-rated cable news program on weekends, averaging 1.7 million viewers on Sundays at 8:00 pm for 2022 to date. “With Levin at its helm, the show’s total audience almost triples CNN’s programming in the timeslot and nearly quadruples MSNBC’s total and A25-54 demo viewership. In October 2022, the program earned 1.6 million viewers and 127,000 in the demo, making it the number one program in weekend primetime programming.”

WNYC Produces Podcast Series Titled ‘The Divided Dial’ That Focuses on Salem Media Group. The latest news organization to present a report on news/talk radio is WNYC. In this case, the project from WNYC Studio’s On The Media is a five-part podcast titled, “The Divided Dial,” that “charts the growth of broadcasting company Salem Media Group.” WNYC says Salem is “a once small, conservative Christian radio network that quietly expanded their reach in far-right media through the hard to monitor, difficult to fact check, and minimally scrutinized medium of talk radio. With holdings of over 100 radio stations (many in the top 25 markets) and shows syndicated to over 3,000 stations across the country, the series uncovers how Salem exerts influence behind many conservative figures in America — while receiving considerably less media attention than other far-right news sources. The series also puts Salem’s growth in the context of nearly nine decades of radio history, illuminating how conservative dominance of the airwaves was aided by long-term regulatory erosion and strategic pressure from the right.” The project is reported and hosted by Katie Thornton and includes conversations with scholars, journalists, and media experts, as well as a “rare on-the-record” interview with Salem SVP Phil Boyce. You can find the first podcast in the series here.

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LABF Celebrates ‘Industry Trailblazers’ at ‘Giants of Broadcasting & Electronic Arts’ Event. The 2022 Library of American Broadcasting Foundation’s “Giants of Broadcasting & Electronic Arts” event took place last night (11/15) at Gotham Hall in New York. The annual event was hosted by ABC News’ “Nightline” co-anchor Juju Chang and celebrated “distinguished individuals who have – for the past century – been the creators, innovators, journalists, leaders, performers, and producers that have brought the electronic arts to the prominence they occupy in the United States and the world today, and who have set the stage for the future.” Net proceeds from the event will benefit the Library of American Broadcasting collection located at the University of Maryland and support LABF awards for students and scholarly works about the history of broadcasting and their impact on American society and culture. Pictured above are: (standing, l-r) Chang; Jack Goodman, LABF co-chair; Adam Symson, president & CEO, E.W. Scripps; Bob Pittman, chairman & CEO, iHeartMedia; Pete Williams, justice correspondent, NBC News (ret.); Sean McManus, chairman, CBS Sports; Joyce Tudryn, IRTS president & CEO; Heidi Raphael, LABF co-chair; Fareed Zakaria, CNN anchor, author, columnist, The Washington Post; (sitting l-r) Alex Prud’homme; Deb McDermott, CEO, Standard Media Group; S. Epatha Merkerson, actress; and Bud Walters, president, Cromwell Media. Photo: Wendy Moger-Bross

TALKERS News Notes. A new content distribution deal between VSiN, The Sports Betting Network and Gow Media will put VSiN’s longform sports betting shows and Brent Musburger’s one minute “Action Updates” on Gow Media’s SportsMap network. VSiN says it expects the deal to more than double its terrestrial radio affiliates. Gow Media CEO David Gow says, “We are thrilled to be working with VSiN. VSiN has set the standard for sports gambling content. Through this content distribution deal, we will bring together some of the most influential personalities in sports radio to entertain and inform our combined audiences.” VSiN founder and CEO Brian Musberger adds, “David Gow has created a powerhouse in the U.S. radio industry, and we couldn’t be more excited to be his choice to deliver real-time sports betting news, analysis and insights to the growing SportsMap radio audience.”…..CNN Audio announces that Matt Martinez joins the network as showrunner for “The Assignment with Audie Cornish” – CNN’s newest weekly podcast premiering tomorrow (11/17). Previously, Martinez was a senior producer at On Being Studios, producing radio shows and podcasts for “On Being with Krista Tippett.” He was also the director of content at KNKX Public Radio in Tacoma.

Colorful Radio Station Owner Michael Zwerling Announces That He Is Offering Heritage Talker KSCO, Santa Cruz for Sale. According to an extensive article published by the Times Publishing Group, Inc. of California’s Central Coast (and an advertising campaign in TALKERS) legendary broadcasting industry owner and personality Michael “MZ” Zwerling is offering KSCO and associated properties for sale after a 31-year stint at the operation’s helm. The article states, Michael Zwerling has been in love with KSCO since he was a high school kid broadcasting Santa Cruz High On The Air in the mid-1960s. As the station owner since 1991, he’s created a radio station that’s a voice for pretty much everyone. But now, at 71 — his birthday was Nov. 9 — he has a new love in his life, Amy Hao, co-host of the “China Watch” show on KSCO and a veteran traveler, and he wants to spend his time traveling with her. The couple, who met in 2019, are “totally into free speech,” Zwerling said. They recently returned from a two-week safari in Africa. “Amy’s not happy unless she’s traveling, and she wants to take me to all these places,” Zwerling said. That’s why he’s looking for a buyer for KSCO 1080 AM and its FM translators, along with sister station KOMY 1340, and the one-acre of flat land at 2300 Portola Drive, Santa Cruz, overlooking Corcoran Lagoon. The asking price is $1.5 million cash for the two radio stations and the broadcasting business. The asking price is $6 million cash for the property, which includes the Art Deco studio building, garage, parking lot, concrete event patio, plus the three broadcast towers in the lagoon, which give the 10-kilowatt station the power of a 50-kilowatt station on dry land, according to Zwerling. To read the entire story, please click here. Photo: KSCO GM Michael Olson standing in front of KSCO’s historic Art Deco studios along Silicon Beach in Santa Cruz, CA. Times Publishing Group.

Trump Announces ’24 Bid, Midterms Aftermath, The Economy/FTX Collapse, Immigration, Abortion, Biden-Xi Meeting, G-20/Russia-Ukraine War, Trump Org Trial, and NASA’s Artemis Launches Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (11/15). Former President Donald Trump announces his run for president in 2024; the aftermath of the midterm elections, including the Republicans’ expected control over the U.S. House and Rick Scott’s challenging Mitch McConnell as top Republican in the U.S. Senate; the rate of inflation, concerns about a recession, and the collapse of cryptocurrency exchange FTX; a judge halts the use of Title 42 to expel migrants from the U.S.; Georgia’s strict abortion ban is struck down in court; the meeting between President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping; the G-20 summit in Bali, Indonesia and its condemnation of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine; former Trump Org CFO Allen Weisselberg testifies at the company’s fraud trial; and NASA launches its Artemis rocket that re-boots the U.S. moon program were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

 

The Radio Sales Arena is Changing and We Are On the Leading Edge. The key to sales growth in radio going forward is multi-platform digital marketing. In the coming decade, “radio” will simply be the engine driving an increasingly complex and sophisticated array of digitally powered platforms creating endless packages and options for the advertiser. The keys to success will be in branding that cuts through the noise and surgical targeting that delivers optimum efficiency for agencies that know exactly what they want. The Salem Media Group is leading the way and the opportunities for our sales team are endless. But, right now, we need that special individual who has the tools, the vision and the ambition to get it done. That one special person who truly “gets it.” Jerry Crowley, the longest-running GM in the nation’s largest market, says, “We want one outstanding seller who can take it to the moon! Compensation will reflect potential and performance – salary will range from 50k- 85k plus substantial bonuses and generous commissions.” Candidates should send cover letter and resume to Jerry Crowley, VP/GM, Salem Media Group, NY (WMCA 570am The Mission/WNYM 970am The Answer) at Jcrowley@nycradio.com.